Wednesday, February 11, 2015

An American Queen for Hungary?

February 11, 1920

Hungary may have an American Queen, according to an exclusive dispatch to the Los Angeles Times.

Count Laszlo Szechenyi, who is married to Gladys Vanderbilt, may become King or regent of Hungary, according to the "embryonic plans of the present Apponyi government."

Hungary must "become" a monarchy, but the Entente powers will not allow a Habsburg restoration. Archduke Josef is said to be the "popular choice in certain circles," but others are favoring one of the Teck princes or Prince Arthur of Connaught, all of whom are Englishmen, to sit on Hungary's throne.

But "radical, far-seeing members of the government," have suggested Count Szechenyi, a member of the Hungarian nobility.   He has been selected because he is married to the daughter of an American millionaire.

The Hungarians are convinced that an American Queen sitting on the Budapest throne would "surely enlist American sympathies, " and would help Hungary gain much needed "social, material and financial reconstruction."

The Hungarian Chamber of Deputies will meet in Budapest on February 16.  Count Apponyi will be elected as a curator, and he plans to "submit a motion" to restore the monarchy.  Several candidates' names will be offered, but a "judicious propaganda" will result in Count Szechenyi's appointment as the new king of Hungary.

Gladys Moore Vanderbilt, daughter of Cornelius Vanderbilt II and his wife, Alice, married Count Szechenyi on January 27, 1908, in New York City.  They have four daughters, Cornelia, Alice, Gladys, and Sylvia.

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