Sunday, May 31, 2009

Another birthday

Today - June 1 - Edison celebrates his 12th birthday. In October 1998, my husband and I were walking to Thomas Edison High School to buy our Halloween pumpkin, when Bill spotted a rather emaciated cat coming in and out of a storm drain. I ran back home to get a can of cat food. The food was left by the drain, and soon enough, the cat emerged again, and scarfed down the meal. For the next two weeks, Bill and I returned every day to the drain. We brought a crowbar, and I figured out how to open the drain cover. The highs school has a veterinary program, and we spoke to the teacher. Students tried to trap the cat, to no avail. Finally, after two weeks of coming every evening with food, Bill and I were able to trap the cat. We brought the cat home, locked put in him in the bathroom so he would not have any contact with the other cats ... just in case, he had a disease. The next morning, we took him to the vet, where we left him for a checkup. The vet called later in the morning to say that the cat had only minor issues, such as roundworm, all of which were easily treatable. He was all skin and bones, and the vet thought he was about 18 months. The vet told us we had a little sweetheart. Bill and I looked at each other and said: snip him. In other words, we were going to add to the family again. Louis, my Maine Coon, didn't care. He was the alpha cat, and Mommy's boy. My sensitive Buddy was another matter, and Edison, the name we gave our kitty, was a survivor cat. He traumatized Buddy. In fact, Buddy would not get off our bed for several months. We had to close the door so he would get off to use the litter box. If I picked him up, and carried him out into the hall, he would scream. It was horrible. We nearly got rid of Edison, but I knew that Edison would eventually calm down, and Buddy would be more accepting. One spring morning, Buddy got off the bed, walked into the hall, looked around, and went back on the bed. The next morning, Buddy got off the bed, ran downstairs, looked for Edison, and gave him the third paw!
Edison is much more mellow now -- and no longer skin and bones. At one time, he soared to over 20lbs. Big boned! He has lost some weight, but, unfortunately, cats cannot do crunchies to regain the flat tummy. Edison, who is also known as Edison James Kittycat, is mellow, loves to drink from the spigot, is very quiet, shy, and loves his little sister, Sienna. Edison and Buddy made their peace a long time ago, and Edison tries to protect Buddy from the the diva, Ella.

Too little too late

Gordon Brown, just a wee bit too late

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Medical update on King Constantine

A statement from Queen Anne Marie:

Note the name of the king's cardiologist, John Fruchaud ... who happens to be married to his cousin, Princess Tatiana Radziwill.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Prince Harry is in NYC for the weekend

Prince Harry of Wales, third in line to the British throne, is in the USA and is making his first official visit to the US this weekend. He will be in New York City in connection with his charity, Sentebale. Earlier today, he visited Ground Zero.,8599,1901501,00.html

New Danish prince's baptism date set

The infant son of Prince Joachim and Princess Marie of Denmark will be baptised at the Mogeltonder church on July 26. The names of the prince will be made known at the baptism.

Kira and Anton wonder if Serb cousins will invite them

May 29, 1939

Prince Regent Paul and Princess Olga of Yugoslavia are about to make a State Visit to Berlin, according to the Chicago Daily Tribune. This will be "an important test for the once powerful Habsburg and Hohenzollern families." They wonder if Paul and Olga, "as official guests of the Nazis, will remember their dethroned cousins." Grand Duchess Kira of Russia, who is married to Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia, and Archduke Anton of Austria, described as the "closest relatives of the visitors," are said to be the "most keenly interested" in the visit.

Kira is Olga's first cousin as Kira's late father, Grand Duke Kirill, and Olga's mother, Grand Duchess Helen, were siblings.
She views the matter of the visit "with smiling philosophy." She is happily married to Prince Louis Ferdinand, and she recently returned from Doorn, where she "proudly displayed her young son to the ex-kaiser."

If Paul and Olga treat Kira as a "poor relative," she will "probably display her critical smile."

Embed from Getty Images 

The matter is more serious for Archduke Anton, who is the husband of Princess Ileana of Roumania. He is "going through an ordeal which is even hardier and younger men than the scion of the Habsburgs find quite difficult. The 38-year-old Archduke is "serving in Berlin as a private in the German army." He is required to "stand at attention and take orders."

The archduke is an "expert aviator" and he wants to serve as an officer in the German Air Force, but he must "serve six months as an ordinary private."
It is said that the German dictator Adolf Hitler has no time for the "displaced aristocracy," which makes things even more difficult for Archduke Anton. He would "enjoy a friendly chat" with his Yugoslav relatives. But he does not know if he will be able to leave his barracks during the visit.

The Nazis attitude toward the Habsburgs is illustrated by the "fact that the family was dropped from this year's Almanach de Gotha."

The Nazis have ordered all the towns that will be visited by the Yugoslav couple to fly the German and Yugoslav colors "and to decorate their streets and buildings for the official visitors."

Infanta Beatriz to marry a cousin

Embed from Getty Images
May 29, 1931

Infanta Beatriz is to marry her cousin, Prince Alvaro de Orleans-Borbon, according to a representative of her father, the exiled King Alfonso XIII of Spain. The princess and prince were reported to be engaged in March, but these reports were denied. The princess is 21, and Prince Alvaro, who is the son of Infante Alfonso of Spain and Princess Beatrice of Edinburgh, is a year younger. They have spent a lot of time together, and "friends call it a love match."

Don Alvaro is an airplane enthusiast like his father, and owns his own plane. Infanta Beatriz is interested in nursing and completed a nursing course in Madrid before the monarchy was abolished and the royal family left Spain.

In the past few years, Infanta Beatriz has been linked to the Prince of Wales, the Crown Prince of Italy, Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia and the Duke of Spoleto.

No date has been set for the wedding.

Princess Mary to marry Serbian king

May 21, 1921

The Chicago Daily Tribune reports today that King Alexander of Serbia will be heading to England shortly "to complete arrangements" for his marriage to Princess Mary, the only daughter of King George V and Queen Mary. The marriage, according to the report, will take place "next fall."

Württemberg duke injured

May 29, 1915

Reports in Stuttgart (via Berlin and London) state that Duke Ulrich of Württemberg "has been slightly wounded" in a battle on the eastern front.

Haakon and Maud in France

May 29, 1907

King Haakon and Queen Maud of Norway and the President and Mrs. Falliéres of France visited Versailles today. They spent the day touring the palace and "other places of historical interest. An "alarming accident marred the day," according to the New York Times.
Queen Maud, Mrs. Falliéres and Gen. Michel were in one carriage drawn by four horses. As the landau crossed the low narrow bridge over Lake Marie Antoinette leading to the Swiss village, the "horses suddenly became frightened and commenced plunging furiously."
The bridge has no rails, and one by one, the horses fell into the water, and the postillions "went with them."
General Michel was able to force open the carriage door, and "half helped and half carried the Queen and the wife of the French president out of the carriage and to the end of the short bridge." The two women were able to get to safety before the carriage fell into the water. The two women were "not hurt, although they were much agitated and nervously shaken."
The water under the bridge is not deep, and the horses were pulled out of the water. Unfortunately, one of the horses had sustained two broken legs and had to be put down.
In the evening, the Norwegian sovereigns were the guests of honor at a dinner at the Foreign Office hosted by the French president.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

No HRH for Wallis

Embed from Getty Images
May 28, 1937

It was published in the London Gazette tonight that the Duke of Windsor's future wife and children will not be entitled to the HRH.

