Posted by: kbenoy | September 21, 2011

Cataloguing the Executor Accounts of George Golightly Wilkie

This week I have started to work my way through the Executor Accounts of George Golightly Wilkie. For those of you interested in the family connections here, he was the brother of Mein Wilkie (the first Wilkie of Smith, Son & Wilkie) and the Uncle of Mein Digby Wilkie (who took over the firm after the death of his father Mein Wilkie). Interestingly, there are very few records within the collection referring to the Smith family but a large portion relating to the Wilkie family.

George Golightly Wilkie was born to George Wilkie and Marion Golightly in Fife in 1850. He moved to Doncaster and married Fanny Farr in 1880 and they had seven children: Effie, Constance, Dorothy, Mary, Maxwell, Ida and Freda. The family lived at “Ellerslie”, Thorne Road, Doncaster but George Golightly Wilkie also inherited property from his father including “Myrtle Bank”, Leven, Fife and “Bayview Cottage”, Leven, Fife. He worked as Secretary of the Denaby and Cadeby Main Collieries Limited.

He died on 6 June 1929, aged 79 leaving effects of £43,923 15s 3d. The property “Ellerslie” and the household furniture was left for the use of his wife and after her death for sale by the Trust. He left “Myrtle Bank” to his daughter Effie and “Bayview Cottage” to his daughter Constance. A Trust Fund was set up for Constance, Freda and Mary. Fanny Wilkie, nee Farr, died in 1934 in Doncaster aged 78.

So far this week, I have catalogued the Cash Book (D-SSW/1/4/1/1/1/1) and two Ledgers (D-SSW/1/4/1/1/1/2-3), which cover June 1929 – April 1960 and form the central part of the Executor Accounts. I have also catalogued the Settled Share Ledgers for Constance, Mary and Freda (D-SSW/1/4/1/1/2/1-5), which contain details of the investments they inherited. I am now working through a variety of financial reports relating to the estate including Balance Sheets and Income Accounts, Cash Accounts, Statement of Accounts and Estate Accounts and Notes on the Estate Accounts. It has taken some time to get my head around these different reports and what they mean so I can accurately catalogue them.

The definition of a Balance Sheet given in the book Historical Accounting Records: A Guide for Archivists and Researchers by Rosemary E. Boyns, Trevor Boyns and John Richard Edwards has been useful.

Balance Sheet: One of the two main forms of accounting summary produced as the end product of the accounting process. The balance sheet shows the financial position of an entity at a certain point in time.

For other relevant definitions see my post about Double Entry Bookkeeping.

The balance sheets in this collection are in two forms, draft and final. The draft versions were created by the accountants and show all their amendments and changes to create the final version. The draft series is more comprehensive with accounts every year from 1929, when George Golightly Wilkie died, until 1953. The final versions are easier to use as the information is clearer than on the amended draft versions but less have survived. The final versions run from 1932 – 1937, 1939 – 1940, 1942 – 1943, 1947-1948. Used together, I think you would be able to get a good picture of the finances for the estate of George Golightly Wilkie between 1929 – 1953 but it would require some work.

I have many more records to catalogue within the papers of George Golightly Wilkie deceased including a large collection of correspondence and paperwork regarding the various properties. It is a complex collection but I hope, once catalogued, it will be easier to use and understand.



  1. I have discovered this blog today and wish to inform you that George Golightly Wilkie of Doncaster is my Great great Grandfather .My Great grandmother is Constance Wilkie who married a John Hall and then had my Grandmother Joan Maxwell Hall . I think that Joan took her Uncle Maxwell name as her middle name ) Can i ask you about your interest of the Wilkies? I have visited Doncaster and have seen the houses mentioned . I was especially interested in at last finding out which mines George was working for . I could ask so many more questions but will end with just one .. Can i find all this information out in Wolverhampton .. Yours gratefully Heather Jones (nee Clark )

    • Dear Heather

      Unfortunately this project was completed in 2012 and the woman who did the cataloguing is now working elsewhere. However, all the records mentioned in this blog post are held at Wolverhampton City Archives, so if you would like any more information please get in touch:


      • Thank you . i have found such a lot of information since i sent the enquiry.
        I live in Aberystwyth and Wolverhampton is a very short train journey from here .

        Heather Jones

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