More on G.S.V. Wills

Further to the earlier post about G.S.V. Wills, I am posting a few photographs from his self-published work, The Works of George S. V. Wills and The Westminster College of Chemistry and Pharmacy (dated February 14, 1899). (Note: the initials G.S.V. stand for George Sampson Valentine; George for his grandfather George Wills, Sampson for his great grandfather Sampson Wills, and Valentine because he was born on Valentine’s Day.) According to his preface, the occasion for writing the book was four-fold: he was about to celebrate “his Jubilee Birthday, his Silver Wedding Anniversary, the coming of age of his only son, and the 25th year of the establishment of the Westminster College”.

As time goes on, I will endeavor to scan the book in its entirety for posting on this blog (the copyright is long expired). But for now, here are the few photographs that appear in the book. The first is of GSV Wills with his family. Unfortunately there are no explanations as to who’s who, though he does mention earlier in the text that he married a “Miss Goode” (September 30, 1874) so we can presume that she is seated to his right. Update (12/7/11): from details kindly supplied by Colin Newton, we can do our best to piece together who’s who. Front row: Lucy A. (Goode) Wills, Beatrice A. Wills (b. 1888), G.S.V. Wills. Rear: Son Harry Sampson Wills (b. 1878) is surrounded by his sisters Georgina (b. 1876), Edith (b. 1880), and Lillian Maude (b. 1882). Unfortunately, the sisters are so close in age, it’s hard to guess which daughter is which.

Next are two of the homes he resided in. The first one pictured was located in Southwark. From there, the book says he “removed to Tulse Hill and thence South Croydon”. The other photo is of the South Croydon house. I always wonder whether such buildings are still standing. On a lark, I went on Google Streetview and quickly came upon a house at 27 Croham Road CR2 next to an embankment. I’d be willing to bet that this was GSV Wills’ home. Take a look and see what you think. Even the chimneys of the house next door look identical to those in the book’s photo. I think I have found the one in Southwark as well. Go on Google Streetview to the corner of St. George’s Road and Gladstone Road. It is most definitely the same house. Amazing how we can see what streets look like half way around the world!!!

Lastly, I am including an obituary notice dated May 6, 1932, that I found tucked in the back of the book.

GSV Wills Family

GSV Wills House in Southwark

GSV Wills House in South Croydon

GSV Wills obituary notice, 6 May 1932

Categories: London, Obituaries, South Croydon, London, Southwark, London, Wills | 10 Comments

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10 thoughts on “More on G.S.V. Wills

  1. colin

    Fabulous – so useful and fascinating! Keep it coming – do you have a photo of Jabez his father?

    Like

    • Thanks, Colin! Unfortunately, no, I don’t have a photo of Jabez. The little book contains just that photo of the immediate family. I see from your tree that he was still around in 1891, so there could well be photo or two out there somewhere. Hopefully someone will share it with us some day!

      Like

  2. David Gilbert

    The Mr.D (David) Pratt referred to in the list of mourners as a nephew I believe to be the same family member I was told about who shot President Verwoed (?) of South Africa. It was said that he suffered from epilepsy, but other documents claim this was a diplomatic cover-up. Although I haven’t retained the relevant documents, an internet search for David Pratt lists verious newspaper reports plus a Wikipaedia entry.

    Like

  3. Richard Courtiour

    Hi. I have googled the name G.S.V Wills for information on some antique microscope slides I currently have for sale, listed on ebay. I came across your blog and was greatful for the information you have uncovered. I thought the microscope slides may be of interest to you as they are probably in George`s own handwriting.

    Like

    • Thanks for the heads up on that. If you want to send me a link to the ebay listing for your slides (use my address: chipsoff @ gmail dot com), I will forward it to some of GSV Wills’ direct descendants. I think they will be interested. If you can say how you came across them, they would probably be interested in that too.

      Like

      • Richard Courtiour

        Hi. Sorry but I`ve only just come across your response. I will send link to your email address, I hope it isn`t too late to get the information to those who may be interested

        Like

  4. Richard Courtiour

    I`m not sure email is getting through to you. Link to ebay listing is
    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/320927723592?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1558.l2649

    If not, just type in microscope slide to ebay title bar. Regards Rich

    Like

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