"GEORGE THE SIXTH by the Grace of God of Great Britain Ireland and the British Dominions beyond the Seas King Defender of the Faith To all to whom these Presents shall come Greeting Whereas Her late Majesty Queen Victoria by Her Letters Patent dated the thirtieth day of January in the twenty-fourth year of Her reign did declare Her Royal Pleasure that certain members of the Royal Family being in lineal succession to the Crown namely the children of the Sovereigns of these Realms and the children of the sons of any sovereign should have the style title or attribute of Royal Highness And Whereas His late Majesty King George the Fifth by His Letters patent dated the thirtieth day of November in the eighth year of His reign did extend and amend the said Letters Patent by declaring that as well as those hereinbefore mentioned the eldest living son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales should have the style title or attribute of Royal Highness And Whereas Our Brother Edward by his Instrument of Abdication executed on the tenth day of December One thousand nine hundred and thirty six declared his irrevocable determination to renounce the Throne for himself and for his descendants and by His Majesty's Declaration of Abdication Act, 1936, effect was given to the said Instrument and by reason of the said Instrument and the said Act his issue if any and the descendants of that issue will not be in the lineal succession to the Crown Now Know Ye that We of Our especial grace certain knowledge and mere motion DO hereby declare Our Royal Will and Pleasure that our Brother Edward having been born in the lineal succession to the Crown shall notwithstanding his said Declaration and the said Act be entitled to hold and enjoy for himself only the style title or attribute of Royal Highness so however that his wife and descendants if any shall not hold the said style title or attribute."

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Buddy supports the Queen.

Buddy is very supportive of the Queen. He says I have to stop drinking French Cat wine!

More on the Queen and France

Even the august New York Times has weighed in on the alleged snub by France

a nice interview with Julia Ogilvy

Two certain young British princesses could learn from Julia Ogilvy, who is married to Princess Alexandra's son, James.

KIdney transplant for Daniel Westling

While his fiancee, Crown Princess Victoria, is on an official trip to Greenland with Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Prince Haakon, Daniel Westling underwent a kidney transplant today.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

and you wonder why we don't like the French!

Here is the perfect example. June 6, 2009 - the 65th anniversary of D-Day. Yes, the Americans were the major players in the D-Day invasion, but we were far from alone. British and Canadians also took part - and took beaches - as the Allies began their liberation of Europe.
It is one thing to exclude the Germans from the celebrations as Germany was the enemy in 1944. But to exclude the British head of state from these celebrations is in a word: rude! Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh are veterans of the second World War. Britain played a major role in the liberation of France, and France's response: a raspberry.
Shame on France. Shame on Sarkozy. Ribbit.
Update: Sarkozy now admits no invite for Queen, but tries to wiggle out of it by saying the Queen was "naturally welcome."

another view

No American brides for Salm counts

May 17, 1911

In her column in today's Chicago Daily Tribune, The Marquise de Fontenoy writes that Counts Erich and Robert zu Salm have arrived in the United States on board the Kaiserin Auguste Viktoria and are planning to spend the summer in Washington D.C., and Bar Harbor, Maine. They are actually altgraves, "Old counts," which is something between a prince and a count, and they are members of a historic mediatized family. They have an equal rank to the reigning families and rank before the non-mediatized German and Austrian nobles.

Archduchess Maria Christina of Austria is married to Hereditary Prince Emmanuel zu Salm-Salm.

Erich and Robert are both unmarried, and "each of them is an officer of a crack dragoon regiment of the Austrian army." But they are "debarred from wedding any American woman," unless they receive consent from all the adult members of their "extremely numerous and wealthy family." If either count was to fall in love and marry an American without consent, their marriage would be considered invalid, and their wives would not be able to "bear their names and titles," and their children would be barred from inheriting their "father's property, name or rank."

One American girl did marry into the Salm family. Prince Felix, who was the uncle of the present head of the house of Salm-Salm, was an active soldier during the Holstein campaign in 1849. But due to a major problem with debts, Felix was forced to resign from his commission and leave Europe. He came to the United States, where he received a commission from President Lincoln, and served with the 68th New York Regiment during the Civil War. He "emerged at the close of the conflict with the rank of brigadier general."

On August 30, 1862, at St. Patrick's Church in Washington, D.C., Felix married Anges Leclerq. The marriage was performed by Rev J.A. Walter. Miss Leclerq's sister, Delia, was married to Edmund Johnson, who was the nephew of former President Andrew Johnson.

Prince Felix and his wife went to Mexico, where he joined the "waning cause of Emperor Maximilian."

Felix was taken prisoner with the Emperor, but did not suffer his fate "had it not been for his wife, who obtained by dint of entreaty, from President Juarez a commutation of his sentence to six years' imprisonment."

Using her sister's connections, Agnes was able to induce the President to intervene on her husband's behalf. Prince Felix was eventually freed and ordered to leave Mexico. He rejoined his American wife in Europe, but their position there was a "most difficult one." The head of the house would not recognize the marriage. Felix also still had not repaid his European debts.

When the Franco-Prussian war broke out, Prince Felix joined the Prussian army. He was killed at Gravelotte in August 1870. Agnes was able to secure a small pension of $1000 from the Austrian emperor, "in recognition of her own and her husband's services to Emperor Maximilian," who was born an Austrian archduke.
Agnes' life in Europe proved difficult. She could not call herself Princess Salm as her marriage was not officially recognized by the head of the house. In 1876, she married a British diplomat, Charles Heneage, whom she had first met in Washington, D.C., before her marriage to Prince Felix.

This second marriage did not turn out "happily. The couple separated after only a few years. Heneage's final years were spent in journalism, and he died about ten years ago.

According to the Marquise, Agnes's second marriage did not appear in Burke's Peerage or in other reference works. Charles Heneage is listed as having died a bachelor. For more than a quarter of a century, the Almanach de Gotha was equally silent on Prince Felix's marriage. Her late husband's family also denied her an annuity from the entailed estates because they did not recognize her as Felix's wife.

Thus, Counts Erich and Robert are certainly aware of the pitfalls of marrying an American girl.

If you liked this article. perhaps you can buy me a coffee   


KIng Alfonso inherits millions

May 26, 1903

King Alfonso XIII of Spain has inherited $7,500,000 from his grandfather, King Francisco. The will was opened one month ago. The king had stated that he did not want his will opened until 12 months after his death. Don Francisco de Asiz, Duke of Cadiz, married his cousin, Queen Isabel II, on October 10, 1846. On the same day, he was proclaimed King of Spain. He was the father of Alfonso XII, the present king's father. King Francisco died in France on April 16, 1902.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Thank You.

Memorial Day
by Joyce Kilmer

The bugle echoes shrill and sweet,
But not of war it sings to-day.
The road is rhythmic with the feet
Of men-at-arms who come to pray.

The roses blossom white and red
On tombs where weary soldiers lie;
Flags wave above the honored dead
And martial music cleaves the sky.

