Jannis “Jan” <I>Bryant</I> Bartell

Jannis “Jan” Bryant Bartell

New York, USA
Death 18 Jun 1973 (aged 51)
New Rochelle, Westchester County, New York, USA
Burial Cremated
Memorial ID 74654140 · View Source
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Jannis (Jan) Bryant Bartell, American author, was born in New York City in 1921 (1940 US Census) and died in New Rochelle, New York in 1973. She was the daughter of the late William and Bessie Schaffel Bryant.

Best known as the author of "Spindrift: Spray From a Psychic Sea," she was also a poet, lecturer and off-Broadway actress. She appeared in such plays as 'Bell, Book and Candle,' and 'Night Must Fall.' Her poetry was published in several magazines.

Jan was also an animal lover who adored dogs, rescuing one from the New York City streets and one from a New York pound. She wrote a tribute to her beloved Irish Wire-Hair Terrier Penelope, soon after Penny's death in 1962. The tribute, entitled "Penelope, I Love You," was later published in Pet Digest. (Penelope is buried at the Bide-a-Wee Association Pet Cemetery Memorial Park, Wantagh, Nassau County. New York in Plot A-36. FAG Memorial #131600561)

'Spindrift' relates the experiences of Bartell and her husband Fred G. Bartell while living in apartments in the buildings at 14-16 W.10th Street in the Greenwich Village section of New York City. According to the book, the apartments were haunted and Jan, at first a skeptic, underwent a series of unpleasant experiences that led her to modify her views on the paranormal. The book further chronicles Jan Bartell's psychic development and the toll this took on an already unstable personality.

Jan and her husband were complex individuals. Fred, a WWII combat veteran, suffered from PTSD which made him at times a difficult companion. Nonetheless, Fred had a successful career as manager of several fashionable restaurants in New York City, including the Riverboat, once located in the Empire State Building. Jan, according to those who knew her in the West 10th Street buildings, was a very spoiled and neurotic person who also probably suffered from clinical depression. Since there was little that could be done for this problem in the 1950's and 60's, it became a major factor in her life and certainly colored her writing. It is also believed that she attempted suicide on more than one occasion while living in the apartments.

Jan possessed strong psychic abilities but unfortunately approached the paranormal with fear and trepidation. She certainly made attempts to educate herself on paranormal issues in order to better understand what she believed was taking place but this brought no resolution to her fears. Jan went so far as to have Hans Holzer, a self-anointed psychic "expert" and ghost hunter, attempt to communicate with the spirit Jan believed was haunting her home and encourage it to leave. This proved to be a failure and added to Bartell's distress.

In 1973, troubled with the social and economic changes affecting their neighborhood, Bartell and her husband left their beloved Greenwich Village, living in various locations throughout NYC, but never settling down in one place for long. Jan and Fred finally moved to suburban New Rochelle where they bought a home and Fred continued his restaurant work in NYC. In her New Rochelle home, Jan Bartell apparently committed suicide on June 18, 1973, just prior to the publication of her book.

In 2003-2004, four other researchers and I worked for well over a year to establish the above information about Jan Bartell who, we believe, would have had a long and wonderful literary career if she had lived.

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  • Created by: Brenda
  • Added: 9 Aug 2011
  • Find a Grave Memorial 74654140
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Jannis “Jan” Bryant Bartell (20 Dec 1921–18 Jun 1973), Find a Grave Memorial no. 74654140, ; Maintained by Brenda (contributor 47437927) Cremated.