Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah

Guide me, O Thou great Jehovah,
Pilgrim through this barren land.
I am weak, but Thou art mighty;
Hold me with Thy powerful hand.
Strong Deliverer, Strong, Deliverer
Be Thou still my strength and shield
Be Thou still my strength and shield

Open Thou the crystal fountain,
Whence the healing streams do flow;
Let the fire and cloudy pillar
Lead me all my journey through.
Bread of Heaven, Bread of Heaven
Feed me now and evermore
Feed me now and evermore

When I tread the verge of Jordan,
Bid my anxious fears subside;
Bear me through the swelling current
Land me safe on Canaan's side.
Songs of praises, songs of praises,
I will ever give to Thee
I will ever give to Thee
Performed by Pendryus Male Choir
Y Senedd - Welsh Assembly - Cardiff
Cwm Rhondda

Wele'n sefyll rhwng y myrtwydd
Wrthddrych teilwng o fy mryd;
Er o'r braidd 'rwy'n Ei adnabod
Ef uwchlaw gwrthrychau'r byd:
Henffych fore! Henffych fore!
Caf ei weled fel y mae.
Caf ei weled fel y mae.

Rhosyn Saron yw Ei enw,
Gwyn a gwridog, hardd Ei bryd!
Ar ddeng mil y mae'n rhagori
O wrthddrychau penna'r byd ;
Ffrind pechadur! Ffrind pechadur!
Dyma'r llywydd ar y mor.
Dyma'r llywydd ar y mor.

Beth sydd imi mwy a wnelwyf
Ag eilunod gwael y llawr?
Tystio 'r wyf nad yw eu cwmni
I'w gymharu a'm Iesu Mawr.
O! am aros! O! am aros!
Yn Ei gariad ddyddiau f'oes.
Yn Ei gariad ddyddiau f'oes.
The Welsh people share a tradition of music and poetry, a
heritage of fellowship and hope and a love of God and country.

If your last name is Evans, Jones, Griffiths, Hughes or Davies,
you may have a tie to the ancient Celtic land of Cymru - Wales.

If you are a native Welshman who now lives in the United
States, are visiting from Wales and long to hear the lilting
voice of a fellow Welshman tell a tale or two, or just
interested in all things Welsh....  then please join us!
If you want information, past and present, on the Rhondda
Valley, South Wales, then look no further.
Click on the link below and immerse yourself in the
richness of life in the Valleys.
Rhondda Valleys
Beaumaris Castle, Anglesey
Castles in Wales
Click on the link below to
view more Castles in Wales
Photograph courtesy
A Welsh Columbus? Prince Madoc:
America’s Twelfth-Century Discoverer

by Bill Izard
Mobile, Alabama
If history teaches us anything, it teaches us that few are content with their lot in life, including, and perhaps especially, princes. This proved true
in 1170 when the great Welsh king Owain Gwynedd died, leaving over a dozen such discontent princes, legitimate and otherwise, to duke it out
over succession to the throne. Apparently one of the contenders, however, grew disgusted with all of this fraternal strife and bloodletting,
deciding to express his discontentment differently. Taking his brother Rhirid with him, Madog ab Owain Gwynedd, more commonly known as
“Prince Madoc,” left the country entirely and set sail for new lands.

What new lands, you ask? How about the sunny shores of Mobile, Alabama, for starters!
Unless you had a very special education indeed, this is probably not one of the stories you heard in history class growing up. Most likely you
were taught the standard line that Christopher Columbus, sailing under Spanish colors, was first to discover America. Or perhaps you even
caught wind of the fact that Viking Leif Erickson planted a colony in North America nearly five hundred years prior. But who has heard of Prince

Now you have.

After returning to Wales with fabulous tales of lush green valleys in a strange new world, Madoc gathered enough Welshmen to fill ten more
ships and sailed again for America, this time to stay for good. Initially landing near Fort Morgan at the mouth of Mobile Bay, Madoc and his
fellow settlers gradually migrated up the Alabama and Coosa Rivers, inhabiting caves here, building forts there, and eventually intermarrying
with Native American tribes, all the while generously leaving behind clues for folklorist archeologists and the legend’s most faithful believers all
across what are now the Southern and Midwestern United States.

