Frederick Gerald Haxton (1892 - 1944)

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About Frederick Gerald Haxton

Frederick Gerald Haxton (1892 – 1944), a native of San Francisco, was the long term secretary and lover of the famous novelist and playwright W. Somerset Maugham.

He and Maugham met at the outbreak of World War I when they both began serving from 1914 as part of the Red Cross ambulance unit in Flanders, France.

Secrecy and arrest

Maugham and to a lesser extent Haxton had been affected by the trial of Oscar Wilde. Common to men who were either homosexual or in the case of Maugham who had sexual relationships with both men and women, (Maugham had had an affair with the actress Sue Jones before meeting Haxton and later had a child with Syrie Wellcome whom he married) neither spoke of their situation for fear of recrimination.

However in November 1915 Haxton and another man, John Lindsell, were arrested in a Covent Garden hotel and charged with gross indecency. Unluckily for the two men, military policemen, whilst looking for deserters, had burst into the hotel room of Haxton and Lindsell to find them committing a homosexual act that was not buggery. On December 7 that same year both men were indicted under the same law that had been used to prosecute Oscar Wilde. However, unlike Wilde when the two men appeared in the Central Criminal Court at the Old Bailey on December 10 they were both acquitted. Deportation

Haxton left England shortly thereafter and then on returning in February 1919 he was deported from Britain as an undesirable alien and was never allowed to enter England again. The papers providing reason or reasons for this deportation were placed in a special access category for 100 years and are still closed from the public view.

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Frederick Haxton's Timeline

1892
1892
1944
1944
Age 52