Lewis or Louis Stanley Jastrzebski (known as Stanley) was the brother of GD member Bogdan Edwards.  Stanley was initiated into the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn in September 1889 at its Horus Temple in Bradford, which Bogdan Edwards had helped to set up.  Stanley chose the Latin motto ‘Fiat lux’.  He took a few years to do the study necessary to be eligible for the GD’s inner, 2nd Order and was not initiated into it until January 1897.

 

Like his brother Bogdan, Stanley found his Polish surname rather a handicap as he tried to build up a career.  Also like Bogdan, he decided to change it, in 1895.  However, he came up with a different solution to the one opted for by Bogdan, shortening it to Jast (pronounced with a ‘J’, not a y or an I).

 

Stanley Jast became quite a prominent figure in his profession and consequently there’s a biography.  However, it’s not easy to come by a copy so I’ve decided to do a ‘life by dates’ for Stanley for those who are interested.  I’ve leaned very heavily on the biography, which was compiled by two former colleagues, with input on his early life from Stanley’s niece Elsie, Bogdan’s daughter.  The biography is: Louis Stanley Jast: A Biographical Sketch turned out to be m longer than I’d expected.  Published London: The Library Association 1966.  By W G Fry and W A Munford.  It has been very useful to me; but there’s no mention of the Order of the Golden Dawn in it. I’ve also used Stanley’s entry in ODNB which is based on Fry and Munford’s work.

 

With my ‘life by dates’ lists, the event is in italics and the source of the information in my normal Times New Roman.  Unless I say otherwise, the source is the biography of Stanley Jast by Fry and Munford.

 

1850s   Stanley’s father, Stefan Louis de Jastrzebski, arrived in England, after taking place in the 1848/49 atttempt by Hungary to free itself from the Austrian empire.

 

March 1859

            Stefan de Jastrzebski married Elizabeth (Lizzie) Morgan in Kidderminster.

 

1859/60

            Stefan and Lizzie Jastrzebski moved to Halifax.  Stefan opened a tobacconist’s shop.

 

20 August 1868

Louis (or Lewis) Stanley Jastrzebski born in Halifax; the youngest of three brothers.  The oldest of the three was Bogdan Jastrzebski, later Edwards.

            Bogdan Edwards was initiated into the Golden Dawn in 1888.

            Source: GD Members’ Roll at the Freemasons’ Library; transcribed by R A Gilbert for his        The Golden Dawn Companion p134.

 

1870s   The Jastrzebski brothers were at school in Halifax, firstly at the Park Chapel School, then at Field’s Academy.

            For more information on Field’s academy see Malcolm Bull’s Calderdale Companion at

            freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com

 

Probably 1885 or 1886

            Stanley failed the Civil Service entrance exam.

 

1887    Stanley started work at the Halifax public library as assistant librarian.

 

1887-89

            Stanley was introduced to theosophy and astrology by his boss, James Whiteley.

            For further information on Whiteley: his obituary in Library World volume 14 1912 p17.

 

1888    Stanley was promoted to be librarian-in-charge at Halifax Library.

 

1889    Stanley joined the Theosophical Society; which at that time operated in London only.

            Source: TS Membership Register volume for January 1889 to September 1891 p114.

September 1889

Stanley was initiated into the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.  His brother Bogdan Edwards was already a member. 

 

August 1890

Stanley’s article Dogmatism and the Theosophic Brotherhood, was published in the magazine Agnostic Journal.  Three more articles by him were published in the magazine in January 1891.

Source: Lucifer: A Theosophical Journal volume VII September 1890-February 1891 p80 and p515.

December 1890

            Stanley’s humorous dialogue A Dream and its Interpretation was published in Lucifer.

Source: Lucifer: A Theosophical Journal volume VII September 1890-February 1891 pp309-14. 

 

July 1892

Stanley was appointed Peterborough Council’s first-ever librarian, with the brief to set up a library service in the town.

