From its establishment in 1859 until its sale in 1970, the family business of Gregor Bros. (Timber Importers) grew into a firm with premises in Aberdare and Swansea, sawmills in Fishguard, and retail shops in Cardigan, Haverfordwest and Swansea. The original 'Gregor Brothers' were from Cornwall, with ancestors listed in the baptismal registers of Gwennap parish church dating back to 1679. Among these ancestors was Rev. William Gregor' (1761-1817), who in 1790 discovered the element that we now call Titanium as a black magnetic sand from the stream of Tregonwell Mill in the parish of Manaccan. His results were published the following year when he first called the element Menachite (it was also known as Gregorite), but it was not successfully isolated until 1910. The Royal Cornwall Museum in Truro displays a specimen of Titanium which William Gregor presented to the Royal Geological Society of Cornwall. From 1793 until his death Gregor was vicar of Creed, a small parish near Truro, where is displayed a copy of John Hoppner's portrait of him (the original hangs in the Tioxide Group's head office in Hammersmith). His son, also a William Gregor, was born in St Agnes, Cornwall in 1793, and moved to Swansea, where Pearse's 1854 Directory lists him as manager of Weig Fach colliery, and residing at 18 High Street. He died at 13 Northampton Place in 1874: of his ten children the eighth and tenth, Edwin and Joseph, were the brothers who started the timber firm. Hoppner's portrait ofWilliam Gregor. TITANIUM TO TIMBER: THE GREGORS GARY GREGOR In 1857 Joseph Gregor was in business as a timber merchant at Aberdare, managing the firm Gregor and Davies, which also had a yard at Swansea. At that time his brother Edwin was working in some unknown capacity in Manchester. Writing to his son Joseph on 14 April 1859, William Gregor stated that 'the busi- ness of Gregor and Davies is doing well', and also referred to his eldest son (yet another William) being connected with the business. It seems that the second William Gregor, father of Edwin and Joseph, was the Gregor in the firm Gregor and Davies. In a letter of 17 May 1859 William Gregor informed his youngest son Joseph that he had decided to dissolve the partnership with Davies. Evidently Davies survived the severance,