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Paul Crompton

Birthdate: (44)
Death: 1915 (44)
Immediate Family:

Son of Henry Crompton and Lucy Henrietta Crompton
Husband of Gladys Mary Crompton
Father of Stephen Hugh Crompton; Alberta Crompton; Catherine Mary Crompton; Paul Romilly Crompton; John David Crompton and 1 other
Brother of David Crompton and Rosamund May Sale Crompton

Managed by: Private User
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About Paul Crompton

Died in RMS Lusitania sinking.

Paul Crompton (* August 20 1878 in England , † May 7 1915 in the Atlantic Ocean from Ireland ) was a British businessman and shipowner . He also served as president of the Booth Steamship Company .


Paul Crompton was one of two sons of lawyer Henry Crompton (1836-1904) and his wife Lucy Henrietta Romilly (1848-1923). His younger brother was Henry David Crompton, who was also a lawyer. Both grandfathers, Charles Crompton and John Romilly, were royal judge and held the title Sir. Crompton was a partner of the shipping company Alfred Booth and Company and president of the Booth Steamship Company . In addition, he was Vice President of Surpass Leather Company, based in Philadelphia . This was a company founded by Sir Alfred Booth Company for the production of chrome-tanned leather goods.

On 27  October 1900 he married in Chelsea Gladys Mary Salis-Schwabe (born March 3, 1878), daughter of Major liberal politician George Salis-Schwabe and his wife Mary Jacqueline James.  They lived in the Gilstene Road 29 in the London borough of Kensington and got six children: Stephen Hugh (1901), Alberta (1903), Paul Romilly (1904), Catherine Mary (1905), John David (1909) and Peter Romilly (1914) .  The family traveled a great deal, which was reflected in the places of birth of the children.  Stephen was in Vladivostok born Catherine in London and Alberta in South America .  The other children were born in Philadelphia, where Paul Crompton had a permanent residence because of his professional activity. 
In May 1915, Crompton traveled with his wife, six children and the nanny Dorothy Allen aboard the British luxury liner RMS Lusitania from New York to England.  The ship was on 7  May 1915 off the south coast of Ireland by a German U-boat sunk by torpedo attack.  1198 passengers and crew were killed, including Paul and Gladys Crompton, the six children and the nanny.  Only the bodies of three of the children were found, and in Queenstown buried. 


Paul Crompton, 44, was an Englishman returning home to England. He was the Vice President of Surpass Leather Company at St. Martin’s and Hartwell Lanes in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Crompton was also a partner in the firm of Alfred Booth and Company, as the Surpass Leather Company was part of the Booth Group. Paul Crompton was traveling aboard Lusitania with his wife Gladys, children Stephen, Alberta, Catherine, Paul (called Romilly), John, and Peter, and the children’s nurse Dorothy Allen. The entire family and their nurse was lost in the Lusitania disaster on 7 May 1915.

Family and background

Paul Crompton was born 20 August 1871, the son of barrister-at-law Henry Crompton and Lucy Romilly. Paul had a younger brother, David, born in 1873. Henry Crompton was the son of Justice Sir Charles Crompton, and Lucy Romilly was the daughter of Sir John, First Lord Romilly. Sir Charles Crompton was first cousin of Alfred and Charles Booth of the Booth Group, a trading conglomerate that started with the Booth Steamship Company. Lucy’s brother the Honourable Henry Romilly, joined as partner of the Booth Group in 1870.

Paul married Gladys Mary Salis-Schwabe (born 3 February 1878) on 27 October 1900 in Chelsea, London, England, United Kingdom. In 1902, Paul Crompton worked for the Booth Group in China working on raw materials. Paul and Gladys traveled frequently, and their children were born in different places around the world.

Stephen Hugh Crompton was born in Vladivostok, in the Russian Far East in 1901. Alberta Crompton was born in South America in 1903. Catherine was born in London, England around 1905. Paul Romilly Crompton, who went by Romilly, was born in 1904 in Philadelphia. John David Crompton was born in Philadelphia in 1909. The youngest, Peter Romilly Crompton was born in Philadelphia in 1914.


In January 1906, George Booth returned to the United Kingdom and turned over the American management of the Booth Group to Paul Crompton, Clement W. Jones and Franklyn B. Kirkbride. Booth had appointed Kirkbride as manager of American interests in August 1905, but he was succeeded by Crompton and Jones.

In 1907, the Booth Group bought out Philadephia tanner J.P. Mathieus’ share in Surpass Leather Goods. Start on 1 January, Paul Crompton took over from Mathieu as vice-president and general manager of Surpass.


Paul Crompton was shipping sheepskin accouterments for the British Army aboard Lusitania‘s final voyage. The Crompton’s ticket for the voyage was 46081. Paul and Gladys stayed in cabin D-56 while the children were split up between cabins D-58 and D-60. The children’s nanny, Dorothy Allen, stayed in cabin B-60. The Crompton family had been so loud that their neighbor, Theodate Pope in D-54, requested to be moved to another cabin.

The entire Crompton family was lost in the Lusitania disaster when the German submarine U-20 torpedoed the ship on 7 May 1915. Dorothy Allen and two or three of the children may have been the nanny and children who Wallace Phillips saw rushing into the B deck foyer, shouting, “Torpedo!” as the torpedo was about to hit the ship.

Samuel Knox saw the Cromptons during the disaster, relating later:

I saw Paul Crompton, of Chestnut Hill, with four of his little children. He was tying to fasten a belt around the smallest, a mere baby.

One of his two older daughters [Alberta], a girl of about 12, was having trouble with the belt she was trying to put on by herself. ‘Please will you show me how to fix this?’ she asked unconcernedly. I adjusted it, and she thanked me.

The bodies of Stephen, John, and Peter were recovered. All 6 children, their parents and nurse died. Per the list of interments, Master John Crompton was body #192, age 6 years, grave #482; Master Peter Crompton was body #214, age 9 months, grave #482; Mr. Stephen Crompton was body #134, age 17 years, grave #482.

A picture of Mrs. Crompton and the children appeared in The New York Times, Sunday, 9 May 1915, page 6.

Paul’s brother David took over Paul’s Booth Group interests in the United States after Paul’s death.

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Paul Crompton's Timeline

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Age 44