            Other sources: ODNB.

 

1892-98

Stanley was working at Peterborough Library.  In 1892 he joined the Library Association - the professional association for librarians.  At its meetings and in journals, he began to promote the Dewey system of library book classification, against several other rival systems.

 

1893    Stanley’s first published work: Catalogue of the Landing and Reference Departments of Peterborough Public Library.

 

           

1894    Stanley met James Duff Brown at a Library Association meeting in Belfast.

Duff Brown was the first big personality of the expanding world of professional librarianship. After beginning his career in his native Scotland, he was chief librarian of Finsbury and then Islington boroughs.  He founded several library magazines in his time including The Library and Library World.  Before librarianship was taught at college, he ran correspondence courses for professionals; and his book Manual of Library Economy (published 1907) was the standard work on the subject for many years.  Duff Brown and Stanley became good friends.

            Other sources for Duff Brown: his entry in ODNB.

 

1895    On Duff Brown’s advice, Stanley Jastrzebski shortened his surname to Jast (pronounced Jast not Yast or Iast). 

SO FROM THIS TIME ON HE’S KNOWN AS STANLEY JAST.

            Stanley’s mother Lizzie also changed her surname to Jast.

            Sources: 1901 census; death registration.

1895    Publication: 

            Classification in Public Libraries with Special Reference to the Dewey Decimal System.

This had originally been an article in The Library.

             

1896    Publication:

The Up-to-date Guide to Peterborough Cathedral, city and neighbourhood including the Crowland and Thorney Abbeys. 6d.  Published by Taylor and Downs of 28 Westgate Peterborough.  Undated, but the introduction, by “L.S.J.” is dated “Sep. 16, 1896".

 

1897    Stanley read a paper on the Dewey classification system at the International Library Conference, challenging the arguments being put forward against its use.

January 1897

Stanley was initiated into the Golden Dawn’s inner, 2nd Order.  It wasn’t until you were a member of this order that you were allowed to try some practical magic.  

            Source: The Golden Dawn Companion for details see the Sources section.

 

July 1898

            Stanley was appointed chief librarian of Croydon public libraries.

The records of the Golden Dawn don’t seem to know about Stanley’s move to Croydon so I suppose he ceased to be an active member around 1898.

            Source: The Golden Dawn Companion for details see the Sources section.

October 1898

            Stanley joined the TS’s Croydon Lodge.  Talks that he gave at Lodge meetings were

            published in 1941 as What it All Means.

 

Around 1898

Stanley and James Duff Brown were founder-members of The Pseudonyms, a lunch club for librarians working in the London area.  The idea was that all members were known by a pseudonym.  Stanley’s was Orlando Furioso.

Comment from Sally: that members should be known by a pseudonym rather than their usual name echoes the GD’s use of mottos rather than names.  Orlando Furioso was the hero of Ludovico Ariosto’s epic poem of the same name, which Stanley must have read.  ‘Furioso’ means ‘mad’ not ‘angry’ - Orlando is driven mad by his love for Angelica.

 

1898-1915

            Working for Croydon library service.

During Stanley’s time in Croydon he was in charge of an expansion of the service including moving the libraries to new buildings; installing telephones; and setting up a monthly magazine.  Croydon libraries became a model of what a publically-funded library service should be.

            Other source: ODNB.

 

1902    Stanley became honorary curator of the Photographic Survey and Record of Surrey; a joint effort by a voluntary committee and Croydon Libraries Committee.

1902    Publication, though Stanley seems to have done nothing but edited some prepared speeches:

Inauguration of Edward Edwards’ Monument. 

Edward Edwards’ pamphlet on public libraries had paved the way for the Free Public Libraries Act of 1850.  The inauguration of his monument took place on 7 February 1902.

 

June 1904

            Stanley was elected hon sec of the Library Association; he remained in post until 1915.

September-October 1904

As the Library Association’s hon sec, he made a study-trip to the USA, visiting libraries and attending the International Congress of Arts and Science.

