Birth: 1876 - June Quarter

Place or Registered Place of Birth: Dane End, Ware, Hertfordshire

Baptism: Not Known

Place of Baptism: Not Known

Death: 20 June 1953

Place or Registered Place of Death: 36, Phillimore Gardens, Holland Park, London

Father: Richard Horner Paget

Mother: Caroline Isabel Surtees

Spouse(s): Herbert John Gladstone

Date of Marriage: 2 November 1901

Place or Registered Place of Marriage: St. Andrew's Church, Wells Street, Middlesex


As a result of her marriage, Dorothy Mary Paget was styled as Viscountess Gladstone on 15 February 1910. She was invested as a Dame of Grace, Order of St. John of Jerusalem (D.G. St. J.).

The Times - June 26, 1953
Memorial Service
Gladstone. - On June 20, 1953, peacefully, at her home, 36, Phillimore Gardens, London, after a short illness, Dorothy Mary, wife of the late Herbert John, Viscount Gladstone, P.C., G.C.B., G.C.M.G., G.B.E., first Governor General of the Union of South Africa. A memorial service will be held at the Queen's Chapel, Marlborough Gate, on Tuesday, June 30, at 2.30 p.m.

The Times - June 22, 1953
Lady Gladstone
Viscountess Gladstone, widow of Viscount Gladstone, the fourth son of Mr. W. E. Gladstone and the first Governor-General of the Union of South Africa, died at her home in London on Saturday.

Lady Gladstone is an exceedingly clever hostess and a woman of rare charm. She is exceedingly popular in this country. Her marriage to Lord Gladstone - he was then Mr. Herbert Gladstone, being created a peer in 1910 - was the surprise of 1901. His lordship was then forty-seven years of age, and was generally regarded as a confirmed bachelor. The story goes that his engagement to Miss Dorothy Paget was brought about through their mutual fondness for music. Lord Gladstone's love of music amounts almost to a passion, while his wife is gifted with a sweet voice and much musical talent. Indeed, before her marriage, she was a member of the Babingdon Strollers - an amateur operatic society which has raised hundreds of pounds for hospitals and other charities in Somerset.

She was Dorothy, the youngest daughter of the Right Hon. Sir Richard Paget, M.P. Educated at Queen's College, London, and Cours Filon, Paris, she was early in life brought into close contact with the inner circles of Liberalism in its days of triumph as her marriage to one of Mr. Gladstone's sons abundantly proved. Of a forceful character, she soon made her mark after her husband's appointment to the post of Governor-General of South Africa in 1910. Her particular work was the establishment throughout the Union of a district nursing service. During the 1914-18 war she was in charge of the South African nurses serving in France and she helped to establish the hostel at Victoria Station where nurses were able to stay on their way from France on leave. For many years she was a member of the council of the Queen's District Nurses and she was especially interested in the welfare of the blind. Politically she was naturally moved by those humanitarian instincts which had been the mainsprings of action of the Liberal Party in its great days. She was, for instance, a member of the executive committee of the League of Nations Union for almost the whole period of existence of that body and served as chairman of the women's advisor' council and of various other committees of the organization. In 1938 she succeeded Lady Megan Lloyd-George as president of the Women's Liberal Federation and so found herself in office at the difficult time of Munich and her attitude then was justified by the events which followed. During the 1939-45 war her great interest in nursing found full scope.

The Times - June 24, 1953
Viscountess Gladstone
Sir Roderick Jones writes:-
In a recently translated book Colette quotes her mother: "You'll understand later that one keeps on forgetting old age up to the very brink of the grave." That was true of Lady Gladstone. In spite of her years and, latterly, recurrent ill-health she remained invincibly young in mind and in outlook. To the force of her character she added sweetness of nature, abundant understanding, and unfaltering loyalty. Probably at no time in her life were her qualities better displayed or under heavier tribute than in South Africa 40 years ago.

The union of the two colonies and the two former Boer republics had been happily accomplished: but when Mr. Herbert Gladstone, Home Secretary in the Asquith Government, was nominated first Governor-General the selection was not well received. For political reasons rooted in the 70s and 80s of last century, when Herbert's father was Prime Minister, the name of Gladstone was unpopular with South Africans and, by some, detested. For this alone, and without reference to the Home Secretary's personal attributes, his appointment was looked upon with grave misgiving. When he and his wife landed at the Cape they were welcomed with the formal civility due to their rank and mission, but with little public warmth. Furthermore, during the Governor-General's first year of office he was seriously embarrassed by incidents for which he was criticized unjustly, and with a harshness that sprang from his initial unpopularity. Five years later when he and Lady Gladstone returned finally to England, they carried with them the esteem, and in large measure the affection, of Dutch and English alike; universal regret and good will attended their departure.

This miracle of change was wrought by Lord Gladstone's quiet and firm adherence to his principles, coupled with a wide tolerance and the valuable contribution which he made of his experience and knowledge of constitutional practice to the government of the Union in its teething infancy. The miracle was due also to his wife. From the outset Lady Gladstone entered wholeheartedly into the social life and welfare of the country. Wherever she went she won friends and cooperation by her charm and lovableness, and by her apt mingling of idealism and practical common sense. Steadily she and Lord Gladstone broke down the wall of prejudice and misrepresentation that had faced them, until they crowned with radiant success a South African career that had been started five years before under a cloud of the gloomiest foreboding.


1881 Census:

Cranmore Hall, East Cranmore, Somerset
Richard H. Paget - Head - 49 - M.P., Chairman in Session (Magistrate) - East Cranmore
Aletheia G. - Daughter - 8 - East Cranmore
Hylda S. - Daughter - 7 - East Cranmore
Dorothy M. - Daughter - 4 - London

1891 Census:

58, Queen Anne Str., St. Marylebone
Caroline I. Paget - Head - Married - 43
A.J. Paget - Daughter - Single - 18 -
Hylda Paget - Daughter - 17 - St. George, London
Dorothy M. Paget - Daughter - 14
Geoffrey M. Paget - Son - 9

1901 Census:

Cranmore Hall, East Cranmore, Somerset
Richard Paget - Head - 69 - Privy Councillor, J.P. & D.L., Living on his own means
Caroline Paget - Wife - 58
Geoffrey Paget - Son - 19 - 2nd Lieut. Coldstream Guards - St Marylebone, London
Hylda Paget - Daughter - Single - 27 - Albermarle St, London
Dorothy Paget - Daughter - Single - 24 - St. Marylebone, London
Aletheia Bruce - Daughter - Married - 28 - East Cranmore
Gervase Bruce - Grandson - 2 - St. Marylebone, London

Dorothy Mary (May) Paget