This section tells the stories of The Salvation Army’s founders and leaders, as well as some of the ordinary men and women who joined and went on to shape the early Salvation Army.


Booth family members

William and Catherine Booth co-founded the Christian Mission in 1865, which later became The Salvation Army in 1878. Their eight children – Bramwell, Ballington, Catherine, Emma, Herbert, Marian, Eva (later Evangeline) and Lucy - were brought up in the faith and were strongly encouraged by their parents to work for the movement as they matured. Seven of the children took leading roles in their early years and two of these went on to become General while three eventually moved away from The Salvation Army to carry out their own evangelical work independently. Booths continued to serve through the generations and are well remembered today as the organization’s founding family.

William Booth

William Booth was born in Nottingham on 10 April 1829, the son of Samuel Booth and his second wife Mary.

Catherine Booth

Catherine Booth was born in 1829 in Derbyshire, to Sarah and John Mumford.

Booth children

William and Catherine Booth had eight children. Each became involved in Army work.

Florence Booth

Florence's women's ministry led to social work centres across the country

Frederick Booth Tucker

Frederick Booth-Tucker pioneered work in India and together with Emma Booth-Tucker, revitalised the American Salvation Army

Generals of The Salvation Army

The General is the highest office in The Salvation Army’s quasi-military structure. He or she is the worldwide leader of The Salvation Army. The General is elected by a committee known as the High Council and is based at The Salvation Army’s International Headquarters. Since its inception The Salvation Army has had 21 Generals, the first of whom was The Salvation Army’s founder, General William Booth.


Information on all the Generals of The Salvation Army

Early pioneers

This section tells the stories of some of The Salvation Army’s early converts who went on to pioneer the work of The Salvation Army across both Britain and the world.

Early pioneers

Find out about the achievements of some of The Salvation Army's earliest recruits.

Virtual Heritage Centre

Visit our London museum virtually.

Who are The Salvation Army?

Discover the origins, beliefs and symbols of The Salvation Army.


Find out about opposition to The Salvation Army’s expansion in the Victorian era.


Find out about the role that music and song plays within The Salvation Army.