Sources: Fry and Munford.  Stanley’s own Who’s Who entry, undated but probably 1940-41; printed as part of the title pages of his What it All Means (published 1941).

Further information on the the Congress: via archive.org to the transactions of the International Congress of Arts and Science published St Louis 1904 in 13 volumes.  The Congress was held in St Louis from 17 to 22 October 1904 as part of the world fair.

 

1907    Publication:

            A Classification of Library Economy and Office Papers

 

1910, probably in April

Stanley met Ethel Winifred Austin (known as Winifred) at a Library Association meeting.

Winifred Austin was Librarian and Secretary of the National Library for the Blind.  For more on her work at the Library, see her entry in ODNB and my file TITLE WHAT IS IT??  Here I’ll just say that Stanley’s relationship with Winifred flourished despite the opposition of her family.

 

1913    Stanley was the Library Association’s representative at a conference of librarians in the USA.

Sources: ODNB and Stanley’s own Who’s Who entry, undated but probably 1940-41; printed as part of the title pages of his What it All Means (published 1941).

 

1914    James Duff Brown died, aged only 51.  Stanley edited the Library Association’s memorial volume:  Memoir and Appreciations of James Duff Brown 1862-1914. 

 

August 1914

Like many others, Stanley was on holiday in Europe when the first World War broke out.  He was stranded in Geneva for several weeks.

 

October 1915

Stanley accepted the job of deputy chief librarian of Manchester library service; on the understanding that he would succeed its chief librarian on his retirement.

1915-31

            Working in Manchester.

 

1916    Stanley and Winifred Austin agreed to marry when the War was over.

1916    Stanley was one of the founders of the Manchester-based experimental amateur dramatic society, The Unnamed Society.

The Unnamed Society was the brainchild of designer Francis Sladen-Smith.  Other members during the 1920s were: illustrator/designer William Grimmond; artist/designer Karl Hagedorn; designers Georgia Pearce and Lilian Reburn; and drama historian Geoffrey Whitworth.  The Society’s members wrote most of the early plays that the Society put on but they also produced works by H R Barbor and Harold Brighouse (author of Hobson’s Choice).

            Source for further information on The Unnamed Society: the book The Unnamed Society

            (See the Sources section for details).

1916    Though he was no longer a member of Surrey photographic survey’s committee, Stanley was joint author with H D Gower and W W Topley of The Camera as Historian, a ‘how-to’ book for groups wanting to carry out photographic surveys of their district.  It was based on their experiences doing the survey of Surrey. Published London: Sampson Low, Marston and Co Ltd 1916.

 

1917    Publication:

The Origin of British Trade: the Commercial Library. 

 

May 1918

            Winifred Austin died of complications following a burst appendix.

Summer 1918

Stanley’s mother Lizzie Jast died, aged 80.  She had lived with him in Croydon and Manchester.

These two events seem to have released a spring of creativity in Stanley; to help deal with the grief, he started to write plays and possibly poetry as well.

 

October 1918

Stanley’s play The Lover and the Dead Woman was performed by the Manchester-based amateur drama group The Unnamed Society.

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

December 1918

The Unnamed Society’s Christmas pantomime was a version of Aladdin, prepared by Stanley.

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

 

1919    Stanley supervised the opening of Manchester’s first library of commerce.

            Source: ODNB.

 

March 1919

            The Unnamed Society did a production of Stanley’s play The Geisha’s Wedding

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

December 1919

            The Unnamed Society did a production of Stanley’s play The Loves of the Elements

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

           

1920

Stanley became a member of The Clarion Table, a lunch club for professional people in Manchester.  Millicent Murby was the club’s only female member.

            Source for the date: ODNB. 

 

February 1920

The Unnamed Society performed three plays by Stanley on the same bill: The Call of the Ninth Wave; The Eugenic Cupid; and Estelle Discovers Herself

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

April 1920

Stanley’s boss Charles Sutton retired and Stanley took over as chief librarian of Manchester library service.

