Mr. Anderson was born into a poor working-class family. His parents were not believers but his mother regularly sent him and the other four children to a Baptist Sunday School. After an upset in the Sunday School (he was banned for unruly behaviour), he began to attend the evening services in the Baptist Church and eventually he trusted the Lord Jesus as his own personal Saviour. The minister at the Baptist Church was a Scotsman and he took an interest in Norman and showed him kind hospitality. Norman became an avid reader of the Scriptures and had an enquiring mind. His enquiries led him to ask about the proper method of gathering as explained in the Holy Scriptures. He came into contact with brethren gathered to the Name of the Lord Jesus (Matt.18:20) in Beech Grove Hall, Newcastle-upon-Tyne. He left the Baptist Church and was received into fellowship at Beech Grove Hall where he continued for many years.
Mr. Anderson began his working life in a factory when he was 14 years of age. He was an apprentice fitter and turner for four years, but was made redundant during the depression period of the 1930's. He was made redundant one month before he was due to be married. Mr. Anderson met his wife-to-be at an open-air meeting at Cowan's Monument, Newcastle. She was singing a solo and they began to "keep company". After they mere married they passed through very difficult times, but the Lord sustained them and they learned many valuable lessons during those times. They proved that the Lord was a Provider in more ways than one.
During his time of unemployment, Mr. Anderson applied himself to the reading of the Scriptures and the ministry of J.N. Darby, W. Kelly and other well-taught brethren. This stood him to good account in later life when he was able to expound the Scriptures in a lucid fashion. He and George Davison (also unemployed) would travel on bicycles to Ashington, Blyth, North Shields and Alnwick (40 miles from Newcastle) to attend Bible Readings.
Mr. Anderson was fond of poetry and he wrote many poems and hymns to which his daughter, Pauline, would compose a tune. The hymn of Mr. Anderson in 'Spiritual Songs' was written for his daughter's wedding, when she was married to Tony Beacon, now with the Lord. Pauline lives in Chelmsford.
In his last months, Mr. Anderson was a resident in a Christian home in Florabank Park, Haddington. When he died, one of the residents said "We have lost a shepherd". Mr. Anderson was an able expounder of Holy Scripture and many younger brethren are indebted to him for his help. He had a brusque manner, but he had a father's heart. He wrote many articles for a magazine called 'Precious Things'.
[These articles are now republished here.]
His hymn in 'Spiritual Songs' is no. 494, "Lord, in Thy grace and truth our souls delight" which is a beautiful wedding hymn.