Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Joseph John Dawson Paul

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Joseph John Dawson Paul (1841-1932) of Boulton and Paul

1841 Born in Thorpe Abbotts, Norfolk, the son of Joseph Paul (1803-1854), Farmer, and his wife Emily Chaston

1841 Living at Thorpe Abbots, Norfolk: Joseph Paul (age c35), Farmer. With Emily Paul (age c20) and Joseph Paul (age 2 months). Three servants.[1]

1851 Living at Trinity Street, Bungay, Suffolk: Joseph Paul (age 51 born Mettingham Castle), Retired Farmer - Married. With his two children Joseph J. D. Paul (age 10 born Thorpe Abbots) and Elinor A. Paul (age 5 born Thorpe Abbots). One servant.[2]

1869 Married Elizabeth Duffield

1871 Living at Jay's Square, Norwich: Joseph Paul (age 29 born Thorpe Abbotts, Norfolk), Master Iron Founder. With his wife Elizabeth Paul (age 22 born Norwich). One servant.[3]

1887 Birth of son Joseph Dawson Paul

1891 Living at The Laurels, Newmarket Road, Norwich: Joseph Jno D. Paul (age 49 Thorpe Abbotts, Norfolk), Galvanised Ironfounder - Employer. With his wife Elizabeth Paul (age 42 born Norwich) and their four children; Annie Charles Paul (age 12 born Norwich); Eleana M. Paul (age 10 born Norwich); Emily Paul (age 9 born Norwich); and Joseph D. Paul (age 4 born Norwich). Four servants.[4]

1900 Elected mayor of Norwich.[5]

1911 Living at 95 New Market Road, Eaton Grove, Norwich: Joseph John Dawson Paul (age 69 born Thorpe Abbotts, Norfolk), Director of Boulton and Paul, Iron Founder, Engineer, Manufacturer of Wire Netting. - Employer. With his wife Elizabeth Paul (age 62 born Norwich). Married 42 years with four children. Six servants.[6]

1932 Obituary[7]

Death at Norwich of Mr. J. J. Dawson Paul Although he had been lather invalid during the last three months or so, the death, at the age 91, of Mr. J. J. Dawson Paul, which occurred on Monday afternoon at 15, Bracondale. Norwich, came as a great shock to many Norwich citizens. Until two months ago Mr. Dawson Paul was able to go out motoring, but although was not definitely ill, was confined to the house, and his death was largely the natural consequence of old age.

Widely known as leader of commerce and manufacture, distinguished citizen of Norwich, and as one who had filled the position of Mayor and Sheriff, he had established many claims to public regard. Particularly will be remembered as a keen sportsman. It was not until his birthday approached that he discontinued an occasional day in the shooting field.

Joseph John Dawson Paul was the only son of Joseph Paul, well-known agriculturist and inventor, of Thorne Abbotts, Hull, and Emily, his wife, daughter of Benjamin Caston of Mendham. His ancestors in the male line for several generations were natives and Freemen of Norwich. His great-grandfather, Thomas Paul, was a manufacturer and died in St. Augustines in 1787.

Joseph John Dawson Paul was born at Thorpe Abbotts Hall on April 10th, 1841. He was given a sound commercial education. His father having died in 1854, after losing a large sum of money in an invention he had not perfected, the son found himself left at 13 years of age without resources, with no relations, and with very few friends.

After serving an apprenticeship to Messrs. Boulton and Barnard, ironmongers, Norwich, he was placed by them in the managership of the works department at their London Street and Castle Street shops.

In 1864 Mr. Boulton acquired a lease on the premises in Rose Lane, started manufacturing business and made young Paul manager of it. A few years after the death of Mr. Barnard, Mr Paul was taken into partnership, and in the firm for the first time look the style of Boulton and Paul.

On the death of Mr. Boulton, Mr. Paul became sole proprietor. He continued discharge his duties as a director of Boulton and Paul Ltd., with which he has been associated for the past 79 years, relinquishing his position as chairman four years ago in favour of his only son , Capt. J. Dawson Paul. For several years as a Conservative he represented the old First Ward in Norwich City Council. In 1885-6 he was Sheriff, and in 1900-1 he was Mayor.

Mr Paul was man of genial easy manner and an impressive personality to look upon.

Mr Paula mayoral year was a memorable one. It fell to him, in the presence of thirty thousand people in Market Place, to claim the accession of King Edward VII. He laid the foundation stone of the new Norfolk and Norwich Savings Bank in Red Lion Street, and also that of the Norwich Union Life Office in Surrey Street. The last public act which Mrs. Paul performed as Mayoress was to present a cheque for £700 to the Norfolk Norwich Hospital, which sum she had collected for the purpose of providing new beds and bedsteads.

Mr. Paul was married in to Elizabeth, daughter of Henry Duffield, of Norwich. He is survived by two daughters. Mrs. Harmer and Mrs L. E. Parker, and one son, Capt. J. Dawson

In July, 1893. Mr. and Mrs. Paul celebrated their silver wedding and received a presentation plate at the hands of the employees of Messrs. Boulton and Paul. A like ceremony, but on far more extensive scale, was performed in July 1918 on the of the wedding jubilee...[more]


1847 Patent. Joseph Paul, of Thorpe Abbots Hall, farmer, for improvements in forming or cutting drains in land and for raising sub-soils to the surface of land.[8]

1849 Patent. Joseph Paul, of Thorpe Abbots Hall, near Scole, Suffolk. Patent deep draining and subsoil-raising machine (new implement) Patent plough.[9]

1849 September. Sale of stock and equipment at Thorpe Abbots.[10]

1854 November 9th. Died. Joseph Paul, late of Thorp Abbots Hall.[11]

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. 1841 Census
  2. 1851 Census
  3. 1871 Census
  4. 1891 Census
  5. Norwich Mercury - Saturday 10 November 1900
  6. 1911 Census
  7. Yarmouth Independent - Saturday 22 October 1932
  8. Joseph Paul, of Thorpe Abbots Hall
  9. Norfolk News - Saturday 21 July 1849
  10. The Suffolk Chronicle; or Weekly General Advertiser & County Express. - Saturday 01 September 1849
  11. Norwich Mercury - Saturday 11 November 1854