Dr William Arthur Evelyn

Died aged c. 75

William Arthur Evelyn (4 October 1860 – 6 January 1935) was a distinguished historian of York, England. He championed the preservation and conservation of the city’s architectural and archaeological heritage. He also gathered an extensive collection of paintings, drawings and photographs of the city. The artworks were later sold to York Art Gallery. The Evelyn collection of photographs are now cared for by the Yorkshire Architectural and York Archaeological Society (Y.A.Y.A.S). William Arthur Evelyn was born on 4 October 1860 in Presteigne, Radnorshire. He was the third child of Francis Evelyn and his wife Annie (nee Mawhill). William had an older sister Annie (1857 – 1889) who died young. His older brother Francis Evelyn (1859 – 1910) was a Justice of the Peace and played first-class cricket; a younger brother Edward Evelyn (footballer) (1862 – 1936) played football for Wales before emigrating to the U.S.A. William Arthur Evelyn was educated at Cheltenham Proprietary School, Charterhouse School and Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge. In 1887 after further study at St Thomas’ Hospital, London he became a doctor. He was interested in the possibility of curing pulmonary tuberculosis, or consumption, and, after completing his studies in Vienna, took up a position at the Brompton Consumption Hospital, London. In 1891 Evelyn moved to York to become a G.P. On the 14th of June 1894 Evelyn married Constance Hardman in Reigate parish church. They went on to have 5 children. In 1902 Evelyn joined the Yorkshire Architectural and York Archaeological Society (Y.A.Y.A.S). It had been formed in 1842 to protect and promote the study of ecclesiastical architecture but in more recent years its remit had expanded to include archaeological sites and secular buildings. Evelyn was an active member and acted as treasurer and secretary. From 1931 to his death, he was Vice-president of the society. He was a leader in several of the society’s campaigns including those to protect and preserve the York’s walls, Queen Margaret’s Arch and the city’s oldest houses in Goodramgate. Evelyn was an avid collector of artwork which depicted York and its environs. He used lantern slides of many of his pieces to illustrate public lectures on the history of the city. In 1931 the City of York bought his collection of paintings, drawings and engravings for £3000. These are now housed in York Art Gallery. The glass lantern slide collection, now named the Evelyn collection, was given to Y.A.Y.A.S. in December 1934. Evelyn died on 6 January 1935 at his home in Clifton, York. The Evelyns claimed to be descended from John Evelyn (1620–1706), the diarist.

Wikidata Wikipedia

Commemorated on 1 plaque

Dr. William Arthur Evelyn 1860-1935. A pioneer of conservation of the City of York between 1891 and 1935, he lived in this house from 1910 to 1931. This plaque was erected by York Civic trust and the Yorkshire Architectural and York Archaeological Society in 1985 to mark the fiftieth anniversary of his death.

33 Bootham, York, United Kingdom where they lived