 

January 1921

            The Unnamed Society did a production of Stanley’s Venus and the Shepherdess

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

October 1921

            The Unnamed Society performed Stanley’s Noh-theatre inspired play Harbour

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

 

April 1922

The Unnamed Society did a short season at the Margaret Morris Theatre in Chelsea.  Stanley’s The Lover and the Dead Woman, and Harbour, were amongst the plays they

            performed there

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

October 1922

The Unnamed Society performed Stanley’s play The Room.  It was on the same bill as artist Gwen John’s A Tale That Is Told.

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

1923    First publication of fictional works by Stanley: The Lover and the Dead Woman, and Five Other Plays in Verse.  London: George Routledge and Sons Ltd.  NY: EP Dutton and Co.

April 1923

The Unnamed Society did a production of Stanley’s play about the death of Lorenzo de Medici: A Florentine Irony.  It was on the same bill as Harold Brighouse’s The Happy Hangman

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923

November 1923

            The Unnamed Society performed Stanley’s play The Repentance of Melpomene.

            Sources: book The Unnamed Society and the published edition of The Lover and the     Dead Woman and Five Other Plays 1923 

 

1924    Stanley was president of The Unnamed Society when it was moving to new, bigger premises and trying to raise its profile nationwide

Early 1925

            Stanley Jast and Millicent Murby were married, in Kensington.

 

1926-31

Stanley was librarian in charge of Manchester Corporation’s project to build the famous circular central library.

 

1927    Publication: The Child as Reader

1927    Publication: The Planning of a Great Library

November 1927

            Stanley’s play A Florentine Irony was performed by the Festival Theatre Cambridge.

 

1928    Publication: The Provision of Books for Children in Elementary Schools

 

1929    Stanley was a member of a delegation sent by Manchester Corporation to the USA.

Source: Stanley’s own Who’s Who entry, undated but probably 1940-41; printed as part of the title pages of his What it All Means (published 1941).

January 1929

Stanley’s five-act play Shah Jahan, based on the life of the emperor and builder of the Taj Mahal, was performed by The Unnamed Society; the last play by him they put on. 

            Millicent Jast acted as producer.

Source: Shah Jahan: A Play in Five Acts.  London: Grafton and Co 1934.  The book is dedicated to Millicent Jast.

 

1930    The foundation stone of Manchester Corporation’s new library was laid.  Stanley was made president of the Library Association.

1931    Stanley made two radio broadcasts, later published as Libraries and Living.

1932    Stanley retired.  He and Millicent went to live at Beckington, just outside Bath.

 

Date unknown but probably after Stanley retired: he (and presumably Millicent) made a trip to the West Indies and Mexico.  At some time during his life he also visited Morocco.

 

1932    Publication: Libraries and Living.

 

1934    Shah Jahan was published; Stanley’s last play.

 

1935    Stanley wrote the introduction to Henry A Sharp’s Cataloguing: A Textbook for Use in Libraries

 

1939    Stanley’s last book on library organisation was published: Libraries and the Community. There was a second edition of this, published 1945.

1939    Stanley attended the annual meeting of the Library Association for the last time.  He had been the Association’s dominant personality since James Duff Brown’s death.

1939    Stanley and Millicent lived for a short time in Penzance, while Stanley was working preparing his theosophical talks for publication. 

1940    Stanley and Millicent moved to Twickenham.

 

1941    Stanley’s talks to the TS groups in Croydon and Manchester were published as What It All Means. 

Source: What it all Means.  London: T Werner Laurie Ltd of Cobham House, 24-26 Blackfriars Lane.

 

25 December 1944

            Stanley Jast died.

 

Probably June 1946

            Stanley’s Poems and Epigrams was published, privately.

Source: Poems and Epigrams, printed for private circulation by Wadsworth and Co, The Rydal Press Keighley.  There’s no printed publication date but ‘June 1946' is written in pencil inside the front cover; it’s not clear who by.

