Mrs Laura Gertrude LOVE who was initiated into the Golden Dawn in March 1897 and chose the Latin motto ‘Veritas’. In December 1898 she was initiated into the GD’s 2nd Order, the level at which you were allowed to start doing practical magic rather than just reading occult books and manuscripts.
I couldn’t find this woman on any census; nor could I find a marriage registration for her so she was definitely not married in England. Not finding Laura’s marriage means that I don’t know what her original surname was. My thought that she had probably lived most of her life abroad was encouraged by her giving two addresses at the time of her GD initiation: 62 St John’s Wood Terrace, Regent’s Park; and the address of another GD member, which answers the question WHO DID SHE KNOW IN THE GOLDEN DAWN? - it was Henrietta Paget, one of the GD’s best (strictly unofficial) recruitment agents.
BASIC SOURCES I USED for all Golden Dawn members.
Membership of the Golden Dawn: The Golden Dawn Companion by R A Gilbert. Northampton: The Aquarian Press 1986. Between pages 125 and 175, Gilbert lists the names, initiation dates and addresses of all those people who became members of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn or its many daughter Orders between 1888 and 1914. The list is based on the Golden Dawn’s administrative records and its Members’ Roll - the large piece of parchment on which all new members signed their name at their initiation. All this information had been inherited by Gilbert but it’s now in the Freemasons’ Library at the United Grand Lodge of England building on Great Queen Street Covent Garden.
Family history: freebmd; ancestry.co.uk (census and probate); findmypast.co.uk; familysearch; Burke’s Peerage and Baronetage; Burke’s Landed Gentry; Armorial Families; thepeerage.com; and a variety of one-family genealogy websites.
Famous-people sources: mostly about men, of course, but very useful even for the female members of GD. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Who Was Who. Times Digital Archive.
Catalogues: British Library; Freemasons’ Library.
Wikipedia; Google; Google Books - my three best resources. I also used other web pages, but with some caution, as - from the historian’s point of view - they vary in quality a great deal.
Copyright SALLY DAVIS
23 April 2012