James Morgan

The last surviving employee of The Powdermills at age 96.
James Morgan at the Powder Mills

By the death of Mr. James Morgan, Battle has lost its oldest inhabitant. Born on the 18th March 1823, he would have
reached 100 years next March 1923. Coming to Battle from Ticehurst with his parents while still a baby he has lived in the
town ever since.

He started work at the age of nine, and worked until he was eighty-five. One of his first jobs was as a "House-boy" in the

Going to work at the Powder Mills for the late Mr. Charles Lawrence, he drove the powder van, and during the Crimea war
he helped with the transport of 1,300 barrels of gunpowder to Tonbridge in Kent.

He lived for 67 years in Powder Mill Cottage where his wife died 15 years ago at the age of 82, on her Birthday. Mr.
Morgan's memory was good to the last, and he found great pleasure in relating to anyone about things that had passed in
Battle years ago.

He had helped to make the new road to London, and remembered Battle as a coaching-station. The oak trees that are
now to be seen in the Abbey Park close by the Stumbletts were planted by Mr. Morgan as young saplings. He was a great
believer in Herbs and attributed his long life to having used them.

Mr. Herbert Blackman found him of great assistance in compiling his book about the Battle Powder Mills. See the
photograph of James Morgan, as it was reproduced in Mr Blackman's book, at the top of this page

Mr Morgan has 60 descendants alive today, including the eldest son, who will be 74 next year, living in America, and a
daughter who has emigrated to Australia.


James took to his bed ten days ago, and while being visited by one of his grandsons,(my grandfather Percival White)
sang a song to him in quite a strong voice.

His end came quite peacefully, after having had the careful attention of his daughter Elizabeth, and son-in-law, Walter
White (my Great-Grandparents) whose great object had always been to nurse him along so as to reach his 100th Birthday.
He almost made it !

He died in November 1922,

Battle's oldest inhabitant dies

(My Great-Great Grandfather)
James Morgan
My Great-Grandfather, James
Morgan 1823-1922 worked at the
Powdermills. One of his jobs was to
drive wagon loads of the
gunpowder to Tonbridge where it
was loaded on barges and
conveyed by water to magazines at
Read what the papers said
Podermill Cottages
My Grandfather, Percival J.White,
and his elder brother Reginald
R.White, were both born at the
beginning of the 20th Century in the
Fishing Cottage seen on the left
side of this picture
Elizabeth Morgan
The inside of Elizabeth Morgan's
copy of Uncle Toms Cabin dated

It is addressed as Park Dale
(Powdermill Pond)
Uncle Tom's Cabin
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Last Updated 2015