American settlers in the sixteenth through nineteenth centuries repeatedly heard stories of the “white Indians,” fair-haired, blue-eyed Native
Americans whose ancestors had at times lived in the caves (“underground”), spoke a language almost identical with Welsh, and built little round
boats (unlike the elongated canoe) that resembled remarkably the ancient coracle common to Wales. The nineteenth-century painter George
Catlin lived among the Mandan people for years and believed they were descended from the Madoc crew, noting their features, customs,
language, boats, and villages were uncommonly Welsh-like. Unfortunately, the Mandan tribe, like so many others, was decimated by trader-
borne smallpox in the 1830’s.

Remnants of the forts still stand, however. One of the forts is almost perfectly identical, in terms of setting, layout, and construction, to Madoc’s
birthplace, Dolwyddelan Castle in Gwynedd, Wales. Fort Mountain, Georgia, in the Chattahoochee National Forest boasts 800 linear feet of
800-year-old wall in ruins guarding the southern approach to a forbidding crag. And there are actually several of these fort-like structures
scattered here and there. Did the Welsh really build them? Was Madoc really the first European to see Gulf shores and the virgin interior of the
American South?

Of course, the legend has its naysayers. Modern historians like to take the view that the myth was “invented” during the Elizabethan era to
support English priority among the competing claims to the New World among European nations. Other historians have argued Penrhyn Bay at
Rhos-on-Sea in the north of Wales, from which the Welsh prince was supposed to have set sail, could never have supported a ship large
enough to cross the Atlantic. But researchers have found references to Madoc that pre-date both Elizabeth and Columbus. And not long ago
excavations revealed evidence of an ancient harbor in the hero’s hometown of Rhos-on-Sea, apparently debunking the debunkers on that point
as well. Indeed, support for the historicity of the legend may be growing rather than shrinking.

Whatever the case, there have always been plenty of Alabamians to take up the Welsh-Discovery-of-America cause. In 1953 the local Mobile
chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution erected a plaque to Madoc’s glory: “In memory of Prince Madoc, a Welsh explorer who
landed on the shores of Mobile Bay in 1170 and left behind, with the Indians, the Welsh language.” Not surprisingly, there is an identical plaque
in Rhos-on-Sea.

Engineer and Rhos-on-Sea native Howard Kimberly grew up with the plaque and the legend. Founder of the Madoc International Research
Association, Kimberly collaborates with others devoted to the story, whether in America or the British Isles or wherever. His search led him into
talks with Ken Lonewolf, a Shawnee “wisdom-keeper” who lives in Pennsylvania.

Lonewolf, whose DNA indicates Welsh ancestry, believes he is descended from the original Madoc-led Welsh settlers. He notes government
records of the sale of his ancestral village at the turn of the nineteenth century. The signature on the legal document is that of the last chief of the
Shawnee: “Chief White Madoc.” Apparently the name and the legend meant something to the Shawnee as well.
So when giving thanks for Columbus, and remembering Leif Erickson too, maybe we need to start including the noble Prince Madoc, the Welsh
warrior who took up exploring instead of fratricide and bumped into Alabama and America. Who knows? Stranger things have happened when
discontent, the thrill of adventure, and the hope for a little elbow room all combine to drive a body out into the ocean waves and river valleys and
mountaintops of the world. Three Southern cheers for Wales!
Scroll down to
read more about
Prince Madoc
We are pleased to announce that Welsh-Canadian author Barrie Doyle
has accepted our invitation to be the guest speaker at our 2018 St
David's Day Banquet, speaking on the research he has done on Prince
Madoc!  Don, I expect you're smiling !!!

His Madoc book is at the publisher's and is expected out in the spring.  
Sarasota Welsh Society members, Jeffrey and Mary Lou Jones, met
him at last summer's Welsh Festival and bought one of his books.  
They strongly suggested we contact him, so Amy, our President, did.  

Barrie and his wife, Kathryn, will be driving down, bringing books they
hope to sell to us all!  They have friends wintering in Orlando who will
come for our banquet, too!
Born in Wales, Barrie is a former journalist, public relations consultant,
college professor, broadcaster and freelance writer.  He served with
major publications in Canada and the United States before sharing his
media expertise as a consultant, training corporate executives and
Christian ministry leaders.

Other books in The Oak Grove Conspiracies Trilogy are:
The Excalibur Parchment
The Lucifer Scroll
Barrie Doyle