Thursday, April 16, 2015

Hermine greets Yanks, wants Coffee

April 16, 1945

Princess Hermine, the widow of former German Emperor Wilhelm II, who died in 1941, sits "upright in her chair, fingering the long strand of pearls around her neck."  For the past two days,  Hermine and other members of her family have been in American custody since the Americans "came to her 84-room castle," Schloss Rossla, where she and six others," and are now using it as a "temporary Army command post."

Hermine spoke to a reporter from the American wire service, United Press.  "Technically, we are still enemies. We are German. You are American."  

She gazed at a photograph on a table near the window -- a photograph of Wilhelm II taken three weeks before his death at Doorn.

"I loved him.  He was a poor old man with the wrong sort of children, but I loved him.  He loved Germany and I love Germany.   By the way, do you have any of the latest American books on politics?  And do you by chance have any real coffee?"

The other members of her family who are at the castle include her sister, Princess Ida, her daughters,  Princess Caroline (known as Carmo) and Princess Henriette, the wife of Prince Franz Joseph of Prussia, and her two young children, Prince Franz Wilhelm and Prince Franz Friedrich.

Schloss Rossla is the home of Princess Ida and her husband, Christoph Martin, the Prince of Stolberg-Rossla.

Princess Hermine and her family arrived at the castle two months ago from her home in Silesia, leaving only an hour before the Russians "overran her refuge."

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