Mr Alexander Mellis Thompson

Mr Alexander Mellis Thompson 1 was born in Peterhead, Aberdeenshire, Scotland around 1875.

He was the son of Adam Howie Thompson (b. 1847 in Ordiquhill, Banffshire), a stonemason, and Isabella Mellis (b. 1851 in Cairney, Aberdeenshire) who had married on 31 December 1874 in Cairney. He had two known siblings: Edwin (b. 1886) and Adam Howie (b. 1893). The family later ran the Seaview Hotel in Peterhead.

Alexander first appears on the 1881 census as a visitor to the home of his widowed maternal grandfather Alexander Mellis (b. 1820), a crofter of five acres, in Ruthven, Cairney. His father was listed elsewhere as a boarder at 53 Green Street in Aberdeen. The family were still living in Boddam by the time of the 1891 census. Alexander would be absent from the family home at the time of the 1901 census, then the Seaview Hotel and he was listed elsewhere as a boarder at 2 Waters Close, Leith, Midlothian and was described as an unmarried mason.

He was married to Isabella Dalgarno May (b. 13 June 1881 in Peterhead, Aberdeenshire) and they had two children: George Alexander (b. 1907) and Adam (b. 1911). The family are believed to have lived in Boddam, Peterhead but were making plans to settle in the USA with Alexander to travel ahead first before sending for his wife and sons.

He boarded the Titanic at Southampton as a third class passenger (ticket number 32302 which cost £8, 1s) but his exact destination in the USA is unknown. Whilst aboard he sent a postcard to his wife which was posted in Queenstown on 11 April 1912:

Dear Lib.

Getting on all right, after leaving Sthampton (sic) we sent to Cherbourg France and we are nearing Queenstown. It is very comfortable here and as steady as a rock, but the feather beds are a bit hard.

Kindest love to all,


Mr Thompson lost his life in the disaster. His body, if recovered, was never identified.

His widow Isabella is not known to have remarried and possibly died in the 1950s. His brother Adam later served with the Gordon Highlanders during WWI and was in training with the RAF when he was killed in a plane crash on 7 September 1918 aged 26.

The postcard Thompson had sent to his wife was discovered years later by family and auctioned by Sotheby's in 2002 for in excess of £7000.



Gavin Bell, UK
Hermann Söldner, Germany


  1. Often listed as Alexander Morrison Thompson. 

References and Sources

Link and cite this biography

(2017) Alexander Mellis Thompson Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #1258, updated 25th August 2017 03:45:02 AM)

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