Sir George Williams – Founder of the YMCA

George Williams

George Williams was born in Somerset, England, on 11 October 1821. In 1836 he moved to London to work as an apprentice to a Draper, and by 1841 was himself working as a Draper. He stayed in the accommodation provided by the firm in the same building, and became one of the 150,000 young men who had flooded into the city of London.

On 6th June 1844, George Williams, together with ten Christian young men, established the YMCA. “Our object is the improvement of the spiritual condition of the young men engaged in houses of business, by the formation of Bible classes, family and social prayer meetings, mutual improvement societies, or any other spiritual agency.”

Williams was knighted by Queen Victoria in 1894, and after his death was commemorated with a stained-glass window in the nave of Westminster Abbey. Sir George Williams is buried in St. Paul’s Cathedral.

Shuray Farm, birthplace of G. Williams

Dulverton: George Williams’s church & school

George Williams attended the Methodist church in Bridgewater

Room of the first YMCA meetings, 1844, London

George Williams in his 30s

George Williams’ chair at YMCA London

Lady Williams, Sir George Williams

Chest containing a letter from the City of London recognising George Williams

Sir George Williams

1894 World Conference in London, UK

YMCA Jubilee, London, 1894 – George Williams and over 1000 people

George Williams’ house, London

George Williams’ drapers company, London

George Williams’ tomb, St. Paul’s Cathedral crypt, London

George Williams’ tomb, St. Paul’s Cathedral crypt, London

St. Paul’s Cathedral, London – George Williams’ funeral