Queer Places:
Fielden House, 13 Little College St, Westminster, London SW1P 3SH, UK

Alfred Waterhouse Somerset Taylor (born March 8, 1862) was involved in the Oscar Wilde's trial in 1895. In 1895 when Wilde was arrested, Taylor was arrested with him, and charged with procuring. The police found a considerable collection of female clothing in his room. Taylor refused to turn Queen’s Evidence against Wilde, the two men were tried together, and both sentenced to two years with hard labour.

Alfred Taylor pointed out the Piccadilly boys to Charles Parker when he recruited him for his house in Little College Street, remarking that he did not "understand sensible men wasting their money on painted trash like that. Many do though." But when Taylor and Parker were arrested with sixteen other men in a raid on a house in Fitzroy Street in the year before Oscar Wilde's trials, two of the men were dressed as women. Taylor also had in his rooms women's clothes which he claimed were for masquerades. Parker even said that Taylor has told him that he had gone through a form of marriage with a youth named Charles Mason. Mason had dressed as a woman and the ceremony was followed by a wedding breakfast. Taylor denied the marriage; but Wilde himself wrote to Mason that "I hope marriage had not made you too serious? It has never had that effect on me;" and Mason asked Taylor to "come home soon, dear, and let us go out sometimes together."

Alfred Watherhouse Somerset Taylor was 30 years old when he met Wilde in the autumn of 1892. The son of a cocoa manufacturer, he was expelled from Marborough having been caught in the lavatory with a much younger boy engaging in lewd acts. He served in the 4th Battalion of the Royal Fusiliers, City of London Regiment. In 1883, when of age, he came into a handsome fortune of £45.000, but with weekly expenses ranging from £40 to £50 a week on rent boys, bankruptcy within a year was inevitable. Taylor was married, and his husband, Charles Spurrier Mason with whom he staged a mock wedding in 1893, was a 25 years old prostitute.

1894 Taylor and Arthur Marling, a female impersonator, were arrested for wearing female clothing at a party given by John Preston on Fitzroy Street.

On release Taylor emigrated to the United States where nothing is known of him except that in the 1920s he was working as a waiter in Chicago, for by chance he served Alfred Douglas, Wilde's old lover, who was visiting the city.

My published books:

See my published books