Fr. Charles Rey, SJ
Physicist, Astronomer, Meteorologist



Fr. Charles Rey, SJ on Jersey Scott 294
JERSEY, 1982, one of the philosophy & science se-tenant pair of the Links with France issue, Scott 294
the other honors Teilhard de Chardin, SJ

Father Charles Rey was born in Dakar, Senegal in 1910, the son of a French colonial official. Forced from France by anticlerical laws, the Jesuits had set up their School of Philosophy at the Maison St. Louis on the Isle of Jersey, and in his course of studies in the Society of Jesus Rey did his philosophical studies there and worked in the astronomical observatory founded there by the Jesuits in 1894 and pictured on this stamp. After missionary work and further training in astronomy in Madagascar, he returned to Jersey in 1934 as director of the observatory and worked there for the next 47 years. Meteorology was his specialty, but his experience in seismology in Madagascar led him to introduce a seismograph to the observatory, where it still remains and functions. He was skillful in making instruments, many of which are still in working condition, like the anemotachymeter behind him on the stamp. During the World War II, when the Germans occupied the island and part of the Maison St. Louis, Rey utilized those skills in making crystal sets, one of which was hidden in a pocket watch that he delighted in looking at in the presence of the Germans. Rey continued to work on even when the Jesuit college at Maison St. Louis closed in 1954, when the other Jesuits left Jersey in the early 1960's, and when the States of Jersey took over the observatory in 1974. Only a broken leg in December of 1979 forced his retirement. He moved to France where he died in March of 1981.