1966

Fry and Munford’s biography of Stanley Jast published as part of a series on noted librarians. 

 

 

I found two pictures of Stanley Jast, both from late in his life, both published in books and - unfortunately - both difficult for the man or woman in the street to gain access to though there are copies of both of them in the British Library.  The first picture is a drawing of Stanley in relaxed mode, with a cigarette hanging out of his mouth.  It’s by artist, illustrator and designer, and fellow member of The Unnamed Society, William Grimmond.  Done around 1924 it was published on p8 of The Unnamed Book (see the Sources section).  The second is a photograph taken by F W Schmidt of Manchester and printed on pii of the 1946 book of Stanley’s poems.  The photo is undated but likely to be from before 1932 and may have been taken in connection with Stanley’s retirement.  It’s more formal than the drawing, of course - he’s wearing collar and tie, and there’s no cigarette.  Both show a man with thinning hair on top, a bushy moustache and a slight slouch in his posture.  In the photo, though, there’s less hair, and the moustache has gone grey.

 

 

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.  Please note, though, that the records of the Amen-Ra Temple in Edinburgh were destroyed in 1900/01.  The records of the Horus Temple at Bradford have not survived beyond 1896 either, but there’s a history of the TS in Bradford on the web (though originally written in 1941) at www.ts-bradford.org.uk/theosoc/btshisto.htm in which a lot of the same people who joined the GD are mentioned.  After surviving some difficult times in the 1890s, Bradford TS still seems to be going strong (as at December 2012).  In April 2012 the History page was updated with the names of all the members at least up to 1941.

 

The members of the GD at its Horus Temple were rather a bolshy lot, and needed a lot of careful management!

 

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 wide variety of family trees on the web.

 

Useful source for business and legal information: London Gazette and its Scottish counterpart Edinburgh Gazette.

 

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.

 

SOURCES FOR LEWIS/LOUIS STANLEY JAST

Fry and Munford:

Louis Stanley Jast: A Biographical Sketch turned out to be m longer than I’d expected.  Published London: The Library Association 1966.  By W G Fry and W A Munford.  Fry is former deputy City Librarian Manchester Public Libraries; Munford is Director-General of the National Library of the Blind.

ODNB volume 29 which has Fry and Munford as a source but also has some different information: p816

 

ON JOHN WHITELEY

The Library World volume 14 1912 p17 reported the death of John Whiteley, formerly chief librarian of Halifax borough council. 

 

JAMES DUFF BROWN has a biography in the same series as Jast’s own: James Duff Brown 1862-1914: Portrait of a Library Pioneer by William Arthur Munford published Library Association 1968.  There’s a wikipedia page using Munford as a source.

World Encyclopaedia of Library and Information Services by Robert Wedgeworth 1993: pp149-150.

 

CLARION TABLE

Fry and Munford used the Minutes of the Manchester Clarion Club 1913-21.  Plus a typescript by S J Berry: The Clarion Table: the Record of a Manchester Luncheon Club, written at the request of some members.  Both these items are in the manuscript collection of Manchester Corporation.  I haven’t seen either of them myself.

 

UNNAMED SOCIETY later the Manchester Library Theatre see its website www.librarytheatre.com: founded 1952; performs in that circular library built during Jast’s tenure; still in operation.

My main source: The Unnamed Book printed for the Unnamed Society by Sherratt and Hughes, 34 Cross Street, Manchester.  1924.

There’s information on The Unnamed Society in British Theatre and the Red Peril: the Portrayal of Communism 1917-45 by Steve Nicholson. Exeter: University of Exeter Press 1999.  P22-24 in the chapter The Revolution Will Not be Dramatised.  The incident being discussed took place in 1931.  Stanley isn’t mentioned by Nicholson but was probably still a member of The Unnamed Society at the time.

 

 

 

Copyright SALLY DAVIS

8 October 2013