Edward Francis Wilson

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Edward Francis Wilson
Reverand Edward Francis Wilson headshot.jpg
Rev. E.F. Wilson, circa 1880
Born (1844-12-07)December 7, 1844
Islington, England
Died May 11, 1915(1915-05-11) (aged 70)
Salt Spring Island, British Columbia, Canada
Nationality British, Canadian
Alma mater Huron College
Occupation missionary
Spouse(s) Frances Spooner
Parent(s) Daniel Wilson and Lucy Sarah Atkins
Church Church of England, Anglican Church of Canada
Ordained 1867 December 22

The Rev Edward Francis Wilson (7 December 1844 – 11 May 1915) was a prominent Canadian Anglican missionary and clergyman in the second half of the 19th century.[1]


Edward Francis Wilson (also known as E.F. Wilson) was born in Islington, England on December 7, 1844 to Daniel Frederick Wilson and Lucy Sarah Atkins. His grandfather was Daniel Wilson the Church of England Bishop of Calcutta. Wilson emigrated to Canada in 1865 with ambitions of becoming a farmer. However, upon his arrival he studied at Huron College in London, Ontario with the ambition of becoming a missionary in Canada. He was ordained as a deacon on December 1867 in England. He returned to Huron as part of the Church Missionary Society.

Wilson went on to work as a missionary to Indigenous communities in Sarnia, Sault Ste Marie, and surrounding areas. Wilson was the founding principal of the Shingwauk Indian Residential School from 1873 until 1892 when he retired from missionary work and moved to British Columbia.[2] He was also responsible for the construction of schools in Batchawana Bay, Nipigon, Elkhorn, Manitoba, and Medicine Hat.[3] In 1894 he moved to Salt Spring Island and worked as a pastor to the local community. He died in Victoria, British Columbia in 1915.

A cairn commemorating Wilson and his work with the Shingwauk Home currently sits on the front lawn of Algoma University.[3]


In addition to his missionary work Wilson was a prolific writer and was also responsible for the publication of a number of missionary journals. His work typically appeared under his own name. However, in the 1890s articles appeared in the Canadian Indian under the pen name Fair Play which are believed to have also been written by Wilson.[1]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ a b Nock, David A. (1998). "Wilson, Edward Francis". Dictionary of Canadian Biography. University of Toronto. Retrieved April 13, 2016. 
  2. ^ Wilson, Edward F. (1886). Missionary Work Among The Ojebway Indians. London: Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge. 
  3. ^ a b From Teaching Wigwam to Shingwauk University. Algoma University, Sault Ste Marie, Ontario, Canada: Shingwauk Project. 1992. p. 4.