Category: Jones 1000

#17 Neptune's Daughter, Louisa May Alcott

Allcox, Alcott and May

AMOS BRONSON ALCOTT AND ABIGAIL MAY WERE MARRIED after an unhurried engagement on Sunday, May 23, 1830, at King’s Chapel on Tremont Street, Germantown Pennsylvania, the outskirts even then of Philadelphia. Bronson noted the day in his journal writing:

[Most] Agreeable to preceding expectation, I was this day married by Rev. Mr. Greenwood, at King’s Chapel. Passed the evening at Col. May’s, and came to Mrs. Newell’s, my place of board, with my friend, Miss Abigail May, after the civilities of the evening.

The story of Louisa May Alcott and her father, John Matteson. New York: W. W. Norton & Co., c. 2007

Bronson’s father did not attend, as the year before his father, Joseph Alcox, had died at the age of fifty-seven. Bronson and Abba’s (Abigail’s nickname) first daughter born March 15, 1831, named Anna after Bronson’s mother. Their second daughter was born on November 29th, 1832. They named her for Abigail’s recently departed sister, Mrs. Samuel Greeve, Louisa May. They were to have 4 daughters in total.

Miss Alcott has a grand trine in Earth and is a bucket with a Saturn rising reflective of her dark coloring. Her ascendant Virgo 18 [HS] is Mechanics Tools, a capable use of that which is hand. The keyword is Practicality. This is supported by her chart where there is over-weighting anywhere within, but instead a rather pleasant balance but then on September 23, 1846, when she was 13 coincides with the family leaving Pennsylvania to move to Massachusetts.

Schoolgirl loves

Susan Cheever’s biography, American Bloomsbury, tells us that had an unrequited love for Henry David Thoreau, 15 years old than she. Cheever implies that Louisa May never married, if not him, then no one and he had sights on another, Ellen Sewall, who married another, the Reverend Joseph Osgood.

Thoreau’s first love poem was written to Luoy (her nickname) Alcott, but Cheever believes that these were “platonic” loves of a teacher to a student. She is probably right as his second love poem was to Edmund Sewall, Ellen’s brother. By the time Alcott realized that this relationship would not culminate, she had waited too long and was an old maid; Neptune blinds us to the reality of the situation because it too unsympathetic and cold to accept.

Dorothea Dix

Miss Dix first appeared in our pages in the article on North Carolina. Here she enters as the country’s first supervisor of nursing for the Civil War. Upon her appointment, Dorothea called out to all maiden women between the ages of 35 and 56 to become nurses and help in the Civil War effort; Louisa replied yes. While by 1860 she had a modicum of success for her short stories, but was unsatisfied and wanted something momentous and grand — she thought a full-length novel should be her next undertaking.

Louisa, though, had no grand plot for her novel and she thought the War effort may give her some further stories and experiences — an idea no different from the young boys who go off to fight in the Great Adventure. Alas, that did not work out too well. She contracted typhoid fever early on, and with no penicillin yet discovered, was forced to return home along with a newly acquired addiction to morphine.

It was several years before Louisa recovered from the fever, and when she did, it was like arising from a long-needed sleep for she felt a surge of inspiration in the spring of 1868 and began to write Little Women, a four hundred page manuscript. Her publisher, Thomas Niles of Roberts Bros., thought it dull. She complained of her sorrow to her pen pal, Emily (pen pals at 26 Sagittarius 08 in the fourth house opposite her Midheaven in Gemini) Dickinson, who told her to send it to her publisher; good tip, it worked.

The Neptune connection

Louisa has Neptune at 25 Capricorn 12 in the fifth house ([HS] A Tibetan Mandala, as one must have a singular focus and strength to open doorways into world’s purpose. This scenario doubles up on her creativity showering over into her environment via music, gardening and art (all highlighted by the sisters in Little Women but Jo who has no feminine crafts to her name but writing). Neptune here gives Louisa the desire to be noticed for herself, and her creative abilities, and hence her desire for a larger scale work.

The fifth house also deals with children, and here in a fantastic children’s world, in an almost too perfect household where no one is scolded or disciplined, but are free spirits that grow up to be lovely angels. If one reads her Little Men and Women stories carefully, there are lots of hints of both the boys and the girls are undisciplined and run wild.

Louisa herself said she was when young like “a wild horse” which Uranus rules, and Jo gets the same reprimand from Laurie’s patron that her father admonished on her to curtail her ways, but in both cases the advice goes unheeded. In Jo’s case, Laurie looks again — there are four sisters — and with his Uncle’s watchful eye chose again. Perhaps looking at her chart, her life and works, she felt that wild heedlessness of her youth turned Thoreau away. Whether it is in the Little Women book or movie, it is a hard scene to swallow.

