Thu, 30 Sep 10 13:58:00
Does anyone remember Islwyn Roberts, Llanbedr, Meirionethshire, who hitch-hiked his way around the world, carrying a ‘Pays de Galles’ sign with him? What was his story, what became of him, do you have photographs of his travels or maybe post cards sent by him or recordings of his memories? If you know anything of him, or maybe you’re related to him, the National Library of Wales would like to hear from you.
A major exhibition at the National Library of Wales will open on 16 October 2010, Small World - Travel in Wales and Beyond. One of the main images to promote the exhibition is a photograph of Islwyn by Geoff Charles which appeared in Y Cymro on 12 June, 1958.
'The photograph of Islwyn Roberts is one lovely one of a person from the Welsh countryside who decided to pack bag and see the world. It was a world which was very different from ours today; it was at the height of the Cold War and the growth of nationalism in Africa and Asia. He would surely not have been able to travel to many countries such as the former Soviet states and to fly by plane would have cost a fortune. The Library would like to hear more of Islwyn’s story or archive and so, I’m sure, would the Welsh people,’ said Carys Mai Lloyd, curator of the Small World exhibition.
‘The picture of Islwyn will appear on posters, on street banners and bus advertisements. Over fifty years after the photo was taken, his face will become very familiar to people in 2010 as it was in 1958,’ she added.
Small World will be held at the National Library of Wales from 16 October 2010 until 2 April 2011. It will include ancient maps by Humphrey Lhuyd and John Speed, diaries of the sea voyage to Patagonia, railway posters, letters by Edwards Peet who emigrated to Ohio in 1868, as well as photographs by Geoff Charles and John Thomas and much more which will draw special attention to the National Library of Wales’s extensive collections relating to travel in Wales and the Welsh.
Travel-themed Events at NLW
To coincide with the exhibition’s theme, many of Wales’s foremost travel writers will also appear at the National Library including; Jan Morris, Bethan Gwanas and Mike Parker. Liz Pitman will give a talk on ‘Pigsies and Paradise’, Michael Freeman on ‘Comments on Peaseant Life in Ceredigion', and Huw Thomas will talk about the Library’s maps collection.
Wales and the World will also be the theme of this year’s Lens photographic festival held at the Library, which takes place on 19 and 20 November 2010.
Siôn Jobbins, NLW Press Office: 01970 632 902 firstname.lastname@example.org
For full details of the exhibition and related events please see the Small World Exhibition page