In fact, the expedition was in every way comparable to that celebrated exploration and for as long as there were Spaniards in North America, they at least remembered it. The launching of a Gwladfa, a national home for the Welsh, in western Pennsylvania, was as unexpected as it was abrupt. Its planting was the product of a conjuncture of forces stronger than the will of any individual, however dedicated. Morgan Rhees married a woman of character, charity and courage. She was to become a mighty figure in Philadelphia religion and, in widowhood, raised a large family to a rich and respected adult achievement. The rise of non-conformity was evidently a factor in this crisis. In the last half of the eighteenth century, the dissenting causes, for long stagnant, abruptly entered a phase of rapid growth; Methodism, which was itself to secede from the Anglican Church under persecution, in 1811, swept forward rapidly, particularly in the west and north.