No doubt Thoreau’s rejection and her dependence on morphine played into the Neptune-Drug connection more than what is healthy. Like a bird in a springtime mating ritual, she displayed her wares, flouted her talents only to fail. Birds have short lives and an instinctual understanding of place; human beings are not so lucky and for Louisa with her Neptune placed in the house of love and creativity it was a heavy blow. Perhaps like the lover in Phaedrus, who fell into madness, morphine softened the blow and through helped her create a beautiful world, so idyllic that no matter how far one is from 19th Century New England, one longs for it like the mythic White Christmas.


  • You can read more at the Louisa May Alcott House in Concord, Massachusetts.
  • Little Women and her other books are here. They are wonderful and better than the abbreviated movies.

#9 Jane Addams, social reformer

At her death on May 21st, 1935, John Dewey, Marc Jones mentor and teacher, hailed Miss Addams as the greatest social reformer in America to date. Her parents hailed from Pennsylvania Dutch country, around Lancaster, PA and went west to improve their chances as the land there was either too expensive or overgrazed. They landed in Cedarville, Illinois where their daughter Jane was born.

Her father was a founding member of the Illinois Republican Part and served as an Illinois State Senator (1855–70). He was personal friends with Abraham Lincoln and stumped for him first as senator (1854) and the president, (1860). In her book, Twenty Year at Hull House (complete with many fine illustrations) she gives a full account of her childhood and her decision after graduating from Rockford (Illinois) Female Seminary to take up social reform. The book is not easy reading, but worth the effort.

She won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931 shortly before her death. Hull House in Chicago has since closed.

This chart has been rectified against all known events in her life. Marc Jones states her ascendant is 21 leo 35; we pegged it at 06 Leo 05 or “constellations in the sky”.

#22 Queen Alexandra of England, Princess of Denmark

Alexandra was made of sterner stuff

Albert Edward, Prince of Wales and the son and heir of Queen Victoria was a notorious rake. His parents recognized this when he was very young and arranged a marriage hoping to keep him from getting into further trouble. The wife chosen for him was the eldest daughter of Prince Christian of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg and her mother was Princess Louise of Hesse-Kassel.  Other siblings were George (George I of Greece), Dagmar (later Empress of all the Russias via her marriage to Czar Alexander III, Thyra (Crown Princess of Hanover) and Prince Valdemar of Denmark.

Alexandra Caroline Mary Charlotte Louisa Julia of Denmark was born in Copenhagen on December 1, 1844 at 6:15 in the morning. Her rising symbol made her a good choice “fasting pilgrims outside the castle of the king” at 18 Scorpio 57 as she and Edward spent much of their lives apart — her in Sandringham and he in London.

On March 10, 1863 at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, Edward and Alexandra were married, her wearing a magnificent gown by Worth of Paris. They had six children including Prince Albert Victor.

While Queen Victoria chose the day, a month after her own to Albert, calendar wise, the chart was perfect for the bride. Notice the red arrow where her new Ascendant of 28 Cancer 44 is conjunct her natal Part of Fortune in the 8th house:P as her maidenhood ends, a new life as queen begins. Her Nodes surprisingly stay the same at Gemini 11 [HS a baptism the process of beginning something momentous, a sacred induction]. Her NMC is now opposite her TSun supporting again the major rite of passage she was undertaking as her TPart of Fortune is conjunct her natal Uranus in the 4th — her wishes have become true but alas (though oob) with a wrinkle — her husband will never be true (Mars as the T-Cross leg on the 7th house cusp). But Alexandra knew that.

Edwards peccadilloes

From the top left are Daisy Greville, Lilly Langtry, and Jennie Jerome. The bottom two portraits are of Agnes Keyser, and Alice Keppel.

Throughout their marriage, Edward had several well known mistresses —  the actress Daisy Greville, herself the descendant of two of England’s King’s paramours and for whom it is thought Daisy of The Great Gatsby was named ; Lily Langtry the actress, Agnes Keyser, the only unmarried woman during their affair, American Jennie Jerome the future mother of Winston Churchill and whom Alexandra was the most fond; and most famous of all Alice Keppel, the great grandmother of the Duchess of Cornwall, Camilla Parker Bowles. Despite her well known possessiveness, Queen Alexandra allowed Mrs. Keppel to visit King Edward VII on his deathbed.

The Queen was a bucket with a moon handle at 17 Leo 28, a castle-dweller, one who needs to be alone and undisturbed.

