7 peculiar Gwent links with the USA
Updated 3:26pm Friday 4th July 2014 in News
ON THE 4th of July, we bring you eight Gwent connections to the land of the free and the home of the brave.
Do you know of any bizarre links from this part of Wales with the USA? Let us know.
1. World heavyweight champion boxer Joe Louis
Joe Louis, is said to have boxed an exhibition bout at Rodney Parade. The World Heavyweight Champion from 1937 to 1949 was based in Newport during the war while serving with the US Army.
2. Johny Weismuller - Tarzan and star of Pontypool swimming gala
During the 1920’s Tarzan actor and US Olympic medallist Johny Weismuller took part in a swimming event at Nant-y-Gollen Ponds in Pontypool.
3. Newport's poet WH Davies - the American supertramp
Newport poet WH Davies based his book 'The Autobiography of a Super-Tramp', on his time in the USA between 1893 and 1899. He later lost his leg while jumping from a freight train that was crossing North America.
4. Captain America filmed in Caerwent
The big-screen adaptation of the popular Marvel comic character it starred Samuel L Jackson, Tommy Lee Jones and Chris Evans and was filmed at the MoD site in Caerwent. More..
5. Rev Morgan Edwards, founder of Brown University
Pontypool minister Morgan Edwards, was a joint founder of Ivy League institution, Brown University.
In 1766 the Rev Edwards returned to Europe to raise funds for the planned university, then called The College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.
During a year and a half in Great Britain and Ireland, he raised the equivalent of $4,300,including donations from the likes of founding fathers Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Penn, who gave $50 or $100 apiece.
6. Chartist marcher and veteran of the Mexican war, John Rees
One of the Chartists who marched on Newport fought in the Texan war against Mexico in the 1830s - the same war which saw the famous Battle of the Alamo.
John Rees was one of only 28 survivors of a Mexican massacre. The native of Merthyr Tydfil returned to Wales to take part in the ill-fated march in 1839. He escaped and made his way back to the USA, eventually settling in California.
7. American pioneer Daniel Boone
American pioneer, explorer, and frontiersman whose frontier exploits made him one of the first folk heroes of the United States.
Many believe Daniel's mother, Sarah Morgan, is descended from Gwent stock. Her ancestral roots allegedly extend back to Pencoed Castle in Llandevaud.