William Eglington 1858 - 1933
British Spiritualist and Medium

WILLIAM EGLINGTON/EGLINTON - British Spiritualist and Medium

Birth: July 10th 1858 at Islington London
Death: March 10th 1933 at Bromley Kent

There is much written on the internet and in publication regarding William Eglington, his rise to fame, the influential circles he moved within and his final exposure as a fake. However there is nothing to say who he actually was, his family, where he came from and what happened to him in his later years.

This is who I think he is:- He was born Louis William Eglinton in 1858 at Islington the son of Henry Eglinton a Printer Compositor from Ashbourne, Derbyshire and his wife Eliza Eaton Bryan Wise of Islington Middlesex. Below is a timeline starting with his grandparents.....

William’s grandparents
1810: May 24 – Marriage at Ashbourne Derbyshire
John Eglington married Elizabeth White

William’s (Louis) father
1827: Nov 21 – Baptism at Ashbourne, Derbyshire
Henry Eglington son of John Eglington and his wife Elizabeth
Henry’s brother ‘William Eglinton’ was baptised on April 7th 1820, same place

1851: Census Goswell Street St Lukes
William Eglington – Head – age 31 1820 - Painter & Stationer – Derbyshire
Elizabeth Eglington – Wife – age 27 - Cardiff, Glamorgan, Wales
Henry Eglington – Brother – single – age 23 1828 - Assistant Compositor – Derbyshire - William's (Louis) Father
Henry S Thelken - ? – single – age 21 – Apprentice – Derbyshire
Mary A Powele – Servant – age 19 - London, Middlesex

1854: Marriage record – Henry Eglington married Eliza Eaton Bryan Wise at Islington – Mar quarter (1b 277)

1858: Birth record – Louis William Eglington at Islington – Sep quarter (1b 244)

Recorded as Edmington
1861: Census – 18 Dean Street Islington
Henry Eglington – Head – age 33 - Printer Compositor - Ashbourne, Derbyshire
Eliza E Eglington – Wife – age 34 1827 - Islington, Middlesex
Henry Eglington – Son – age 8 - Islington, Middlesex
Hellen Eglington – Dau – age 5 - Islington, Middlesex
Louis W Eglinton – Son – age 2 - Islington, Middlesex
Emily Eglington – Dau – age 1 - Islington, Middlesex
Joseph Hickley – Boarder – single – age 37 - Printer Compositor - Leicester, Leicestershire

1871: Census - 45 Westmorland Place St Leonard
Henry Eglington – Head – age 43 – Compositor - Derbyshire
Eliza Eglington – Wife – age 45 – Middlesex
Henry Eglington – Son – age 17 – Pressman - Middlesex
William Eglington – Son – age 12 - Pressman Middlesex
Charles Eglington – Son – age 9 - Middlesex
Ellen Eglington – Dau – age 15 - Middlesex
Emily Eglington – Dau – age 10 - Middlesex
Ernest Eglinton – Son – age 3 weeks - Middlesex
Maria Nive – Lodger – single - age 41 – Governess – Middlesex
John Seymour – Lodger – single – age 50 – Silversmith – Looks like Ireland
James Seymour – Lodger – single – age 48 – Compositor – Looks like Ireland
Catherine Seymour – Lodger – single – age 53 – Bonnet Maker – Looks like Ireland
Jane Seymour – Lodger – single – age 51 – Dressmaker - Looks like Ireland

William’s mother died
1873: Death record – Eliza Eglington at Shoreditch – Sep quarter (1c 68) age 45 - Is this where William's interest in the spirit world started?

William first heard of Spiritualism in February 1874 at a debate in the Hall of Science, London, between a Dr. Sexton and a Mr. Foote - William's father formed a home circle more out of curiosity. William was not amused and placed cards with the sarcastic inscription on the door. He was told by his father to either join the circle or leave the house during the investigation. William elected to join in and the rest is history as William himself passed into trance for the first time, and in a few months' time very strong phenomena developed under the guidance of a spirit calling himself "Joey Sandy.'' Eighteen months later another guide, "Ernest,'' appeared, and very good materializations were obtained in moonlight. The news of William's powers soon spread The earliest record of his séances was published in The Medium for September 1875. At the end of the year, several séances were given to the Dalston Association of Spiritualists, which later elected him an honorary member.

1881: Census - No record found for William as he was out of the country....
1881: Feb - William Eglinton sailed for New York and remained in the United States until the middle of May.

