born 24 September 1868
in Abergavenny, Monmouthshire
died 9 April 1939
in Pandy, Monmouthshire
I have his birth certificate, showing he was born at Chapel Road.
1872: Father Thomas's diary records: "Took Springfield Cottage Cantrif October 11 1872. Came in October 22 1872." Rose adds: 'could well be the cottage next-door-but-one to the Cantref (with Auntie Violet's little cottage in between)'.
1891 census: Living at Prospect Cottage, North Street, Abergavenny, with parents and siblings. Age is 22 and place of birth is Abergavenny. Occupation is 'Joint Maker Fitter'.
In the 1901 census he is named Thomas (his father and older brother's name), but it seems clear that this man is really Joseph (all other details given fit Joseph, and older brother Thomas was dead by 1901). A Joseph Baron married either a Mary Emma Hadley or a Mary Jane Pugh in the September quarter of 1892 in Abergavenny district (11a98). The 1901 'Thomas' Baron's wife is called Mary J. Baron, and present in the same household is a nephew Thomas Pugh; this would seem to support the theory that the 1901 Thomas Baron is actually Joseph. Furthermore, a Thomas Pugh has been in touch to let me know that in his family bible there is a record of the marriage of Mary Jane Pugh to a man with the surname Baron.
1910: Joseph Baron was the informant of his mother's death; he was living at 99 North Street, Abergavenny, on 9th February 1910.
1911 census: living at 99 North Street, Abergavenny (a house of six rooms) with his two sons, brother, and a housekeeper. He is a widower, aged 41, born in Abergavenny, and working as a locomotive engine fitter (for the London and North Western Railway).
1939: I have found in the Records Office a Joseph Baron who died aged 70 in Abergavenny in the spring quarter (Apr.–Jun.) of 1939. I have also found the following entry in the National Probate Calendar: 'BARON Joseph of Bryngwent Pandy Monmouthshire died 9 April 1939 Administration London 18 July  to Joseph Baron garage proprietor. Effects Nil.'
According to Irene and Joseph Baron: An inn-keeper (of The Cantref) and later a railwayman.
After the Robertses had taken over the upbringing of his son he went to Pandy where a housekeeper looked after him.
Abergavenny Pubs: The Cantref Inn was owned from 1914–38 by Charles Edwards' Llanfoist Brewery. No publican is listed between 1914 and and 1923, but from 1923 to 1926 it is Joseph Baron.
Grandpa also says: 'Re The Cantref Inn, I have no idea who owned it. I believe it is normal practice for pubs to be owned by a Brewery who let it out to a licencee who is bound over to sell only products bought from the Brewery. [...] To the best of my recollection it was a tied house to the Llanfoist Brewery, (which no longer exists) and the Price family were among the directors of the Brewery Company. Licencees of Public Houses often have other jobs if approved by the Magistrates, I believe certain trades are not acceptable, and the Police will not allow Officers to hold a licence, there are many rules and regulations.'
Rose adds: 'North Street and Orchard St and the Cantref (and Park St where I grew up) were all near the Brecon Rd railway station and the goods yards. Convenient for work. That railway was removed by Dr Beeching in the sixties, but it ran on a bridge across the bottom of Chapel Rd [...]. Orchard St runs across from North St to Chapel Rd.'
Rose: Sometimes Keir Hardy would be at the Cantref - he was a personal friend of my grandfather. Tiny took Dad almost every Sunday morning to see his father at the Cantref. Dad remembers a big glass snake over the fireplace in there. He doesn't know what became of that, although he thinks some things from the Cantref went to the Robertses. Joseph had a penny farthing bike which he kept in a building at the side of the Cantref; eventually he lent it to the Wilsons who had a cycle shop opposite the Town Hall (Mrs Wilson was his sister). Pubs weren't open on Sundays then, but there always seemed to be a lot of people there and they would make a fuss of the kids. Dad knew Joseph was his father, but called him Uncle Joe - Dad doesn't remember anything particular about him - he was just like a normal uncle. There was a trick he used to do on the bar at the Cantref - chop an apple in half with his finger. But when Dad was about 8 or maybe before, Joseph moved from the Cantref.
Rose: Joseph, as well as being a landlord, was also a fitter at the railway sheds. He was at the Cantref Inn after his wife died until their son Joe was about 5. (Joe was being brought up by Joseph’s sister-in-law Eliza and her husband Tom Roberts who was also a railway man - a guard). Joseph enjoyed playing the piano. He was very active in the Labour party and was a friend of Keir Hardy.
While Joseph lived at the Cantref Joe was taken there frequently to visit him and he says his father always wore a grey suit, as most men did in those days. The pub was often open when it shouldn't have been according to the licensing laws - people just went in through the back door instead. His son Joe remembers being taken there by his step-sister regularly on Sunday mornings and being made a fuss of by the customers.
The Cantref had a big yard at front and a coach house at the side with a penny farthing cycle on the wall. It later went to Wilson's cycle shop and was eventually destroyed in a fire there.
After Joseph moved from there (to Pandy presumably, where we believe he was looked after by a married housekeeper, Florrie) Joe hardly saw him. (Joseph's sister-in-law Eliza, who was rearing Joe, 'had very little time for' Joseph.) Joe remembers seeing his father in the street in Abergavenny when he was 10 or 11; he was walking down the main street near the Britannia Inn. They were pleased to see each other and had a short conversation and Joseph gave him half a crown. He is not sure if he ever saw him after that. Years later Joe was talking to a railwayman who said he realized who Joe was by the fact that he resembled his father.
Joseph died in Pandy when Joe was 16 or 17. Joe remembers going to the funeral with Eliza. Joseph was buried in the old cemetery, Abergavenny, with his first wife.