Antur Waunfawr, Bryn Pistyll
John Evans Memorial
John Thomas Evans
Waunfawr 1770 - New Orleans 1799
Welsh explorer who produced an early map of the Missouri River
Standing stone with a bas-relief of a man, with a low boat in front of him, representing the boat bringing John Evans' soul back to Waunfawr. John Evans is portrayed as The Lonely Man of the Mandan legend.
There are other allusions to the sculpture around the garden; a stream of slate along the wall following the course of the stream below, and slates carved by local children and workers at the Antur, done in workshops with the sculptor, portraying various aspects of John Evans' story.
In the early 1790s there was an upsurge of interest in Wales in the story of Madog having discovered America, and there were persistent rumours in North America of the existence of a tribe of Welsh Indians, identified with the Mandan. Iolo Morgannwg had originally intended to explore the Missouri to discover these Welsh Indians and John Evans was to have gone with him. However Iolo withdrew from the expedition and John Evans embarked for the United States alone, arriving in Baltimore in October 1792. In the spring of 1793 he made his way to St. Louis in Spanish Louisiana, where he was imprisoned for a while on suspicion of being a spy.
In April 1795 he set off on an expedition with Spanish backing to explore the Missouri and to try to discover a route to the Pacific Ocean from its headwaters. He found the Mandan in 1796, and spent the winter with them before returning to St. Louis in 1797. However he found no trace of Welsh speakers among them. He had travelled 1,800 miles up the Missouri from its confluence with the Mississippi, and he produced a map showing the course of the river. This map, passed on by Thomas Jefferson was later used by the Lewis and Clark Expedition.
- Meic Watts,
Location (N 53°6'39" - W 4°12'0")
Item Code: gbwa148; Photograph: 30 July 2012
Of each statue we made photos from various angles and also detail photos of the various texts.
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© Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt