Thursday, September 24, 2015

Marchioness of Milford Haven dead at 87

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September 24, 1950

The Dowager Marchioness of Milford Haven died today at Kensington Palace. where "she had lived in retirement for many years," reports the New York Times.  She was 87 years old.

The Dowager Marchioness was the eldest surviving granddaughter of Queen Victoria.

Her three surviving children, Crown Princess Louise of Sweden, Earl Mountbatten of Burma, and Princess Andrew of Greece, were at her bedside when she died.  She had been ill for three weeks.

She was the widow of Prince Louis of Battenberg, her father's first cousin, whom she married in 1884.   Prince Louis adopted the surname Mountbatten during the first World War, and was created the 1st Marquess of Milford Haven by George V in 1917.   He served as First Sea Lord, and died in 1921.

The second Marquess died in 1938, and his son, David, is the third Marquess.

King George VI has ordered a week of family mourning for the Dowager Marchioness, whose grandson, the Duke of Edinburgh, is married to Princess Elizabeth, heir to the British throne.

The Marchioness' body will be taken to the chapel at St. James's Palace tomorrow, and then to  Whippinham on the Isle of Wight for burial later this week.

Princess Victoria Alberta Elisabeth Mathilde Marie was the eldest daughter of Grand Duke Ludwig IV of Hesse and By Rhine and Princess Alice Maud Mary, the second daughter and third child of Queen Victoria.     She attended the wedding of her grandson, Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark to Princess Elizabeth, and was one of the godparents the the baptism of her great-grandson, Prince Charles,

Numerous tragedies "overshadowed her life."  Her mother and youngest sister, Marie, died from typhoid fever in 1878.   Two of her sisters, Grand Duchess Elisabeth and Empress Alexandra of Russia were killed  by the Bolsheviks in 1918.  Her brother, Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig died in 1938.  A month later, her nephew, Hereditary Grand Duke Georg Donatus, his wife, Cecilie (Prince Philip's sister), their two sons and his mother, were killed in a plane crash at Ostend, Belgium.  They were en route to the marriage of Georg Donatus' younger brother, Prince Ludwig, to  the Hon. Margaret Geddes.

Lady Milford Haven is survived by her three children,  Princess Alice (Princess Andrew of Greece), Crown Princess Louise of Sweden, and Lord Mountbatten of Burma,  eight grandchildren:  The Princess of Hohenlohe-Langenburg (Princess Margarita of Greece), the Margravine of Baden (Princess Theodora of Greece),  Princess Georg Wilhelm of Hanover (Princess Sophie of Greece),  The Duke of Edinburgh, Lady Tatiana Mountbatten,  Lord Milford Haven,  Lady Brabourne (Lady Patricia Mountbatten) and Lady Pamela Mountbatten, and numerous great-grandchildren.

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