Friday, December 9, 2016
Edward remains secluded at Fort Belvedere: will he abdicate?
December 9, 1936
King Edward VIII remains secluded at Fort Belvedere as the "nation and empire" prepares for the inevitable: the "first voluntary abdication" in the thousand year plus British monarchy.
The King's decision has "racked his people with suspense for an almost unbearable week," and the announcement will be made, perhaps tomorrow, in the House of Commons. It will probably be in a message from the King, which will read by Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin, and it will state categorically if Edward has chosen to renounce the American-born twice divorced Mrs, Wallis Simpson or abdicate his throne.
Tonight, Mr. Baldwin read to his colleagues in the Cabinet a note he had just received from the King. From the "grave faces of the Ministers," and the "incessant activity" that is going on tonight in the Commons, one can surmise that King Edward VIII has "expressed his willingness to abdicate."
Government officials believe that it is important to keep Princess Elizabeth in the direct line of succession. They feel that "even with a very quiet King in Buckingham Palace, his little Scottish wife and his golden-haired children will make up" for the publicity value that Edward lacks. It is a "tonic" to know that the king's subjects will have another "reigning Queen in the offing and a Queen Elizabeth at that."
It is hoped that the hope of the future will allow the British people to forget Edward and give their "undivided loyalty" to the new king and his family.