HORSFIELD, George William

1867 - 1950

Born at Ashwell, Hertfordshire on 4 November 1867, eldest son and third child of George Horsfield, a commercial clerk, and his wife Mary Ann née Tooms. Educated at Hitchin, Hertfordshire, Lannion in France and Bonn, Germany. At the age of 16, he became a private secretary to the British Consul at Beirut and two years later took a position in the British Museum Library, subsequently went to Brussels College and whilst teaching English he learnt German. In 1891, Horsfield was the English representative of the Mutual Life Assurance Co., of New York and settled at Whitton Lodge, near Ipswich where, in 1904, appointed a magistrate. An antique dealer of the firm of Horsman Brothers and The East Anglian Gallery in Orchard Street, London with a branch in New York. Captain Commander of the Ipswich Company Territorials at Brecon Hill, Harwich, Essex and Brackenbury Fort, Felixstowe, Suffolk and for his services awarded an OBE. He married in 1891, Florence Marion, daughter of William Goffin of Stoke Tower, Ipswich and had a family of four daughters and in 1911, a 43 year old 'dealer in works of art', living at Whitton with his 44 year old wife Florence and three of their daughters Ellen Marion 19, Cicely Joan 8 and Marjorie Aline 7. He did a great deal of flying and invented the 'Horsfield' range-finder and sometime after the 1914/18 war, when his London warehouse had been destroyed by fire, he sold his Orchard Street premises and carried on with the business in New York. In 1939 a widower and a furniture exporter living at Whitton Lodge, Norwich Road, Ipswich with his daughter Ella Marion (14 November 1891-1943) and for some twenty years was a director of Ipswich wine merchants, Sidgewick and Cowell. A Lfe Member of the Ipswich Art Club 1919-1949 but does not seem to have exhibited. He died at his home Whitton Lodge, Norwich Road, Ipswich on 25 January 1950, aged 82. (Copsey: Suffolk Writers. 2002.)