John Taylor Lyon, Missioner to the Deaf in Stockton 1918-26
By H Dominic W Stiles, on 18 January 2013
John Taylor Lyon became missioner superintendent to the South Durham and Cleveland Mission to the Deaf and Dumb, in 1918. Based in Stockton-on-Tees, he travelled widely in his area, trying to keep in touch with the local deaf people. His brief obituary – more of a notice that he had died – gives us little information, but from online records I can say he was 57 when he died, so was born around 1869. It says, “His conciliatory attitude and spiritual mindedness welded the Mission into one united family, while his never failing tact was always available for settling the slight differences of opinion which are inseparable from all organisations.”
I know he was married, and they had a son, Frank Taylor Lyon, and he was living at 9 West End Terrace, Yarm Road when he died, but I cannot find either of them in the online census record. If you can, please do comment below. There may be a record of him in the local mission’s annual reports, or in local archives, however we have hardly anything – only some account sheets from the 1950s.
He died on 1st December, 1926 after some years of ill-health.
Note: While looking for something else my eye was caught by the same name, a J.T. Lyon of Aberdeen, playing as a fullback for Scotland in the second Deaf football international between England and Scotland, on 2nd April 1892. Is this the same person? It is! He was a pupil I have discovered, at Donaldson’s School (from information on our old index cards). The game, which was played on the West Manchester football ground, had a remarkable 2,500 spectators. The game was 3-2 at half time, then despite fog they came out for the second half and England scored twice again then had a free kick which caused Lyon’s fellow fullback Moodie to storm off. He was persuaded to return and England went on to win 7-2. Dissent on the sports field is clearly not new!
The Late Mr. J.T. Lyon. British Deaf Times 1927, vol 24 p.11
Updated & extended 15/9/2017 & 19/9