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of the men whose names appear in this book. More than once the eminent qualities appearing and reappearing in inembers of the different branches of the same family have been traced. The cases of Dr. Moulton and Dr. Draper, referred to in the list of scholars, are to the point, as is that also of Mr. T. G. Osborn. The latter gentleman, who was the last head master of the Grove School, is a member of a remarkable family.
At the end of the last century there lived at Rochester a draper, Mr. George Osborn, who eminently illustrated the qualities of industry, mental vigour, unflinching independence, and striking individuality of character, which can be traced in the various other members of the Osborn family. In a cathedral city, with its strong ecclesiastical prejudices and its social exclusiveness, he maintained a consistent Methodist profession. For more than twenty years he was the circuit steward of the Rochester Circuit, and was practically, so far as influence, liberality, and labours are concerned, the father of Methodism there. He was a great admirer and friend of John Newton, of St. Mary's, Wolnooth, in whose church he was married. Three sons were born to this veteran of Rochester, Dr. George Osborn, Rev. James Osborn, and John Osborn, the father of the late head master of the Grove. The individuality of the first-named of these sons needs little illustration, as it is universally recognised. He is almost unique in his intimate acquaintance with Methodist lore and Methodist hymnology; unique in his remarkably choice expository gifts; unique in his powers of debate and in his influence over the Conference at certain times; and unique in his
knowledge of old English theology. Like his father, he has stood as a rock against opposing tendencies. His swordwho shall wield it again? It is the sword of Goliath! His brother James, now deceased, though he did not attain to the same eminence, yet had much individuality of character and gifts. Frequently in his preaching he was remarkably original, being occasionally strikingly quaint. He had an unusually strong will, which made him indisposed to compromise. Like his brother, he was a staunch Protestant. He was deeply interested in foreign missions, in whose advocacy on the platform many of his speeches were seldom surpassed in power and in their effect. The younger brother, John, seems to have possessed many of the family qualities. He succeeded his father in business, and maintained in the same city the same allegiance to Methodism. He was a local preacher of exceptional ability and popularity, and held every office in Methodism that was then open to a layman. Having retired from business, he went to live at St. Austell, in Cornwall, where he died in 1882, at the age of seventy-one. Mr. T. G. Osborn, who is the son of the last-named veteran, is on his mother's side descended from a still older Methodist family. His mother's grandfather had been Mr. Wesley's host, and occasionally was his escort in Cornwall. His grandmother was born at the time of one of Mr. Wesley's visits, and on the day of her birth received Wesley's blessing in his arms. Her sister was received into society by John Wesley himself, and received several tickets from him, and lived in the enjoyment of all her faculties to the age of ninety-nine. Mr. T. G. Osborn's maternal grandfather was
the Rev. T. Rogers, who entered the Wesleyan ministry in 1799, and died in 1864.
The subject of this notice received his early education at the school of Mr. Hathaway at Rochester, and afterwards went to Wesley College, Sheffield, whose principal was then Mr. (now Dr.) Shera. In 1862 he obtained an open scholarship at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, and proceeded to his degree in mathematical honours as tenth wrangler in 1866. After being mathematical master at Durham Grammar School for a short time, he went to Kingswood to supply a temporary vacancy in 1866, and was subsequently appointed head master by the Conference. In 1875 the two schools were “concentrated in system though not in site,” and he was appointed head master of Woodhouse Grove, as well as of Kingswood. He was elected a Fellow of his college at Cambridge, at Christmas, 1871, the fellowship expiring according to rule in December, 1881. He was married in 1869 to the youngest daughter of the late Rev. F. A. West, formerly governor of Kingswood School, and of whom the reader will find some account amongst the names of scholars in the latter part of this book. Not every scholar succeeds as a practical administrator, or as an efficient teacher of boys. Mr. T. G. Osborn is an exception to the many learned failures of practical life. He has proved himself to be a successful and popular head master. The list of the honours at the Oxford, Cambridge, and London Universities taken by Kingswood and Woodhouse Grove boys, will bear comparison with any other school list in the kingdom. Mr. Osborn has turned out both great mathematicians and great classics, and has also successfully
trained adepts in natural philosophy. At the final examinations (1884) at Oxford and Cambridge, one Kingswood pupil came out second wrangler; another took a high place in the classical tripos, and another took a valuable scholarship for proficiency in science. At the same time, it is pleasant to say that Mr. Osborn has not spent all the wealth of his experience on the brilliant boys, but has tried to secure efficiency throughout the school. This is not always the case with head masters. Those who know Mr. Osborn can trace in him much of the decision of character and variety of ability which have been noticed in the other members of the family. The George Osborn of Rochester of eighty years ago lives again in many points in the youngest representative of the family now reigning at Kingswood. He has also, like his father, given time and energy to the service of Methodism, having been circuit steward in Bath for three years, and he has been a local preacher for a long period. He has also been a member of the Mixed Conference from its beginning, having been twice elected by his district meeting, and twice by the Conference as one of the eighteen representatives who are chosen by them for a term of three years.
Mr. Osborn was also elected a representative to the (Ecumenical Conference in 1881, where he read a paper on Higher Education, which was very well received, and is published in the Transactions of that Conference. He has published an edition of Milton's “Areopagitica, with Notes” (Longmans), which has met with success, and is a good deal used in schools and colleges for examination purposes, &c.
THE uses of English Public Schools are many. One
- is to impart a varied mental culture. Another is that which is suggested by the celebrated saying of Wellington, that “Waterloo was won upon the playing grounds of Eton.” English public school life helps to form a manly character, self-reliance, humility, and respect for the opinions of others, and to prepare for the difficulties that must be encountered in the larger world outside. Woodhouse Grove has not failed in these uses of public schools. Not only can we point to individual instances of boys educated there who have attained high positions at the bar, have become eminent in the legal, medical, and academic professions, and have distinguished themselves in the House of Commons as well as in the pulpit; but we may point to the whole body of those who have attained to mature life, and may shew that many are not only in a respectable position of business, but have even reached a high social position in the world. In the competition and struggle which surrounds them they have held their own, and many of them under adverse circumstances. Very few of them have had the benefit of wealthy parents to advance their interests in life, and many have had no property