Above their wreath-strewn graves we kneel,
They kept the faith and fought the fight.
Through flying lead and crimson steel
They plunged for Freedom and the Right.

May we, their grateful children, learn
Their strength, who lie beneath this sod,
Who went through fire and death to earn
At last the accolade of God.

In shining rank on rank arrayed
They march, the legions of the Lord;
He is their Captain unafraid,
The Prince of Peace...Who brought a sword.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

The official wedding photo

Here is the official wedding photo taken at Schloss Ehrenburg following the marriage of the Hereditary Prince and Princess of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

A new interview with Prince Albert

One question: does Prince Albert spend any time these days in his principality?

The Coburg wedding

Hereditary Prince Hubertus of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and Miss Kelly Rondestvedt were united in marriage today at the Pfarrkirche St Moritz in Coburg. The Lutheran service took place in the historic church where Martin Luther preached several sermons.

It was a sunny, warm day in May -- one day before the anniversary of the birth of Queen Victoria -- when the limousine pulled up in front of the church. The bride and her father, Christian Rondestvedt, a U.S. Naval officer, stepped out and entered the church.
More than 400 guests attended the wedding. The guests included the King and Queen of Sweden (the king is the first cousin of the bridegroom's father, Prince Andreas), King Simeon and Queen Margarita of Bulgaria, Princess Marie Louise of Bulgaria, the Hereditary Prince and Princess of Wrede, Prince Manuel of Bavaria, the Duke of Bavaria, Prince and Princess Konstantin of Bulgaria, the Prince and Princess of Schaumburg-Lippe, Prince and Princess Leopold of Bavaria, Duchess Tatiana of Oldenburg, Prince Georg-Friedrich of Prussia, Princess Astrid and Prince Lorenz of Belgium, the Prince and Princess of Leiningen, Prince and Princess Karl-Emich of Leiningen, Lord and Lady Nicholas Windsor and their toddler son, Albert. According to one person who was in the crowd, Lady Nicholas is pregnant with her second child.

Following the wedding, the bride and groom -- Their Highnesses the Hereditary Prince and Princes of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha -- got into a carriage for a ride through the streets of Coburg to Schloss Ehrenburg, where they were entertained by musicians. More than 3000people lined the wedding route, and cheered the newly married couple.
A reception was held at Schloss Callenberg. The bride wore a diamond necklace that is believed to be the necklace given by Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany, to his bride, Princess Helene of Waldeck-Pyrmont in 1882. Their son, Prince Charles Edward, succeeded his uncle, Alfred, as Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. Charles Edward, who became Carl Eduard, was the bridegroom's great-grandfather.

Photos by Frank Schulz

Friday, May 22, 2009

Duke and Duchess of Westminster are grandparents

Lady Tamara van Cutsem, the eldest child of the Duke and Duchess of Westminster, gave birth to a son, Jake, on Thursday night at St Mary's Hospital, Paddington. Lady Tamara married Edward van Cutsem in November 2004 at Chester Cathedral.

Willing to bet that little Jake gets a royal godparent -- Prince William? We shall see.

Emanuele Filiberto waltzes into politics

From the Christian Science Monitor:

update on Crown Prince Kardam

Here are two articles that update the condition of Crown Prince Kardam of Bulgaria.

clearing up the mystery of the Cromer FC

Thanks to Steve Downie at the Norwich Daily Press (with a little help from me), the mystery regarding the Cromer Football Club
has been solved

Ashley & Allegra Hicks separate

Ashley Hicks and his wife, Allegra, have separated after 19 years of marriage, according to the Daily Telegraph.

Ashley is a grandson of the late Earl Mountbatten of Burma. His mother is the Lady Pamela Hicks, a first cousin of the Duke of Edinburgh. His father is the late David Hicks, the interior designer.

The couple has two daughters, Angelica and Ambrosia. An architect by training, Ashley has his own design firm, Ashley Hicks.

More on the Coburg wedding

Here is a link with photographs from the civil marriage of HH the Hereditary Prince of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and Miss Kelly Rondestvedt.,952617

Tonight is the gala dinner, which will be followed tomorrow by the Lutheran wedding at Pfarrkirche St. Moritz.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Coburg wedding

Hereditary Prince Hubertus of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and Kelly Rondestvedt were married today in a civil ceremony at Schloss Callenberg, near Coburg. The ceremony was private, and was attended by family and close friends.

Coburg's local paper, the Neue Presse, has been covering the wedding in detail.

This is the first royal wedding to be held in Coburg since June 1977, when Princess Beatrice married Prince Friedrich Ernst of Saxe-Meiningen. Princess Beatrice is Prince Andreas' younger half-sister.
On October 20, 1932, Princess Sibylla of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha married Hereditary Prince Gustaf Adolf of Sweden in a Lutheran wedding at St. Mortiz. Sibylla's youngest brother, Friedrich Josias, succeeded as head of the house in 1954, following the death of their father, Carl Eduard. (The eldest son, Johann Leopold, lost his succession rights in March 1932 when he married a divorced Baroness.) The second son, Prince Hubertus, was killed in action during the second world war.
Prince Friedrich Josias was married three times. His first wife was his first cousin, Countess Victoria zu Solms-Baruth. They were married in 1942 in Casel, and were divorced in 1946. They had one son, Andreas, who is the current head of the family, and the father of the bridegroom. On Valentine's Day in 1948, Friedrich Josias married for a second time to Denyse von Muralt. They had three children, Beatrice, Maria Claudia and Adrian. This marriage ended in divorce in 1964, and Friedrich Josias married for a third time to Kathrin Bremme.
Prince Andreas was raised in the United States as his mother remarried in 1947 to an American, Richard Whitten. The family settled in Covington, Lousiana. Prince Andreas, who was born in 1943, attended high school and college in the USA. He returned to Germany to learn about his heritage and take on the mantle of running the family business and maintain the family properties, which, at the time, included Schloss Greinberg in Austria, and property in Coburg, Scotland and in othe parts of Germany.
Prince Andreas married at Hamburg in 1971 to Carin Dabelstein. This marriage was approved by his father.
Friedrich Josias died in 1998, and Prince Andreas succeeded as head of the House of Saxe-Coburg. Although Hubertus' great-grandfather, Duke Carl Eduard, was born a British prince, the ties to the British royal family are now largely genealogical. Duke Carl Eduard was embraced National Socialism with a passion, and, this put a major blot in his copybook.
This branch of the Coburg family does maintain strong ties to the Swedish court as Prince Andreas and King Carl XVI Gustaf are first cousins. Prince Andreas is one of Princess Madeleine's godparents.
It is not a surprise that Prince Hubertus has married an American. He has lived and worked in New York City for several years, where he is employed in the financial sector. His father, who has a half-sister, Victoria, continues to maintain the ties to his American family.

Here is a link to an interview with the bride and groom:

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Carl XVI Gustaf and Silvia expected in Coburg for Hubertus wedding

King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden are expected to attend the wedding of Hereditary Prince Hubertus of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and American Kelly Rondestvedt on Saturday in Coburg.
Hubertus and Kelly will marry in a civil ceremony tomorrow (Thursday) at Schloss Callenberg. In Germany, the civil wedding is the legal marriage. The religious wedding, according to the rites of the Lutheran church, will take place on Saturday at St. Moritz Church.
The civil marriage will be private. The religious wedding will begin at noon. Following the wedding, the newly married couple will take a carriage ride to Schloss Ehrenburg for a reception. The wedding dinner will be held at Schloss Callenberg.
When Martin Luther lived in Coburg, he preached several times at the Pfarrkirche St. Moritz.

