Female portrait placeholder image

Name: Mary Compton

Burial Number: 0215

Gender: Female

Occupation: Wife of Edwin Jesse Compton, Baker, Journeyman resident at 2 Brunswick Road Heene

Distinction: Typhoid Victim

Born: 00/09/1867

Died: 23/08/1893

Buried: 28/08/1893

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Mary’s maiden name was Attewell and she was the daughter of Frederick, a farm labourer, and Eliza, his wife, née Dance. She was baptised at Enbourn, Berkshire, on 1 September 1867. In July 1887 she married Edwin Jesse Compton in Brighton. Her father-in-law was Edwin Compton, an artist born in Worthing in 1848, whose mother’s maiden name was Dyer, which is important to this account. He gave art lessons at 6, Chapel Road, Worthing. and there are three of his paintings in Worthing Art Gallery and Museum. Edwin Jesse was witness to an attempted murder in Buckingham Road, Worthing, on 13 July 1892. The screams of children were heard in the backyard of a neighbouring house where Robert Dyer, his wife, Ellen Elizabeth, and their five children lived. Ellen was discovered standing beside a water tub holding her youngest child, William Robert, aged 2 years, face down in the water. Emily Richards, of 3, Buckingham Road, next door, struggled to pull Ellen away from the tub and called for help. Another neighbour, Mrs Compton, helped by a young man, Edwin (Jesse) Compton, (aged 24 at the time) managed to take the drenched but conscious child from Ellen and took him to her own home. This was not MARY Compton but reported in the Worthing Gazette to be REBECCA Compton, Robert Dyer’s sister. She was the wife of Albert Compton, of 5, Buckingham Road, a brother of Edwin Compton, the artist. William soon recovered and it was discovered that his mother had been detained in the Haywards Heath Asylum between 19 January 1884 and 30 August 1884 and was generally known to be convinced that her children would be taken away. She was arrested and at Lewes was found guilty but “not responsible for her actions” and she was ordered to be “detained during Her Majesty’s pleasure.” Where she was detained was Broadmoor. She was discharged on 17 May 1897. Surprisingly, in the 1901 Census she was back with her husband, Robert, and children, including William, now aged 11. Meanwhile, Mary Compton had died during the Typhoid epidemic on 23rd August 1893 and on 27 October 1894 Edwin Jesse Compton married his cousin, Rebecca Compton, the daughter of Albert and Rebecca Compton. Mary was buried at Heene on 25 August 1893. Her husband was given a small amount of money from the Sick Poor Fund to help with funeral expenses. He wrote to the local paper to complain that it wasn’t enough to cover the funeral and child care costs.

Researcher: Angela Levy

The Grave

No headstone image available

Location in Cemetery

Area: NWS Row: 9 Plot: 8

Exact Location (what3words): mice.wider.ants

Ashes or Urn: Unknown



Mary Compton is buried under the headstone for Alice and David Frame


In memory of Alice wife of David Frame M.A. M.D. died 30th January 1935 and of her husband David Frame M.A. M.D. died 2nd March 1947

Further Information


Name: Mary Compton

Gender: Female

Born: 00/09/1867

Town: Enbourn

County: Berkshire

Country: England


Maiden Name:Attewell

Marriage Date: /07/1887

Spouse First Name: Edwin

Spouse Second Name: Jesse

Spouse Last Name: Compton

Town of Marriage: Brighton

County of Marriage: Sussex

Country of Marriage: England

Information at Death

Date of Death: 23/08/1893

Cause of death: Enteric Fever 17 days, Exhaustion

Address line 1: The Training Home (temporary hospital)

Address line 3: High Street

Town: Worthing

County: Sussex

Country: England


No obituary has been entered.

Personal Effects

Money left to others: No value recorded

Current value of effects: Not calculated

Census Information


Living at Beecham Lane, Speenhamland, Berkshire – Frederick Attewell, 30, head, farm labourer; Eliza Attewell, 31, wife; William T Attewell, 10, son,scholar; Alice, 8, daughter, scholar; Emma, 6, daughter, scholar; Mary Attewell, 4, daughter; Harry C , 1, son


Living at Peach Street, Wokingham – Frederick Attewell, head, 40, general labourer; Eliza, 31, wife; Joseph, 22, son, brewer; Mary Attewell, 16, daughter, domestic servant; Daniel, 9, son, scholar; Arthur, 5, son, scholar; Frederick R Dance, 24, son-in-law, general labourer

Miscellaneous Information

Old Cottages in Heene Lane

Edwin Compton painted this oil on canvas in 1891. it is 47.0 x 60.8 and is housed in Worthing Museum and Art Gallery.