18th - 19th Century
Stationer Lord Mayors
Until the middle of the eighteenth century, all Lord Mayors of London had to belong to one of the 'Great Twelve' companies and members of lesser companies, of which the Stationers was one, had to 'translate' from their original company to become eligible for office. So the first 'Stationer' Lord Mayor in 1676, Sir Thomas Davies, Pepys's bookseller, had to translate to the Clothworkers. The first true Stationer Lord Mayor was Sir Stephen Janssen (Lord Mayor 1785); Stationers have held the office a record twenty-eight times since.
From the Middle Ages no man was allowed to trade in the City of London unless he resided there and belonged to a Guild, later a livery company. In 1858 an Act of Common Council (the City's parliament) abolished this restriction which, as the years had passed, had become a dead letter.
Until the early twentieth century the most usual way of joining the Company was by serving an apprenticeship to a freeman or liveryman. Although the system gradually declined, the Stationers' Company is unusual among livery companies in insisting that its members work in the book or allied trades.
The Company's School (1861-1984)
In 1852 the Company was permitted to use certain ancient charities, which no longer had a purpose, to set up a school intended to be for the education of sons of members of the Company. The Stationers' Company's School opened in Bolt Court, Fleet Street in 1861, but soon outgrew its premises; moreover the City was ceasing to be a residential area and in 1894 the school moved to Hornsey in north London. It was a grammar school until 1967 when it joined the Comprehensive system and in 1984, the then Inner London Authority decided the school was no longer needed and it closed its doors even though, in its relatively short life, it had acquired a reputation for good education for boys, latterly of many ethnic backgrounds.