Princess Marie locked up?

May 20, 1895

The Los Angeles reports on a story that originally appeared in the Herald -- and based on reports from Denmark -- that Princess Valdemar of Denmark, "whose eccentricities have long harrassed her husband," is now in a private asylum near Vienna. The Princess' father, the Duke of Chartres, who is currently visiting the Duke and Duchess of Cumberland at their home in Gmunden, Austria, says that his daughter's health is good. Private reports, however, report that the former Princess Marie of Orleans is "suffering from nervous attacks, which are pronounced incurable."

A second baby for Princess Elizabeth

Embed from Getty Images

May 20, 1949

Is Princess Elizabeth expecting second child? According to a report in the Sydney Daily Telegraph, Princess Elizabeth and her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh expect a second child toward the end of the year.

The paper added that "palace officials will neither confirm nor deny that engagements for the Princess after August will be tentative and subject to cancelation."

The couple's first child, Prince Charles, was born on November 14, 1948.

Duke of Aosta gets medal for bravery

May 20, 1941

King Victor Emanuele of Italy today bestowed on his cousin, the Duke of Aosta, the Viceroy of Ethiopia, Italy's highest military order, the gold medal for bravery in action. The Duke recently surrendered the Alagi garrison to the British.
"I viewed with great affection and admiring pride your work as a commander and soldier," the king said in a message to the Duke. "I confer on you the Gold Medal for Military Valor."
It was reported by the New York Times that the Duke of Aosta has been taken prisoner by the British imperial forces "at the end of a siege in Northern Ethiopia."

a treasure trove of gifts to Ingrid

May 20, 1935

Princess Ingrid of Sweden has received a dazzling array of wedding gifts, according to the Associated Press. The Princess, who is the daughter of Crown Prince Gustaf Adolf and the late Princess Margaret of Connaught, will marry Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark on May 24.
She received from her grandfather, King Gustav V, a seventeenth century diamond and pearl brooch that had once belonged to Frederick the Great. The brooch had been worn by "all the queens of Prussia." Crown Prince Gustaf Adolf's gift to his daughter was a "modern platinum brooch with 238 brilliants and 444 rose diamonds."
Crown Prince Frederik has arrived in Sweden to join his fiancee for a series of lunches, dinners and gala events leading to their wedding.

Crown Princess to leave her husband

Embed from Getty Images 

 May 20, 1915

Based on dispatches from a Paris newspaper, The Daily Telegraph, is reporting that the Crown Princess of Prussia is about to separate from her husband, Crown Prince Wilhelm, and "leave Berlin for Russia."

 The former Duchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin is said to have the support of her mother, Grand Duchess Anastasia, who is the sister of Grand Duke Nicholas. The Telegraph dispatch was sent to the New York Times.

A duchy as a wedding gift

Embed from Getty Images 

 May 20, 1913

Semi-official reports in Berlin confirm that Kaiser Wilhelm II will give the Duchy of Brunswick as a wedding gift to his daughter, and future son-in-law, Prince Ernst August of Hanover. The New York Times states that the Emperor will declare Brunswick an independent duchy with Ernst August as the reigning duke and Victoria Luise as his consort.

The Federal Council of the Empire has already "completed the legal and political formalities to that end."

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

KIng Peter to abdicate

May 19, 1913

The New York Times reports that King Peter of Serbia will soon abdicate, owing to his bad health. The abdication will take place "as soon as peace with Turkey is signed."
A suitable residence for the king is now being sought, and he has prepared his son for taking over as king. King Peter's health "has largely broken down as a result of the exertions and and anxieties of the war." The king will celebrate his 69th birthday on June 29.

Czar's old nurse has died

May 19, 1913

A Marconi transatlantic wireless telegraph to the New York Times reports the death of the Nicholas II's old nurse, Miss Franklin. She was an American woman who was employed to care for Alexander III's children. She was "greatly respected" by the Tsar and other members of the Imperial Family, and her "imposing funeral" was attended by many of the Grand Dukes and Grand Duchesses. Miss Franklin "manifested the sincere affection which her august pupils held for the unpretentious and plainspoken nurse." She had first come to the Russian court on the recommendation of Queen Alexandra to her sister, Empress Marie.
It is not known if Miss Franklin, "who had attained a ripe old age," had immediate survivors.

Alexander not to abdicate

May 19, 1901

Rumors regarding the abdication of King Alexander of Serbia, the resignation of the Cabinet, and Queen Draga's banishment are all without foundation, according to a report in the New York Times The rumors are based on "recent sensational experiences" of the Serbian royal family.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Astrid and Leopold arrive in Sweden for Ingrid's wedding

May 18, 1935

The AP reports that King Leopold III and Queen Astrid have arrived in Stockholm for the forthcoming wedding of Astrid's cousin, Princess Ingrid to Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark.
The Belgian couple's arrival inaugurated a week of royal wedding events in Sweden's capital. The "drizzling rain" did not deter the festivities as they were "received with acclaim as a line of prancing horses, resplendent uniforms and gilded carriages escorted them from the railway station to the royal palace."
They "braved the rain to ride in open six horse carriages," with Life Guard escorts.
Tonight, the couple will be the guest of honor at a dinner at the royal palace. Tomorrow, Crown Prince Frederik will arrive in Stockholm and will attend a lunch in his honor given by King Leopold and Queen Astrid at the Belgian legation.

Palace denies threatening letters to Victoria Luise

Embed from Getty Images 

 May 18, 1913

Palace officials are emphatically denying reports in Berlin newspapers that Princess Victoria Luise of Prussia has been the recipient of threatening letters.

The Princess will marry Prince Ernest Augustus of Cumberland later this month.
The Los Angeles Times reports that there is no truth to this story. "So great is the love of all classes of people for the Kaiser's daughter," said one police official, that I have no doubt even the most extreme anarchist would denounce and help to punish any word or act that would give pain to Her Imperial Highness."

It is a "general belief" that Kaiser Wilhelm II's only daughter is "universally beloved." She is considered the "one person in the empire whose influence over the Kaiser is absolute, and she has exercised it for good and popular ends."

It is understood that the story about the threatening letter originated with the suicide of a young student "who declared his love for the Princess was such that he could not bear to live and see her the bride of another man." He had seen the princess only a few times from a distance, but is room was "literally papered with pictures of the Kaiser's daughter at various ages, clipped from newspapers and magazines."

Irene of Greece breaks engagement

May 18, 1929

The engagement between Princess Irene of Greece and Prince Christian of Schaumburg-Lippe has been broken. The Princess, who is the second youngest daughter of the late King Constantine I of the Hellenes, has "disavowed the engagement because she found that she would be obliged to live almost permanently in the atmosphere of German monarchist and military society at Potsdam," reports the New York Times.

Prince Christian's estate in near Potsdam.

Princess Irene is in Bucharest, Romania, where she is staying with her sister, Helen.

