Paul, John Dean (DNB00)

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PAUL, Sir JOHN DEAN (1802–1868), banker, born on 27 Oct. 1802, the eldest son of Sir John Dean Paul, bart., a London banker, by his first wife, Frances Eleanor, youngest daughter of John Simpson of Bradley Hall, Durham, was admitted to Westminster School on 24 April 1811, but left in the same year, and subsequently went to Eton. He became a partner in the firm of Snow, Paul, & Paul, bankers and navy agents, of No. 217 Strand, in 1828, and on the death of his father on 16 Jan. 1852 he succeeded to the baronetcy. On 11 June 1855 the firm, which then consisted of William Strahan, Paul, and Robert Makin Bates, suspended payment. During the bankruptcy proceedings which immediately ensued a list of securities to the amount of 113,625l., belonging to their clients, but which had been fraudulently sold or deposited by the bankrupts, was voluntarily handed into the court signed by the three members of the firm. Criminal proceedings were thereupon taken against them, and on 26 Oct. 1855 the three partners were indicted at the Old Bailey before Baron Alderson for having illegally converted to their own use certain Danish bonds of the value of 5,000l. entrusted to them as bankers for safe custody by Dr. John Griffith, canon of Rochester. Paul was defended by Serjeant Byles, who admitted that the bonds were disposed of by his client, but argued that Paul's intention to replace them was shown by the subsequent purchase of other bonds to a similar amount, though they, too, were afterwards sold in a similar manner. He also endeavoured to maintain that Paul, having made a full disclosure in the bankruptcy court, was no longer liable to a criminal prosecution. Sir Frederick Thesiger contended on behalf of Strahan that the sale of the bonds was made solely by Paul, who alone received the proceeds, and that there was no proof that Strahan was privy to the transaction; while Edwin James declared that his client Bates was totally ignorant of the whole affair. On the following morning all three partners were found guilty, and severally sentenced to transportation for fourteen years. The debts proved against the firm amounted in round numbers to three-quarters of a million, and the dividend eventually realised came to 3s. 2d. in the pound. The business was taken over by the London and Westminster Bank, and a branch office was established by them on the premises formerly occupied by the bankrupt firm. Paul, who was reputed to be a man of the highest religious principles, died at St. Albans, Hertfordshire, on 7 Sept. 1868, aged 65. He married, first, on 10 Oct. 1826, Georgiana, third daughter of Charles George Beauclerk of St. Leonard's Lodge, Sussex, by whom he had an only son, Aubrey John Dean Paul, who succeeded him in the baronetcy. She died on 25 Dec. 1847. Paul married, secondly, on 17 Jan. 1849, Susan, daughter of John Ewens of Brighton, who died on 3 June 1854. He married, thirdly, on 17 Oct. 1861, Jane Constance, daughter of Thomas Brigden of Holmesdale House, Surrey. He had no issue by his second or third wife. His widow died on 21 Dec. 1877.

Paul illustrated ‘The Country Doctor's Horse: a Tale in Verse,’ written by his father, and privately printed in 1847 (London, obl. fol.). He was the author of: 1. ‘Harmonies of Scripture, and Short Lessons for Young Christians,’ London, 1846, 16mo. 2. ‘Bible Illustrations; or the Harmony of the Old and New Testament … To which is added a Paraphrase of the Book of Esther. The above works are from MSS. purchased at the sale of Sir John Dean Paul,’ London, 1855, 12mo. 3. ‘A B C of Foxhunting, consisting of twenty-six coloured illustrations by the late Sir John Dean Paul, bart.’ London, [1871], 4to.

[Price's Handbook of London Bankers, 1876, pp. 128–30; Criminal Court Proceedings, 1854–1855, xlii. 695–709; Cox's Reports of Cases in Criminal Law, 1858, vii. 85–8; Irving's Annals of our own Time, 1869, pp. 295–6, 302–3; Annual Register, 1855, Chron. pp. 98–104, 359–75; Times, 12 and 15 Sept. 1868; Mr. Serjeant Ballantine's Experiences of a Barrister's Life, 1890, p. 198; Burke's Peerage, 1892, p. 1085; Foster's Baronetage, 1881, p. 487; Stapylton's Eton School Lists, 1864, p. 91; Barker and Stenning's Westminster School Register, 1892, p. 179; Notes and Queries, 7th ser. x. 247, 312–13; Brit. Mus. Cat.]

G. F. R. B.