She had a scar (Saturn 03 Aquarius 17 in the 2nd, Taurus rules the neck) and wore high necked gowns or jeweled necklaces similar to her portrait above. On Edward’s coronation day she wore the gorgeous Dagmar necklace, especially made for the occasion (see the closeup below). She died at Sandringham House on November 20, 1925 from a heart attack and was buried in Windsor next to Edward, having outlived him by 15 years.

#893 In the service of the Queen, Alfred Lord Tennyson

Who was Tennyson?

Alfred Tennyson was the most popular poet of the Victorian age. With royal patronage, Queen Victoria made in Poet Laureate in 1850, his poetry defined an era. There was a time when his poems, particularly the Charge of the Light Brigade at the Battle of Balaclava during the Crimean War. were de rigeur for high school literature.

Tennyson had a superb ability to pen quotable lines, something quite difficult, but the key to memorization. The Brigade, a not very long poem, but highly alliterative thus keeping the meter flowing, are the memorable verses of “Theirs not to reason why, Theirs but to do and die: Into the valley of Death Rode the six hundred. ” Thrilling “Cannon to right of them, Cannon to left of them, Cannon behind them volleyed and thundered.”

His poor beginnings

He was born August 6th, 1809, at Somersby, Lincolnshire on the east coast of England, north of Boston, the fourth of twelve children. Despite having wealthy relatives, the Tennyson’s lived in relative poverty not only because of their poor health — most of his siblings suffered from one kind of disabling condition or another—melancholia, insanity, opium addiction, alcoholism and epilepsy. The last was tremendously fears because those who saw its victims fell suddenly under its violent spell were horrified by the sudden violence.  Even today, epilepsy can be still difficult to treat. (Fyodor Dostoevsky the Russian literary great and contemporary of Count Lev Tolstoy (War and Peace; Anna Karenina) suffered from this disease too. He wrote several pieces on the theme, the most renown The Possessed (where the possession takes some strange turns both mentally and politically) and The Idiot, but the malady is throughout his oeuvre).

His father, a minister, because of ill health increasingly took to drink — the major health tonic of the day — and under it grew increasingly mentally unstable and too physically weak so he could no longer give sermons and thus bring in money for his family. Things changed in 1827 when he could go to Oxford University. This was a transformative moment — shown by Pluto in the 3rd of communications — because it gave him the skills to create inspiring poetry. He made great  friends like Edward FitzGerald and William Makepeace Thackeray; and the college he attended boasted of eminent former members as William Wordsworth and Lord Byron. But it was his friendship with the seventeen-year-old Arthur Henry Hallam, son of a leading Whig historian that made the great impression.

The friendship came to a tragic and abrupt close when Hallam died of a cerebral hemorrhage at the age of twenty-two. Tennyson said , “as near perfect as mortal man can be,” and his friend in a long melancholic revelrie that lasted until his own more than half a century later.

Yet, within a year of entrance, Tennyson won the Chancellors Gold Medal for his poem Timbuctoo. This poem, a majestic, though an abbreviated echo of Lord Byron’s Childe Harold, hearkens to a far away Ancient African land of Timbuctoo where possibilities of one’s imagination are the only limits to the magic it can create, much like Percy Shelley’s Epipsychidion, click here for that one.

the Prince and Alfred

Surprisingly, after a brilliant start, several of his poem afterward got harsh reviews. Thus our soulful poet went into retreat and stopped publishing, though it seems kept writing, for the next 9 years or roughly a 1/3 of a Saturn rotation. That’s important because Saturn is conjunct his ascendant at 27 Scorpio 13 [a military band at march] making not only his father’s illness and misfortune affect him deeply but also all criticism and thoughtless sleights affect him disproportionately.

Our man Jones has 12:05 am. We totally disagree because there is nothing in the 5th house of the England’s great poet, but one can compare the two and decide. The Counting Crows get the nod here for their Rain King — actually written for Saul Bellow and his Henderson the Rain King but is evocative of Tennyson’s Timbuctoo- that is rather à propos no matter which time you pick for a man with so much water in his chart.

Then in 1842 coincident with Neptune’s discovery, he published again and this time, the attitude towards poetry and Tennyson had changed (Neptune 04 Sagittarius 07 Rx [a radical magazine gives a man high exaltation and dramatic force to succeed] and granted a civil pension. Now financially secure, Tennyson released his great elegiac poem, In Memoriam A.H. H. (Arthur Henry Hallam).

This is a full-blown poem complete with 131 sections, a prologue, and epilogue mourning not only his friend’s death but also weaving into his personal loss, Tennyson’s remorse over the contemporary dwindling of Christian faith (he wrote that the Hermetic Occultist Giordano Bruno and he had the same religious outlook), the pursuit of money (Charles Dickens not to miss a beat, wrote at the same time in prose about this latter issue in several books culminating in his admixture the Christmas Carol) and the ramifications of Charles Darwin and his theories of evolution.

