Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Anita's fiance a "poor bargain"

July 21, 1909

The Los Angeles Times today has an exclusive dispatch about Prince Miguel de Braganza, who is engaged to marry Miss Anita Stewart. According to the recent marriage contract, Miss Stewart's mother will "hand over" $1,000,000 to Miguel on the day he marries Anita. There are no strings attached to this dowry. But it seems that Anita, the daughter of Mrs. James Henry Smith and William Rhinelander Stewart, has made a "poor bargain," for the marriage.

Perhaps the "best thing" to say about Miguel is that "he is not quite as bad" as his younger brother, Francisco, but Prince Miguel has been ousted from several European clubs, ostracized by society, dishonorably discharged from the army of the nation that gave his family refuge and barred from every royal court."

Americans may not be able to "comprehend the status of a man barred from European clubs and society." The Austrian army has found him to be "unendurable."

Mrs. Smith will be providing the money to Miguel, as Anita has only the income on $500,000 of railroad stock and this comprises her all of her personal fortune."
Miss Stewart and Prince Miguel expect to be married in October. As Miguel's wife, Anita Stewart "cannot be received in any court of Europe or in society anywhere on the continent."

Miguel's family has been in exile since 1835, and they are barred by law from entering Portugal.


Allan Raymond said...

The income from only $500,000 way back in 1909 sounds a good proposition to me.

Thanks for posting the detail.

I didn't realize until today that Miguel de Braganza was also responsible for the death of Prince Albert of Saxony (1875-1900) younger brother of King Friedrich Augustus III of Saxony. It appears Miguel was "showing off" and caused the wheels of his carriage to hit the wheels of Albert's carriage whilst both were travelling from some country house.

Allan Raymond

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

$500,000 is more than 21 million dollars today