David Willson

David Willson, religious leader (b in Dutchess County, NY 7 June 1778; d at Sharon, Canada W 16 Jan 1866). Having disagreed with the Quakers in 1812, he formed his own sect, the Children of Peace, promoting peace, love and equality among all people.

Willson, David

David Willson, religious leader (b in Dutchess County, NY 7 June 1778; d at Sharon, Canada W 16 Jan 1866). Having disagreed with the Quakers in 1812, he formed his own sect, the Children of Peace, promoting peace, love and equality among all people. Like other dissident leaders of his time, he turned a backwoods settlement into a cohesive community, strong in faith, charitable and dedicated to education. Lovers of music, they had a band, a choir and the oldest extant barrel organ built in Upper Canada. Their temple is an architectural gem, rich in symbolism. Willson wrote many hymns and sermons, and some political treatises, especially around the time of the 1837 Rebellion.