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Topic: Sons of Kaiser Wilhelm II, & their descendants (except Louis Ferdinand's family)  (Read 137929 times)
Reply #120
« on: January 18, 2008, 01:52:12 PM »
Hastings Offline
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I still find these women so interesting even if some think their roles were insignificant. It amazes me that women who were in the forefront of the public eye could end up in complete obscurity. You would think that someone would be interested enough to detail their later lives. Cecilie and Viktoria Luise in their memoirs act as if the other girls just did not exist. Were they just not close?
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Reply #121
« on: January 18, 2008, 03:36:41 PM »
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I imagine that they would have lost contact with those whose marriages broke up (the Eitel Friedrich divorce was quite messy I think). Adalbert and his family may have got a bit cut off when they went to live in Switzerland, and Ady of course had her mental troubles; only Oskar and his wife had a stable family life within Germany after WW1. VL was certainly on good terms with Oskar and Ina Ruppin; she had been a friend of Ina from before the time of the marriage, and was largely responsible for persuading the Kaiser to agree to the union. Oskar was an unpretentious sort of man who came to concentrate on his charitable work and did not force himself into the limelight. All in all, I don't find it too surprising that the Kaiser's daughters-in-law, apart from Cecilie to some extent, should have ceased to attract much attention after the fall of the dynasty.

Some post-war pictures of Oskar, Ina and children:







Some sign of contentment there among the ruins!

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Reply #122
« on: January 18, 2008, 05:44:45 PM »
grandduchessella Offline
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Oskar and Victoria Louise seem to have had the happiest marriages--and both chose their own spouse and overcame great opposition to marry that person. Ina was often seen in Doorn in later years and seems to have had a good relationship with her father-in-law. She was rumored to have had a lovely singing voice, something that was purported to have attracted Prince Oskar. Her father, who was tremendously wealthy, served as Premier of the Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin.

The couple had 4 children:

Oskar (1915-KIA Poland 1939)

Burchard (1917-1988)

Herzeleide-Ina-Marie (1918-1989)

Wilhelm-Karl (1922-2007)
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Reply #123
« on: January 18, 2008, 06:29:33 PM »
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Thanks for the photos of Oskar and his family. I wonder whether any of the children, particularly the one who died in 2007 ever wrote any memoirs with references to Grandfather Wilhelm II?
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Reply #124
« on: January 19, 2008, 03:35:59 AM »
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I still find these women so interesting even if some think their roles were insignificant. It amazes me that women who were in the forefront of the public eye could end up in complete obscurity. You would think that someone would be interested enough to detail their later lives. Cecilie and Viktoria Luise in their memoirs act as if the other girls just did not exist. Were they just not close?

Yes, these women are interesting, especially the ones we don't know much about. For example Princess Alexandra Viktoria, spouse of August Wilhelm, a pretty woman IMO, what was her life like after her divorce with 1st husband? What was her personality? For me she is most unknown to us, as we know a lot about Cecilie, some details about Adelheid's bad health (and mental instability), sweet character of Ina, cold personality of Sophie Charlotte, and Marie Auguste's hobby to adopt "sons" and sell titles.
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Reply #125
« on: January 19, 2008, 01:02:34 PM »
grandduchessella Offline
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She had frequent conflicts with her in-laws during her marriage for behavior they considered inappropriate for a Hohenzollern princess--not unlike her aunt, Princess Friedrich Leopold. She liked modern dances such as the foxtrot and was frequently taken to task for spending too much money. She was full of high spirits and could adopt a sarcastic tone. AV had sued for divorce once before (post-revolution) naming numerous women in her decree. Under pressure, she withdrew the petition and the 2 resumed an uneasy existence together. She eventually sued again for divorce. AV gave an interview to a newspaper in 1926 upon her (and her husband's) arrival in New York. She said that she was grateful for the revolution as it gave her freedom from royalty and court restrictions. She was apparently an avid painter and this was severely repressed in the Kaiser's court. She also remarked on the 'loveless marriages' of herself, Sophie Charlotte and Marie Auguste--and even the Kaiserin--where they were all 'smothered with pomp, subject to whims of the Emperor, longing for simple life and honest affection. It was indeed a sorry little flock of unhappy women which the German revolution set loose from the Prussian castle '. Her second husband, former Naval officer Arnold Rumann, had been a friend of her father's. She and her husband set up house in Munich and while AV, for the first time, had to bake, clean and make her own clothes she was happy. She said 'I have love now' and the ability to paint and that 'you may be sure I learned the value of love and work during those bleak years' of her marriage when she 'had neither'. She said she occasionally still had dreams of the coldness of the Imperial world where their glittering existence was haunted by a 'black spectre--the Kaiser's will'. She also rejoiced that, unlike the pre-Revolution era, the Kaiser's will was not sufficient to deprive her of her son. He was, at the time, in school in Potsdam where he saw his father and spent time with his mother. She felt that she now had 'everything--a husband who loves me, a home of my own where my word is law, the right to work, and the visits of my boy. What more could a woman ask?'. Sadly, that marriage would end in divorce as well. 