Irene's brother, King George II of the Hellenes, announced the engagement on October 12, 1927. At the time, the king said that his sister and Prince Christian had known each other for many years. Prince Christian is a nephew of King Christian X of Denmark.

Friday, May 15, 2009

George and Elizabeth enter Canadian waters

May 15, 1939

King George VI and Queen Elizabeth "heard the first cheers of their Canadian subjects" as the Empress of Australia arrived in Canada, two days late, according to the New York Times. The King, who was not wearing a hat, and was dressed in civilian clothes, and Queen Elizabeth stood on the deck, waving to the crowds below. They will disembark tomorrow and begin their tour of Canada and the United States.
"Thick fog and floating ice" were responsible for keeping the ship nearly motionless for several days in the Atlantic, and the welcoming reception had to be postponed twice.
The arrival was broadcast live on radio in Canada, from coast to coast.

Greek princess to visit Hollywood

Embed from Getty Images
May 15, 1935

Princess Katherine of Greece, who is traveling incognito as Miss K Constantine, left Victoria, British Columbia by boat for Seattle, en route to Los Angeles. The princess is the youngest child of the late King Constantine and Queen Sophie of the Hellenes. She is accompanied by Miss M. Bennett and Miss P. Ismay, who are acting as her chaperones, according to the Associated Press.

She hopes to see "something of the film colony at Hollywood," during her visit to Los Angeles.

German Emperor cheered in London

Embed from Getty Images

May 15, 1911

Kaiser Wilhelm II, Empress Auguste Viktoria and Princess Viktoria Luise "entered London today and were welcomed with an enthusiasm which fully demonstrated the Emperor's personal popularity with Englishmen," according to the New York Times.

The German guests will be in England for week's visit as the guests of King George V and Queen Mary. The King and Queen and other members of the Royal Family greeted the German sovereigns at Victoria Station, "and all were driven in state to Buckingham Palace."

The King, the Kaiser and the Prince of Wales occupied the first carriage, while the second carriage included Queen Mary, Empress Auguste Viktoria, Princess Viktoria Luise, and Princess Mary.

Enormous crowds "thronged the route" from Victoria Station to the palace and "cheers greeted the party throughout the drive."

The German Imperial Family arrived last night aboard the Imperial yacht at Sheerness.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Princess Altinai of Montenegro has married

Princess Altinai of Montenegro was married recently to Anton Martynov. Unfortunately, the press release has not given the date or place of the wedding or any details about the groom, apart from the news that he has received the Order of Danilo. Princess Altinai is the daughter of the Crown Prince of Montenegro.

Daily Mail "reporting"

I came to the conclusion some time ago that Daily Mail "reporters" do not know how to report the news. They prefer to sensationalize a story, rather than provide actual facts. Daily Mail "reporters" also have an unerring ability to ignore facts and eschew research. This is enforced by many of the comments that follow such stories. Take a look at a story in today's Mail regarding a possible review of security measures for some of the younger royals. (Photo editors at the Mail make sure they find the most deleterious photos to accompany their stories.)

While it is most certainly true that the several of the younger members of the Royal Family have largely not lived up to their responsibility as a member of the royal family, it is also irresponsible of the Daily Mail to get facts wrong.

This is not the first time that the Mail has gotten it wrong concerning security and the younger royals. This current article does not name the reporter. A week or so ago, Rebecca English was the byline for a story oozing with misstatements.

The Daily Mail reporter is wrong when he or she states that Zara and Peter Phillps do not have protection because their mother, Princess Anne, "considers it a waste of public money."
Bzzzz. Wrong.
Peter and Zara Phillips do not get protection because ... drum roll, please ... they are not ROYAL. They are grandchildren of the Queen, but that does not make them royal. Viscount Linley and Lady Sarah Chatto are grandchildren of a sovereign (George VI), and they do not receive protection.
Peter and Zara are the children of a princess. Ditto Lord Linley and Lady Sarah, whose mother was the late Princess Margaret. When these four were children, they were protected by their mothers' Personal Protection Officers, but only when the children were in the company of their mothers.
Beatrice and Eugenie are in a different situation. They are princesses of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. In time, they will become fully fledged members of the Royal Family, and undertake official engagements.
Each working member of the Royal Family has his or her own PPO. This includes the Queen and Prince Philip, all four of their children and their children's spouses. The four royal grandchildren (William, Henry, Beatrice and Eugenie) have PPOs as well. The Phillips children and Lady Louise Windsor and Lord Severn do not.) The other members of the royal family who have PPOs are the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, the Duke and Duchess of Kent and Princess Alexandra. None of their children have personal protection officers, and live largely private lives. Prince and Princess Michael might also have one PPO.
The Duke and Duchess of Kent and Princess Alexandra are all in their 70s now, and carry out far fewer engagements, which means their security coverage is limited and less costly than for the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, who carry out a full range of engagements. The Duchess of Kent's list of official engagements would fit on one small piece of paper. It would be a lot easier to make the cuts with the Kent branch of the family, and not take away the security for the two York princesses.
The real issue is not the cost of security, but the behavior of the two princesses. Someone -- their father -- should remind Beatrice and Eugenie of the responsibilities of their position. Rather than gallivant around the world during their gap year, the two princesses should have spent the time donating that year to help others. Oh, there will be calls - oh, they are young, let them have some fun.
Bzzz. Wrong answer. Backpacking across the world is perfectly fine for the ordinary person. But Eugenie and Beatrice are far from ordinary. They are princesses of the United Kingdom, and not princesses of the demi-monde. They need to realize that their lives are different, and they need to show, by example, that young people can be responsible. That means not leaving bars in at 4 in the morning, with your cleavage in tatters and looking rather pie-eyed, and the cameras flashing in your face, recording the tatty image for posterity.

It is not all about fun. It is about showing respect for who you are, for your country, and respect for grandma, who happens to be a much loved sovereign.

New king for Croatia

May 14, 1941

The AP reports that Diplomatic circles in Rome are certain that a member of the Italian royal family will soon be named king of Croatia. The candidates include the Duke of Spoleto, the Duke of Aosta, or even King Victor Emanuele as "ones to whom such a crown might be offered."

Swedish king in jail

May 14, 1923

There are probably a few red faces today in France after learning that French soldiers arrested King Gustav V of Sweden, and sent him to jail. The King and the Grand Duke of Baden were on a train en route to the Grand Duchess of Baden's funeral. The late Grand Duchess was the king's mother-in-law. The train traveled through Offenburg, where French soldiers ordered the king off the train, and escorted him to jail. Eventually, after a few hours, King Gustav "finally succeeded in inducing the French officer to release him and apologize." The French commander has been relieved of his job, and the matter is expected to be resolved through "diplomatic apologies."

Down goes the Kaiser's banner

Embed from Getty Images

May 14, 1915

The AP reports that the banners of Order of Garter for Kaiser Wilhelm II and Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria were removed today from St. George's Chapel. The chapel was closed for the removals. The banners for the King of Württemberg, the Grand Duke of Hesse and By Rhine, the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Prince Henry of Hesse, and the Duke of Cumberland were also removed.

Yesterday, these German sovereigns and princes were stricken from the list of members of the Order of Garter.
The removals, according to the AP, were "without ceremony."

