Musgrave, William Ernest (1897-1938)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference

WILLIAM E. MUSGRAVE: born at St. Helens, Lancs, in 1897. He grew up in a home that was truly Christian. It seemed natural to all who knew him that he should become a preacher. Like many of his generation, he passed through the ordeal of active service in the Great War. For eighteen months he was a prisoner of war in Germany, and suffered such hardships that his health was permanently impaired. It was characteristic of his kindly nature that he always spoke in generous terms of the German families with whom he lived while working on the land as a prisoner. 

In 1920 he entered the ministry of the Primitive Methodist Church, and was diligent and faithful in fulfilling the duties of a Methodist minister. Though conscientious to the point of severity with himself, he was generous and tender in his judgment of others. Though he made no pretence to scholarship, he was a keen student. He was greatly beloved by his colleagues and by the people to whom he ministered. The patience and trust he so often urged on others he himself showed, especially in his own suffering. 

His ministry, so brief in years, was marked by a fine devotion and courage. He died on August 25, 1938.


William was born in early 1897 at St. Helens, Lancashire, to parents Thomas Charles Musgrave, a manager for a house furnisher (1911), and Julia Caroline Burgess.

William served in the Royal Engineers before entering the ministry (1915)

He married Mabel Burrows (1897-1987) in the spring of 1927 in the Prescot Registration District, Lancashire. Birth Records identify one child.

  • Alan Burrows (1929-2008)

William died on 25 August 1938 at Rainford, Lancashire.


  • 1921 Wisbech
  • 1922 Hartley
  • 1924 Sudbury
  • 1927 Lynn
  • 1931 Worcester
  • 1935 Birmingham, Belmont


Methodist Minutes 1939/197

W Leary, Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits, 1990

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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