The timing of Prince Albert’s visit to Tennyson is vague, but at some point the Prince went to see the poet on the Isle of Wight to discuss the Memoriam because of John Stuart Mill’s great praise of the poem. Tennyson was flattered, showcased his works and read some of his more recent works. It was a successful meeting and the Prince of England, recommended Tennyson to be William Wordsworth’s (author of Tintern Abbey) successor as poet laureate on November 5 1850. This of course brought his university years full circle, and flush with funds, Tennyson married Emma Sellwood shortly thereafter.

Fitzgerald served another queen, his wife Zelda. The parallels of the two charts highlight all that went wrong with the American’s prestigious talent (Jupiter on the cusp of the 7th conjunct, his South Node or his snobbish disdain of thinking himself too good to work for money.  This became his undoing because him and Zelda’s reckless lifestyle made him even more dependent upon a salary, but his inability to accept the role of a “worker” and develop his poetic insight, instead made him a slave to them and ultimately led to his self-destruction.) The Fitzgerald essay explores this further.

Baron Tennyson died on 6 October 1892 at 83 years old & was buried at Westminster Abbey. His eldest son, Hallam (named for his friend) received his title 2nd Baron Tennyson and since he had been his father’s personal secretary, wrote a biography of him. Here is Hallam’s version of that great Victorian death-bed scene:

The tendency to fatal syncope may be said to have really commenced about 10 A.M. on Wednesday, and on Thursday, 6 October [1892], at 1:35 A.M., the great poet breathed his last. Nothing could have been more striking than the scene during the last few hours. On the bed a figure of breathing marble, flooded and bathed in the light of the full moon streaming through the oriel window; his hand clasping the Shakespeare which he asked for but recently, and which he had kept by him to the end; the moonlight, the majestic figure as he lay there, “drawing thicker breath,” irresistibly brought to our minds his own “Passing of Arthur.”

Hallam Tennyson,  Alfred Lord Tennyson: A Memoir by His Son(1897) 

Hallam then went onto to become the second Governor-General of Australia. When he retired from his post in 1904, he returned to England where he died 15 years or so later.

We continually vet and review our essays for accuracy and typographical errors. This was one edited on 15 November 2019.

#33 Louis Alter, Composer / Pianist

Louis Alter was born in Haverhill, Massachusetts on June 18, 1902 at 7 o’clock in the morning. Alter played in vaudeville houses as the accompanist for headliners Irène Bordoni and Nora Bayes appearing with Bayes continuously until her death in 1928. Since he had previously written some songs for Broadway shows, Alter concentrated on that after Bayes’ death.

His first hit was “Manhattan Serenade” (1929), originally an instrumental that later became the theme music of the Easy Aces radio program.

Alter is a see-saw temperament type with a Moon in Scorpio in the 5th suggesting an easy and romantic style to his compositions. His Moon is also opposite Venus suggesting that his best compositions were evocative of a time, place or even a certain person for he was a composer that always needs a muse.

download the louis alter chart.pdf

#38 Andrew MacBeth Anderson, Scots jurist

Andrew Macbeth Anderson, Lord Anderson DL was born on 6 November 1862 at 7 pm, getting an ascendant of 08 Cancer, (HS) or One great eye wreathed in rays and beams where one lives outside his immediate limitations and the gives the world an uncluttered view of the true self — keyword Representation.

His line of vitality or the Scorpio Sun opposing its Taurean moon suggests a constant need for Judge Anderson to affirm his views by continually specializing in one facet of the cosmos after another. He was a see-saw temperament type.

He was a Scottish barrister, judge and Liberal Party politician and eldest son of Charles Enverdale Anderson, Provost of Coupar Angus. Anderson was educated at the High School of Dundee and Edinburgh University and graduated with MA and LL.B degrees. He was awarded the Forensic Prize as the most distinguished law graduate of his year. In 1901, he married Agnes Catherine (“Kate”) Mackay from Midlothian. They had two sons and two daughters

#28 Prince Alfred, son of Victoria and Albert of England

Prince Alfred was born in Windsor Castle on August 6, 1844 at 7:50 am. His biographical data is here; a pleasant but unimpressive man. His son is #29, Prince Alfred of Edinburgh (Alfred Alexander William Ernest Albert) and his daughter Princess Marie Alexandra Victoria, born on 29 October 1875, is #646 as Queen of Roumania.

His chart shows a preponderance of sextiles and an absence of planets in common signs, exemplifying a savoir faire that others found pleasing, but it was his determination by retrogradation in the southern hemisphere that helped attract socially better mates for his children.