Twins for the Hesses

May 14, 1901

Princess Friedrich Karl of Hesse gave birth to twin sons this morning, according to the New York Times. This is the second set of twin sons for the Princess and her husband.

The former Princess Margarete of Prussia, who is the youngest sister of Kaiser Wilhelm II, was married in 1893 to Prince Friedrich Karl of Hesse.

The couple have already four sons, Friedrich (1893), Maximilian (1895) and twins Philipp and Wolfgang (1896). Prince Friedrich Karl is an officer in the Prussian army, and his wife "is a great favorite among all classes, and is said to be exceptionally accomplished."

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Princess Xenia gets a suspended sentence

Embed from Getty Images 
 May 13, 1929

The New York Times reports today that Princess Xenia of Russia, who is married to William B. Leeds, Jr., received a suspended sentence "for violation of a parking ordinance to which she had pleaded guilty."

Justice Jones, in administering the sentence, admonished the Princess "to watch your step." He added that he hoped that the princess would again visit Hempstead, "but not run afoul of traffic violations." She got a summons on January 24, after she had parked her car in "front of a driveway on Hempstead's principal business street."

At the time of the original summons, the Princess was about to sail for Hawaii, and she was able to have the hearing postponed until after her return. After she agreed to not "offend again," Justice Jones suspended Princess Xenia's sentence.

Queen Alexandra against suffrage

May 13, 1909

Queen Alexandra is against suffrage for women, according to a report in the New York Times. Her daughter, Princess Louise, opened the Women Nurses' Congress at Liverpool today, and gave a speech.
"I have a message for you from the Queen. She has the fullest sympathy with you in your work. She feels that this is the work which women can do. Some women nowadays try to be like men, but this is the thing that men can't do and it, therefore is here that we feel superior to anybody else."

Paul Burrell has really lost it

Memo to Paul Burrell: Shut up, unless you can get your facts straight.

You were not working for the Prince and Princess of Wales when Harry was born. The Prince of Wales was present when Diana gave birth to Harry, just as he was present when William was born. The day after Henry's birth, Charles brought William to the hospital to meet his little brother. Later in the day, Charles returned to St. Mary's Hospital, Paddington, to bring Diana and their new son home.

Charles never said that he never loved Diana. In an interview with Ingrid Seward only few weeks before her death, Diana said that she knew Charles loved her in the beginning, and she wished she could make public his love letters.

Moreover, Charles was not involved with Camilla in 1985. This was made clear by Diana in her interview, and also acknowledged by Andrew Morton, who would have gotten his information from Diana.
The adultery began -- on both sides -- in 1986.

All of this can be easily checked. Diana's Rock has gone off his Rocker far too many times now. Please shut up, Paul Burrell.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A rather sweet Prince William story

King Christian approves niece's marriage

May 12, 1937

King Christian X today officially approved the engagement of his niece, Princess Feodora, to Prince Christian of Schaumburg-Lippe.

The couple are second cousins as both are grandchildren of King Frederik VIII who died in 1912. Feodora and Christian were childhood playmates as Christian's mother, Princess Louise, would often visit her brother, Prince Harald.

Princess Feodora, 27, is the oldest daughter of Prince Harald and Princess Helena. The couple was "received and congratulated" by the king and queen at Sorgenfri Castle, just outside Copenhagen. 

According to the New York Times,  Prince Christian and Princess Feodora will  marry in the Autumn  and will live on Prince Christian's estate. Neu-Fahrland, near Potsdam, Germany.

Prince Christian was previously engaged to another cousin, Princess Irene of Greece and Denmark, although the marriage never took place.

Coronation Day

May 12, 1937

Less than five months after ascending the throne, George VI and Queen Elizabeth today were crowned in a historic ceremony at Westminster Abbey. It was a day filled with splendor and panoply.

Many eyes were on the royal box where Queen Mother Mary - the first widowed consort to attend a Coronation -- and her two granddaughters, Princess Elizabeth, 11, and Princess Margaret, 6, at. The two princesses "dressed as miniature queens and behaved with a decorum, not unlike Queen Mary." Elizabeth, who is heiress presumptive to the throne, played no role in the ceremony.

During "the stately procession" up the nave, Princess Elizabeth walked on the right of her aunt, Princess Mary, the Princess Royal, "holding her hand and keeping perfect step, obviously enjoying the scene." Princess Margaret walked on the left side of the Princess Royal, "but in her excitement she walked faster and had to be drawn back gently, to keep the three of them together," reported the Chicago Daily Tribune.

Embed from Getty Images 
 In Britain, about 50,000 people in a 7,500 square mile area could watch the Coronation live on television. The broadcast of the Coronation "proved successful today, considering the experimental phase of this art."

The coverage was sponsored by the British Broadcasting Company. "Television experimenters" believe that the success of today's broadcast "proves the practicability of such broadcasts except for the expenses involved."

The cost of transmitting the coronation on television was expensive as there are very few wireless broadcast areas and it costs $5000 per mile to install cables and relay programming.

Embed from Getty Images

The Duke of Windsor, who would have been crowned today as Edward VIII had he not abdicated for the woman he loved in December, did not watch the Coronation scenes. He woke up late and "lounged around until lunchtime." In the afternoon, he played a round of golf with friends at the Chateau de Candé in Monts, France, where he is staying with Mrs. Simpson. He did listen "carefully," to his brother's radio speech tonight.

Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images 


A full list of foreign royal guests was released by United Press and other news organizations: Prince and Princess Chichibou of Japan, the Count of Flanders, the Crown Princess of the Netherlands and Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands, the Crown Prince and Princess of Norway, the Crown Prince and Princess of Sweden, the Crown Prince and Princess of Denmark, the Prince Regent and Princess Olga of Yugoslavia, the Crown Prince of Romania, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Prince Kirill of Bulgaria, the Crown Prince of Greece, Prince Mohammed of Egypt, Prince Hussein of Yemen, Prince Wali Khan of Afghanistan, Prince Chula Chakrabonge of Siam and Prince Felix of Luxembourg.

Countess Lonyay brings suit against father

May 12, 1903

The Countess Lonyay, the former Princess Stephanie of Belgium, has filed suit against her father, King Leopold II of the Belgians, according to the New York Times.

The Countess claims that she has not received her fair share of her late mother's estate. She believes she should have received $3,400,000 instead of the $120,000 offered by King Leopold.

The countess is the second daughter of King Leopold and Queen Marie-Henriette. In 1881, she married the heir to the Austrian throne, Crown Prince Rudolf, who killed himself and his mistress at Mayerling only seven years later. In 1900, Stephanie married Hungarian Count Elemer Lonyay.

This marriage did not have her father's approval, and since then, his relationship with his daughter has deteriorated. After Marie Henriette's death, King Leopold ordered Stephanie to leave Spa, "where she had gone to mourn at the bier of her mother." She left Belgium "amid demonstrations of sympathy from the people."

