Born in Tennessee and later trained at A. B. Simpson’s Missionary Training Institute, Simpson (no relation to A. B. Simpson) and several other Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) missionaries traveled to China in 1892, hoping to evangelize in Tibet. Identifying with the Pentecostal movement, Simpson left the C&MA in 1916. After two years in the United States, he and his family returned to China in 1918 as Assemblies of God (AG) missionaries. Over the years, Simpson evangelized widely and focused his efforts on the training of Chinese clergy; he remained in China until 1949. In retirement in the United States he continued to promote missions. His son, William EkvalI Simpson, also an AG missionary; died at the hands of bandits on the Tibetan-Chinese border in 1932.
This article is reprinted from Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions, Macmillan Reference USA, copyright (c) 1998 Gerald H. Anderson, by permission of The Gale Group; Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Grand Rapids, Michigan. All rights reserved.
- W. W. Simpson, Evangelizing West China (c.1934). Nora Blan, Over Rugged Mountains: W. E. Simpson, Heroes of the Conquest Series no. 8 (n.d.). See also Paul L. King, “Early Alliance Missions in China,” in The Birth of a Vision, David F. Hartzfeld and Charles Nienkirchen, eds. (1986); Gary B. McGee, This Gospel Shall Be Preached: A History and Theology of Assemblies of God Foreign Missions to 1959, vol. 1 (1986); Charles Nienkirchen, A. B. Simpson and the Pentecostal Movement (1992). Simpson’s correspondence and published articles are located at the AG archives, Springfield, Missouri.