Pearsall Book Vol. II, pg. 672

Robert Pearsall says:-

I was educated at the Islington Proprietary School, Dr. Jackson the Head Master, afterwards Bishop of London. I was there six years and then articled to Sir Arthur Blomfield, Archt. (Son of the Bishop of London.) After examination I was admitted student of the Royal Academy, 17 July, 1871, Landseer, brother of Sir Edwin Landseer, the famous animal painter. I started in practise on my own account in 1873 and in 1879 I was appointed Architect in the Fire Brigade Office, Metropolitan Board of Works and when the London County Council succeeded the M.B.W. I was made Architect to the Brigade. After 23 years service, I was pensioned on the 28 March 1902. I have since continued to work privately at my profession and have done a good deal until the War came and then everything was closed down.

In 1872, I joined the Artists V. Corps and served three years in C. Company. In 1877, April 28th, I was gazetted lieutenant in the 7th Surrey Rifle V. Corps. Altogether I served five years but I saw no fighting.

In 1873, I made working drawings for Col. Mann (an American) of his Boudoir Sleeping Cars (Wagon lits) which he had lithographed and published in Paris. Sleeping Cars (Wagon lits) which he had lithographed and published in Paris. The first car made was used to bring the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh from St. Petersburgh to Flushing after their marriage. I had to design the carriages, 3 different kinds, from the roughest pen and ink sketches, and therefore had to get particulars by measuring and plotting the construction from existing railway carriages, no easy matter for me an architect and not an engineer.

Robert Pearsall is entirely too matter-of-fact in his statement concerning himself. He is a life-member of the British Museum, an honor conferred because of his distinquished ability as an artist and architect. For years he has been a member of the London Committee on Archaeology and for the Perservation of Ancient Monuments, officially known as The Committee for the Survey of the Memorials of Greater London. In connection with this work he has held a leading part.

He is a designer of recognized ability; among other things he made the plates for the Peshall-Pearsall coats-of-arms which appear in this family history. He is a genelogist of not only untiring zeal but remarkable accuracy. No sham or pretense of ancestry escapes his careful scrutiny. So well established and so high is his reputation in this line of work, that private family records and chartularies are freely and willingly placed at his inspection, for a pedigree which bears his approval passes current, not only generally, but among the most learned and exacting researchers in England.

He is a man of influence in England. At a time when all genealogical work was prohibited the governement censor at his request permitted our correspondence to continue so that this present family history might be completed. He is also a scholar of unusual attainments. During the course of our researches, he was able to prove to the authorites of the British Museum, with the concurrece of its own scholars, that in more than one instance even their great speical experts had failed to comprehend the exact meaning of old medieval Latin-French documents.

He is a lovable and companionable man. The writer can bear testimony that the correspondence with him has been a delight. It seems strange to have a feeling of deep affection for an individual whom one has never seen or spoken to, yet such is the case in the present instance, and it will be with exceeding regret to the writer that the last letter to him shall have been written. In order that there might be some semblance of personal acquaintance he kindly sent the writer his photograph and so that his American cousins may know him. (note:picture is too dark to scan)

In conclusion, the writer has been called upon in the course of the preparation of this family on several occasions to acknowledge the help of those who, having successfully worked in the field of their special branch of the family, yet gave up their own gleanings in order that the general work might be made a complete whole. While the same duty of acknowledgement now devolves upon the writer with respect to Robert Pearsall, to whom special credit is due for the contributions that he made to sections eight to twelve of chapter eighteen, which relate more particularly to his branch of the family, as well as for his great assistance in the field work which brought so many priceless records from the public offices to the end that they might appear in this family history, nevertheless, there is an inadequacy of words at the writer's command to fully express the obligation that the family owes to him for the perfection of the English section of the book. He was kind enough to say that what the writer had accomplished was colossal and beyond anything he had ever seen in this line of work; nevertheless, it is due to Robert Pearsall to say that his contributions to this general history comprehended among others a number of exceedingly important special records, mostly obtained from private collections of deeds, and without which the pedigree of the family could not have been made a complete inter-related whole.

Then again his own line was an important link in the chain, and his researches in this particular, from their accuracy, completeness and fullness of detail, command the admiration of all who are seekers after genealogical truth, and workers in the art of determining the inheritance of ancestral character, and finally one cannot help admire his unbounded enthusiasm. In a letter received just as the manuscript of the book was being closed he said that he was sending a lot of new matter although he supposed it was too late for the book and added that he so longed to see, read and enjoy it. Incidentally he spoke of his summer trip to visit all the places in Staffordshire that the writer had written to him about, and then the writer felt called upon to say, what a glorious trip that will be. It is to be hoped that every member of the family who can afford it will, like Robert Pearsall, travel back along the footsteps of our ancestors in England.

Robert Pearsall of Teddington, Middlesex, England, son of Henry Robert Pearsall, was born March 3, 1852 at Orgeon Terrace, Peckham Rye, co. Surrey. He married April 2, 1878, Libbie Florence Dezill, daughter of Charles Antoine Ferdinand Dezille of Calais, France. She was born June 19, 1859; died January 1, 1899.

  1. Estelle Maud Pearsall, born August 30, 1879; died at Bristol, July 31, 1916, unmarried.
  2. Robert Humphrey Pearsall, born February 9, 1881; married June 1, 1910, Lilly Beatrice, only child of Captain George Donald Donald.
    1. Donald Humphrey Pearsall, born March 10, 1911 at Twickenham.
  3. Gerald Clifford Swinnerton Pearsall, born April 21, 1882; unmarried.


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