Wednesday, May 6, 2009

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.

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