Meanwhile his father was here
1881: Census – St James House Walthamstow
Henry Eglington – Head – widower - age 53 - Printer Overman - Ashbourne, Derbyshire
Charles Eglington – Son – age 19 - Printer Compositor - Islington, Middlesex
Ernest Eglington – Son – age 10 – Scholar - Hoxton, Middlesex
Edwin Pratt – Boarder Head – married – age 48 – Carpenter - Hoxton, Middlesex
Harriett Pratt – Wife – age 46 - Kempston, Bedfordshire
Ellen Pratt – Dau – single – age 23 - Bedford, Bedfordshire
Minnie Pratt – Dau – age 12 – Scholar - Hoxton, Middlesex
Annie Pratt – Dau – age 6 – Scholar - Hoxton, Middlesex
Walter Pratt – Son – age 4 – Scholar - Walthamstow, Essex

William’s father remarried
1882: Marriage record – Henry Eglington married Mary Cluley at Edmonton – Dec quarter (3a 339)

1891: Census - No record found for William was he out of the country?

Meanwhile his father was here
1891: Census - Stanbridge House, Canning Crescent, Tottenham, Edmonton, Middlesex
Henry Eglington – Head – age 63 - Retired Printer - Ashbourne, Derbyshire
Mary Eglington – Wife – age 58 - Shareshill, Staffordshire
Charles Eglington – Son – single – age 29 - Book Publisher - Islington, Middlesex
Lucy Crutchley – Sisterlaw – single – age 47 - Shareshill, Staffordshire

This appears to be William!!
1901: Census - 31, Longlands Road, Village, Bexley, Dartford, Kent,
William Eglington – Head – age 42 - Newspaper Proprietor - Hornsey, Middlesex – Hornsey was part of the Islington district
* Lila Eglington – Wife – age 45 1856 - Maidstone, Kent
Ruth Cox – Servant – single – age 22 - Cook Domestic - Stamford, Bedfordshire
Caroline Johnson – Servant – single – age 23 - Housemaid Domestic - Bexley, Kent
* No marriage record is found for William & Lila – were they actually married?
Did they marry aboard although no death record is foud for her either under the name of Lila Eglington

Meanwhile his father was here
1901: Census - 22, Sidney Road, Wood Green, Edmonton, Middlesex
Henry Eglington – Head – age 73 - Retired Painter - Ashbourne, Derbyshire
Mary Eglington – Wife – age 68 - Laney Green, Staffordshire

1911: Census - 2 Whitehall Ray Park Avenue Maidenhead, Maidenhead, Berkshire
William Eglington – Head – age 52 - News Paper Proprietor - Hornsey London
Lila Eglington – Wife – age 51 1860 - Maidstone Kent
Sophia Player – Servant – single – age 48 – Cook - Tipperary Ireland
Winfred Player – Servant – age 16 – Housemaid - Plumstead Kent
Number of years married, LEFT BLANK– maybe they were not married!!! - No children
Number of rooms Five

1922: Dec 12 – Bucks Herald - PRESTWOOD.
PERSONAL — Mr William Eglington, who is well-known in literary circles, has we learn, recently taken up his residence at The Long Platt, Prestwood, which he has temporarily rented, pending his permanently settling in the district. He is the editor and proprietor of "The British Export Gazette" and other important publications devoted to the export trade, and until lately resided for many years at Maidenhead. He has been a great traveller and big game hunter, and is the possessor of one of the finest collection of trophies in the kingdom. According to "Who's Who," Mr Eglington is the author of "The Sportsman in South Africa." a standard work on the subject, and was at one time Chairman of the Anglo-African Writers Club.

EGLINGTON, WILLIAM, Editor and Proprietor of " The British Export Gazette," " The British and South African Export Gazette," &c., 33 to 35, Eastcheap, London, E.C. Hours of Business: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Established in 1892 by William Eglington. Business: Editor and Proprietor of "The British Export Gazette."Claims that it is the leading Export Journal, and "The British and South African Export Gazette" to be the only old-established Anglo-African Commercial journal published. Branches: Throughout the world. Originally proprietor of the "New Age," "The Tattler," &c. Connection: World-wide. Telephone: No. 2619 Avenue, London. Telegraphic Address: "Inkoos, London." Code: A B C (5th Edition). Bankers: London and Joint Stock Bank, Ltd.

The last reports on William Eglinton in the psychic Press concerned his visit in 1887 to Russia and his reception by Alexander III. He married on his return and, having become independent, retired from medium ship and spiritualism. He broke with his friends, but was not forgotten by them. They re-discovered him on the pinnacle of his new life. I was shown the Who is Who of 1929, and I studied certain strange agreements of particulars. It may come as a shock to many in Fleet Street to discover that, according to all these indications, William Eglington, one-time editor and chief proprietor of the British Export Gazette, of the British South African Export Gazette, of The New Age and of the Tatler, was none other than William Eglinton, the famous medium.

1933: Death record – William Eglington at Bromley – Mar quarter (2a 1012) age 75 (1858)

No death record is found for Lila under the surname of Eglington or Eglinton
No birth record can be found for Lila either in the Maidstone area
From all accounts William and Lila appear not to have ever married maybe because Lila was still married to someone else?



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