Another reason to not use Wikipedia

Everyone who knows me knows I have an allergic reaction to Wikipedia, an online "encyclopedia", where anyone who isn't anyone can add or enhance an entry. Unfortunately, this system is rife for abuse and intentional false information. As more and more news organizations cut or get rid of their research centers and libraries, journalists are forced to rely on themselves for research. I worked as a news librarian for more than 20 years, and I know that there are many good journalists who are also excellents researchers. This is especially true of investigative reporters. But far too many "good" journalists are not following the maxxim: verify, verify, verify. Far too many are assuming that the information they find on the internet in general, and Wikipedia, in particular, is always accurate.

This is not to diminish the internet's value as an important and major reference tool. I use it every day in my job as a librarian, but I also use databases, and ... gasp, REAL BOOKS!

Monday, May 11, 2009

New photos of the Danish Royal Family

To commemorate the upcoming 5th wedding anniversary of the Crown Prince and Princess of Denmark, new photos have been released

Friday, May 8, 2009

Princess Stephanie - Kitsch of the Day?

From today's New York Times:

Crown Prince Olav receives honorary degree

May 8, 1939

The Chicago Daily Tribune reports today that Crown Prince Olav of Norway received an honorary degree of doctor of laws from St. Olaf College, a Lutheran school. St Olaf is located in Northfield, Minnesota.
Afterward, the Crown Prince traveled to Rochester, Minnesota, where he toured the Mayo Clinic. Tonight, the Crown Prince and his wife, Crown Princess Martha, will board a train for Kansas City. On Sunday, the couple will arrive in Los Angeles for three days. They are in the United States for eight weeks.

A new princess for Denmark

May 8, 1935

King Christian X of Denmark became a grandfather for the first time today when Princess Caroline Mathilde, who is married to the king's younger son, Prince Knud, gave birth to a daughter. The New York Times reports that the baby's arrival "was greeted with a cannon salute and the flying of flags."

Prince Knud and Princess Caroline Mathilde, who is the daughter of Prince Harald of Denmark, were married in 1933.

The little princess cannot succeed to the throne, as Denmark's succession is based on Salic law - males only. The princess' name will not be known until her baptism.

Duke of Westminster files for divorce

May 8, 1913

One of Britain's wealthiest men, the Duke of Westminster filed for divorce today, reports the New York Times. Rumors of marital problems have been the talk of London society for some time. The Duke has charged his wife with adultery, and has named the Duke of Alba as the co-respondent. The Duchess plans to file a counter suit.

The couple were married in 1901. They have two daughters, Lady Ursula, 11, and Lady Mary Grosvenor, who is three.

The Duchess is the sister of the Princess of Pless and George Cornwallis-West, the second husband of the American-born Jennie Jerome, whose first husband was Lord Randolph Churchill.

Several years ago, the Duke of Alba, who is unmarried, was rumored to be engaged to an American girl, Mathilde Townsend of Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia.

Duchess of Aosta very ill

May 8, 1909

The Duchess of Aosta's health is in "a serious state," according to the New York Times. She is no longer able to "bear the fatigue of an automobile trip from Naples to Baia, perhaps a three-quarter-hour drive."

At the recent luncheon for the British king and queen, the duchess fainted, "and it was some time before she was able to move." She is now at Castellare, where she is being cared for by her sister, the Duchess of Guise.

The Duchess of Aosta has been the primary opposition to her brother-in-law, the Duke of the Abruzzi's romance, with the American woman, Katherine Elkins. The Duchess is an "aristocrat to her finger tips and doesn't believe in any intermarriage of the 'classes.'" She believes that the marriage "would not work for the happiness of either party."

"American freedom would not have work among us," the Duchess of Aosta is reported to have said.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Little Danish prince goes home

Prince Joachim and Princess Marie of Denmark brought their newborn son home day. The little prince, who weighed 6lbs 11 ozs, at birth, slept through his first press conference. Princess Marie, who is still learning the Danish language, told reporters that her son will grow up bi-lingual, as Marie's native language is French.
The family will spend some time at their apartment in the Amalienborg Palace before returning to their primary residence, Schackenborg, in the Danish countryside.

Financial difficulties today for Grand Duke Michael

May 7, 1917

Grand Duke Michael Mikhailovich of Russia has been "hard hit" by the Russian revolution, according to Chicago Daily Tribune columnist, the Marquise de Fontenoy. The Grand Duke and his morganatic wife, Countess Sophie de Merenberg, and their three children have considered England their home, although they spend a part of each year in Cannes. 

 In 1909, the Grand Duke, who was at one time, one of the wealthiest of the Grand Dukes, took out a 99-year lease on Kenwood House from Lord Mansfield. He undertook "a series of extensive and costly alterations" as he turned Kenwood House into his principal residence. Michael and his entire family became "deeply attached to the house," but "financial stress" has "compelled him to now offer it for rent, fully furnished."

Most of Michael's property is in Russia, and since the change of government, he is no longer receiving his appanage or income from his estates. He and his wife, "a woman of extravagant taste, are now suffering embarrassment."

The  Romanovs who reside in England are no longer feeling welcome, and are "looked upon now as a source of embarrassment and as calculated to alienate the new Russian government."

Queen Elena expecting number 4

May 7, 1905

It was announced today that Queen Elena of Italy is pregnant with her fourth child. The baby is expected "soon," according to the New York Times. The former Princess Elena of Montenegro and King Victor Emanuele were married in 1896. They have three children: Princess Yolanda (1901), Princess Mafalda (1902) and the heir apparent, Prince Umberto, the Prince of Piedmont, who was born in September 1904.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

A wonderful video

On this morning's Today show, Ann Curry interview Paddy Havorsen, who is the Prince of Wales' Communications Secretary. His appearance highlighted the Prince of Wales' fight to preserve the Rain Forest.

Click on the video: priceless.

The Prince of Wales has gotten a lot of criticism over the years, especially because of his failed marriage. His critics, especially the nutty Dianamanics, have tended to overlook all the positive work he has done. The Prince of Wales' Trust has done so much to help disadvantaged youth in the UK. The trust has provided more opportunities for employment for youth than any British government scheme.
His Foundation for the Built Environment is helping to rebuild several communities devastated by Hurricane Katrina.

Here is a link to his website.
It is amazing what the the Prince of Wales supports and does to help the less fortunate and the environment.
The Prince of Wales' Foundation even has an office in Washington, D.C. (888 17th Street, NW, Suite 201, Washington, D.C. 20006).

It is unlikely that the Crown Prince of Denmark or the Prince of Asturias could get the Dalai Lama to honor one of their projects. The Prince of Wales knows how to cultivate and bring together people from around the world for this Rain Forest project.

Here they come

Embed from Getty Images
 May 6, 1939

Amid great pomp and fanfare, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth II sailed today from Portsmouth for official visits to Canada and the USA.

Thousands of people cheered from the quayside as the Empress of Australia "glided out to sea at 3 p.m." The ship has only thirty passengers on board for the trip across the Atlantic. This is a history-making voyage as George VI & Queen Elizabeth will be the first British sovereigns to visit North America. The tour will cover 11,000 miles of Canada and the United States.

According to the New York Times, 13-year-old Princess Elizabeth, waving a handkerchief at her parents, was seen to be wiping away tears as well. Nearly all of the Royal Family were present for the departure. Queen Mary was also seen to be crying as liner pulled away from the dock. The other royal family members who were present were the King and Queen's younger daughter, Princess Margaret, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, the Duke and Duchess of Kent, and the Princess Royal and her husband, the Earl of Harewood.

