The Museum contains various sections, each of which focuses on an aspect of community life. Click on the titles below to read more.
One of our larger sections this encompasses maps, aerial photographs, old photographs and hand painted views of the local area and its inhabitants. We can catch a glimpse of how everyday life was lived through household items such as bottles, clothes, and dolly tub. There are many photographs which depict the street layout, and the many small shops which existed in earlier times.
The many local sites that taught the children of our villages gradually evolved into the more formal schools organised by the council in each village. The current feature of this section is a model of Rhosymedre school as it was originally planned. The display also includes many class photos, annual outings, and old toys and mementoes of school life in Cefn Mawr, Acrefair, Garth and Fron.
As befits our industrial heritage this section could take over the museum! Local industries such as coal, brick, metal work, chemical and engineering are represented. Visitors with an interest in Monsanto and Air Products can find employment records, with some additional information – especially useful if you are tracing your recent family history. The huge numbers of local brickworks in the area give an insight into employment pre 1900, together with many examples of the output of local kilns.
Maps, books and travel paraphernalia recreate the experience of past travel essentials. As a result of industrial needs the area was awash with road and rail links and many of these formed the routes we use today. The closure of the Ruabon to Barmouth line was formerly our ‘feature of the month’, but we also have photographs of early 1900s coach trips and the Acrefair, Cefn Mawr and Rhosymedre stations/halts.
A coracle sets the scene for this section – together with, probably, the oldest industrial object in the museum. These are the nuts and bolts used in the building of the aqueduct. The local canal, now a World Heritage Site, combined with the beauty of the Dee as it rolls through our local countryside offer a backdrop for many books and maps of the area.
An array of medals, uniforms, cigarette and ration cards portray the lifestyle of locals during WW1 and WW2. These vividly bring to life the bravery, heartache, and determination of those who lived through these times.
It is difficult to describe the fervour and support given to the many religious places in our area. The expanding population of the 1800s led to the construction of many churches and chapels, and these congregations were often led by men of national standing who visited Wales, yet many of these sites have now disappeared.
One of the oldest established football clubs in Wales, the Druids have previously formed one of our monthly features. Other sports represented include boxing, bowling, and hockey. Photographs and sports memorabilia portray the equipment used in past times, together with international caps, cups, and characters that helped to make this small group of small villages well known across Wales.
The work of local artists can be found throughout the museum but in one room we have the history of local bands, local choirs and individuals who have made music their focal point. Each day a CD is played from a selection we have garnered in which form a relaxing backdrop to browse through the albums, photographs, bill posters and radios and gramophones from bygone days.