Wilson, George Henry (1873-1958)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1925
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1925

Early years

George was born in 1873 at Little Hucklow, Derbyshire, to parents George and Martha. George, senior, is described in the 1881 census as a farmer of 35 acres, grocer and lead miner. Later, in Buxton, he worked as a fruit and fish dealer.

The family moved to Buxton when George was thirteen. He became a member of the London Road Church, Buxton, when he was sixteen years old. He joined a Mission Band led by Mr W Bradbury. George was one of the first to have the privilege of a three-year course at Hartley College to prepare for the ministry.


George served as District Sunday School and Examinations Secretary.

George became well-known for his discoveries at Beeston Tors. There he completed the exploration of a little known cave and discovered pottery and coins of the Saxon and Celtic period. He was also a Fellow of the Royal Horticultural Society. George found an absorbing interest in the archaeology and geology of the Peak District, and was the founder and first president of the Peakland Archaeological Society, and a university extension lecturer on the subject.

His obituary records that George’s fruitful ministry combined the fervency and challenge of the dedicated preacher with the caring and compassion of the true friend in Christ. He was a man of deep conviction and warm sympathy, and had a passionate concern for the Kingdom of God.


George married Leonora Carrick Foster (1880-1962) in early 1901 at Hull, Yorkshire. Leonora was a daughter of Rev John Foster. Records identify five children.

  • George Ernest (b abt1902) – a local preacher and scout-master (1925); a factory manager (1962)
  • Winifred Mary (b abt1904)
  • Kathleen Leonora (b1906)
  • Gwendoline Joan (b1908)
  • John Foster (b1919) – a social worker (1962)

George died on 21 February 1958 at Chapel en le Frith, Derbyshire.


  • Hartley
  • 1894 Scarborough II
  • 1900 Manchester III
  • 1903 Patrington
  • 1907 Lincoln I
  • 1912 Knowlwood
  • 1916 Nottingham IV
  • 1920 Manchester XII
  • 1925 Bakewell
  • 1930 Scarborough II
  • 1934 Belper
  • 1937 Buxton (Sup)


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1925/594

Methodist Minutes 1958/189

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers


Comments about this page

  • Th fifth child of George and Leonard Wilson , John, was blinded in a shool chemistry accident . He was to become a pioneer in the irradication of blindness as well as the establisher of methods for the prevention of blindness and the founder of the charity that is now known as Sight Savers. He also founded a charity called Impact which among others things uses the railway network in India to bring hospital facilities to those suffering from various physical impediments. There is also a school in India named after him, the Sir John Wilson School. I am the Revd David James, a grandson of Revd George Wilson. This brief note may serve as an indication of the remarkable contribution that has come from many Primitive Methodist households

    By Revd David James (15/05/2019)

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