Edwin William Smith

1876-1957. Missionary, writer, and anthropologist. Born of missionary parents in Aliwal North, South Africa, he entered the Primitive Methodist* ministry. Between 1902 and 1915 he worked among the Ila people of Zambia, producing a grammar, dictionary, and NT translation. He served the British and Foreign Bible Society (1916-39), latterly as editorial (translations) superintendent, and also taught in various American Negro colleges. Although he had little academic training, he achieved international recognition as an anthropologist, notably for his works, The Ila-Speaking People of Northern Rhodesia (with A.M. Dale) and The Golden Stool. He was elected president of the Royal Anthropological Institute (1933-35) and received various distinctions. He published numerous books on topics related to African religion and missions.