Olav and Martha in Wisconsin

May 6, 1939

The Associated Press reports today that "thousands of persons lined La Crosse streets" as the Crown Prince and Crown Princess of Norway arrived in the Wisconsin town. They arrived by train from Chicago, and spent two hours in LaCrosse before traveling on to Decorah, Iowa, where they were welcomed by Governor George A. Wilson. The royal couple are the guests of honor tonight at a dinner at the home of Norwegian vice consul Dr. Trond Sabo.

The Danes are in Washington

May 6, 1939

Crown Prince Frederik and his "chic, slender" wife, Crown Princess Ingrid arrived today in Washington, D.C., and were received informally at Union State by Secretary of State Hull and his wife, according to the Associated Press.
They met with reporters before taking tea at the White House, which was followed by a official dinner at the Danish legation. Crown Prince Frederik commented that during their thirty day tour of the USA, they never had a flat tire or "had to wait for a train."
He added that there was "no time to have fun" during the official visit, but he thought "America, Washington and the tour were marvelous."
In the afternoon, the couple traveled to Mount Vernon, where they laid a wreath on George Washington's tomb. Before leaving Philadelphia this morning, the couple were driven to South Philadelphia to visit the Swedish-American Historical Museum. Crown Princess Ingrid is the only daughter of Crown Prince Gustaf Adolf of Sweden.

No wedding date yet for Mrs. Simpson

May 6, 1937

Mrs. Simpson spent the day trying on wedding gowns, although no date has been set for her wedding with the Duke of Windsor. He spent today, according to the New York Times, playing golf.
One thing is certain: the wedding will not take place on Coronation Day or the day after. The Duke of Windsor's brother, George VI, will be crowned at Westminster Abbey on May 11th, the date that had been set for the former Edward VIII's coronation.
While on the golf course, the duke had a "tussle" with an American photographer, who was hiding in the bushes. The photographer was ejected before he could take any photos.
In order to give the Duke of Windsor and Mrs. Simpson more privacy, their hosts, Mrs. and Mrs. Charles Bedaux have left the Chateau de Cande for Paris. It now seems probable that there will be a civil ceremony only, and not a religious wedding as well.

Helen quits Romania

May 6, 1931

Queen Helen has left Romania. Her departure followed an announcement made today after King Carol II met yesterday with his brother-in-law, King Alexander of Yugoslavia. The meeting took place on the latter's yacht on the Danube. She left "quietly" by train, "attached to the Belgrade express," for Yugoslavia, according to the New York Times. She was accompanied by one lady-in-waiting.
King Carol II has wanted his former wife to leave the country for some time. "Strenuous efforts" were made to force Helen out, but she would not leave while her young son, Crown Prince Michael, was ill. There were also rumors that the king wanted to make a morganatic marriage with Elena Lupescu, but these rumors have been denied.
There were hopes that Carol and Helen would reconcile, but she remained "obdurate," and would not agree.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Wot! No burgers at the White House

I bet the Secret Service loved this! Not! Hey, Joe, let's go out for lunch ... or words to that effect today as President Obama and Vice President Biden, who meet at the White House for lunchonce a week, decided to head out of the Big House and drive over to Arlington to Ray's Hell Burgers. Of course, the ride included one rather large motorcade, the Secret Service, and the White House press contingent. The POTUS refused to accept a free meal, as he and the VPOTUS chowed down burgers and tater tots, sitting on stools around a high table. POTUS also paid for several of the reporters' meals, and the reporters decided to make a donation in kind to a local charity.

The liner Empress of Australia has arrived in Portsmouth

May 5, 1939

The P & O liner the Empress of Australia has arrived in Portsmouth, "spick and span," and is ready to take the King and Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland to the United States. This will be the first visit to the United States by a reigning British Sovereign. This will be a state visit. King George VI and Queen Elizabeth will also visit Canada. Tonight, at Buckingham Palace, the king and queen gave a farewell dinner in their private apartment. The guests included Queen Mary, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester and the Duke and Duchess of Kent. Princess Elizabeth was allowed to stay up late to see her grandmother and aunts and uncles.
Earlier in the day, the King named the five Counselors of State, who "can act in his absence." According to the Regency Act of 1937, Queen Elizabeth, "who must be appointed as royal consort," and the next four, who are in line to throne. The act excludes minors. The other Counselors of State are the Duke of Gloucester, the Duke of Kent, the Princess Royal and Princess Arthur of Connaught.
The Times reports that the plans for the visit to the United States are not complete, although the king and queen will meet with President Roosevelt. But as the Times reporter notes: "the American people will lose no opportunity of establishing their reputation as one of the most hospitable nations in the world."
The king and queen will arrive in Quebec City on May 15, and will tour the Dominion of Canada for several weeks before entering the United States in early June.

Frederik and Ingrid see the sights in Philly

May 5, 1939

Crown Prince Frederik IX and Crown Princess Ingrid are in Philadelphia today, where they given a tour of the city's sights, including Independence Hall. The Crown Prince, according to the New York Times, noted: "Oh, yes; we saw all this at the World's Fair." The Pennsylvania Pavilion at the New York World's Fair included a replica of Independence Hall."
During their visit to Philadelphia, they were guests at a tea and dinner, and the obligatory press interview. En route to Philadelphia, the Danish Royal Couple stopped for a three-hour visit to Perth Amboy, where they were greeted by several thousand cheering people.They were welcomed to the city by the mayor, the City Council and Governor Moore.
Tomorrow the Danish couple will depart for Washington, D.C.

Olav and Martha are in Chicago

May 5, 1939

Crown Prince Olav and Crown Princess Martha of Norway attended a formal banquet at the Loop hotel tonight, according to the Chicago Daily Tribune. About 1500 guests were invited to the dinner, which was the Norwegian couple's final event during their three-day visit to Chicago. They leave Chicago tomorrow for La Cross, Wisconsin, and Decorah, Iowa. They will also visit the Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam and Los Angeles.

Earlier today, the royal couple "traveled the length and breath of Chicago," as their limousine blared "in an out of traffic. They visited the University of Chicago, "whisked by Northwestern university, shook hands with dozens of Norwegian-Americans and smiled graciously to thousands of patient people who stood for hours to greet them."

The Crown Princess spent some time with children at the Lutheran Home Finding Society and Evanston Cradle. Crown Prince Olav had lunch "of beer and steak" at the Saddle and Sirloin Club as the guest of Thomas E. Wilson. He also had a chance to drive Mr. Wilson's six horse train.

At one point, however, the Crown Princess slipped away from her official duties. Accompanied by her lady-in-waiting, Crown Princess Martha left the Blackmore hotel. They removed the official flags off the official car and got in. The princess unpinned her corsage "and laid back her cape of silver fox. She ordered the driver to drive "to a department store. "And quickly. I want to buy some slippers And I want to be alone."

For a few minutes, the princess got her wish. Afterward, she rejoined her husband.

The gala dinner was held at the Banquet House, where Martha was "gowned sumptuously and wearing a jeweled tiara, and Olav continued to appear "tireless and appreciative."
The Crown Prince said that he and his wife would take back to Norway a "deep friendship for your city and your people."