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George Henry Morse

Sir George Henry Morse (27 May 1857 – 1 April 1931) was an English brewer, administrator and mountaineer. He was Lord Mayor of Norwich and later President of the Alpine Club.


Born in 1857, George Morse was the son of Charles Morse of Aylsham, Norfolk, a partner in the brewery of Steward, Patteson Fitch & Co., and a great grandson of John Morse, who had been Mayor of Norwich for 1781.[1] Charles Morse was also an alpinist and had joined the Alpine Club in 1863.[2]

The son, George Morse, became a successful brewer and a Justice of the Peace in the city of Norwich.[1] In 1893, he married Annie, a daughter of Henry Pasteur, another magistrate, and they had two sons and one daughter.[3] Morse had a younger brother, Arthur Francis Morse, who served in the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons and retired from the army as a colonel.[4]

Morse was Mayor of Norwich for 1899, then Lord Mayor of Norwich for 1922–1923, after King Edward VII had elevated the title.[3] In the Birthday Honours list of 1923, gazetted on 29 June, he became a knight bachelor.[5] In 1927 Morse was a director of both principal Norwich Union companies, for Fire Insurance and Life Insurance.[6] By 1931 he had served as chairman of the first and president of the second.[7]

A Conservative in politics, Morse was a member of the Alpine Club, of which he was President between 1926 and 1929, and also of the Junior Carlton Club. At the time of his death in 1931 his address was given in Who's Who as "Thorpe St Andrew, Norwich".[3] He left a substantial estate worth £143,449 after liabilities and duties.[7] His obituary in the Alpine Journal said of him

Though it is a heresy to suggest it, George Morse was, in my opinion, one of the very best guides of his day. And he was one of the best companions.[2]


  1. ^ a b Patrick T. R. Palgrave-Moore, The Mayors and Lord Mayors of Norwich, 1936–1974 (1978), p. 35
  2. ^ a b T. L. Kesteven, 'George Henry Morse' (obituary) in the Alpine Journal, vol. 43 (1931), pp. 334–337
  3. ^ a b c ‘MORSE, Sir George Henry’, in Who Was Who (London: A. & C. Black); online edition by Oxford University Press, December 2007, accessed 30 March 2014 (subscription site)
  4. ^ Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry, vol. 2 (Burke's Peerage, 1969), p. 272
  5. ^ The London Gazette dated 29 June 1923
  6. ^ Thomas Skinner & Company, The Directory of Directors for 1927 (1927), p. 1,119
  7. ^ a b The Post Magazine and Insurance Monitor, vol. 92, issue 2 (Buckley Press, 1932), p. 1,532: "Sir George Henry Morse, of Thorpe St. Andrew, Norwich, late chairman of the Norwich Union Fire Insurance Society and lately president of the Norwich Union Life Insurance Society, left £152,816 (net £143,449)."