After her divorce, she earned her own way, partially by trying to sell her paintings. She would later visit California and paint in Santa Barbara and San Francisco and have an exhibit in the latter of her artwork. (She painted portraits & landscapes). It was even rumored that she might become an American citizen in 1929. She also travelled to NY incognito in 1927 and exhibited some work under her married name before it was revealed she was a princess. She was also the first member of the Hohenzollern family (even though she was divorced by then) to get bobbed hair. During WW2, she moved her possessions to the home of her brother where she thought they'd be safe--which they were from aerial bombardment but not from the Soviet occupying forces. She lost even the amount of money she had in the bank. By 1950, she was in very bad straights and living in a 15 foot trailer (which she once used to travel across the US) trying to keep it heated. She would drive in it from one free parking area to another and cooked her food on a small gas burner Her easel took up one corner and she shared the rest only with her small dog. Still, she maintained the 'bohemian' flair that 'shocked her royal relatives'. This is why, she said, she enjoyed visiting America--there no one was shocked but 'here people are always shocked'. She hoped to stock away enough money to visit again and said she didn't mind being poor--she'd existed on only hot dogs (which she made herself) during one of her travels in America and she'd do it again if she had to.

AV and 2nd husband

« Last Edit: January 19, 2008, 02:54:33 PM by grandduchessella » Logged

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Reply #126
« on: January 19, 2008, 01:13:27 PM »
grandduchessella Offline
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Sophie Charlotte apparently had an affair with a Baron von Plettenberg which led to her being named as a co-respondent in the Baroness's divorce action. The 2 had apparently been youthful lovers before her marriage to Eitel Fritz and the relationship continued. After the war, when the Baroness filed for divorce, SC was actually summoned to give testimony in court. She was still given the deference not to appear in open court but allowed to give testimony in closed session. Still, the public knew of it and she was even booed and hissed at outside the court building. The Baroness alleged the relationship continued throughout her marriage and produced letters to back up her story. According to the papers, Sophie Charlotte admitted that the two had known each other intimately when he was her father's adjutant (there had been stories published at the time of her engagement that she'd had a love affair with an aide-de-camp to her father) and confessed that the 'intimate' relationship had continued after her marriage. She added further that her husband was in full knowledge of the relationship and that she only halted the affair because the Baron was transferred. An official gave testimony (which the Baroness confirmed) of a telephone call between the Princess & the baron soon after his marriage where she said that she wouldn't receive his wife but that he must come to her immediately. This he did and his wife was left hanging around the Bellevue Castle in Berlin for 4 hours while the Baron disappeared with the princess. However, this was denied by the Prince, Princess (and her lawyer) and, eventually, the Baroness. (The threat of libel hung over the heads of those involved.)  In one of her supposed letters (read aloud in court) Sophie related that she had nothing in common with Eitel Fritz but that they had much to contribute to each other and that the time would eventually come when she must leave the Baron. Not only was the story alleged at the time of SC's engagement, it was also said that she'd had to go to the Riviera for an 'illness' along the lines of Princess Marie of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. One journalist was sentenced to prison at the time for printing the stories. The scandal hit like a bomb in 1922 when the divorce action was undertaken since monarchists still hoped for a restoration of the Hohenzollerns. Still, it was a few years before EF & SC divorced with the New York Times reporting that EF was suing for divorce on the grounds that Sophie Charlotte's "continual efforts to become a movie star have been humiliating to others of noble birth and that her frequenting of movie studios has caused unpleasant remarks reflecting on the standing of the entire Hohenzollern family." . She later did some work as a wallpaper designer. Her second husband, Harald von Hedemann, was a police captain.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2008, 08:30:51 PM by grandduchessella » Logged

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Reply #127
« on: January 19, 2008, 02:50:42 PM »
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grandduchessella, thanks sooo much for info on Alexandra Viktoria!!! She really looks like an interesting character.
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Reply #128
« on: January 19, 2008, 03:06:24 PM »
grandduchessella Offline
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You're welcome, Svetabel. She really does seem interesting. I'm not surprised that there isn't much of her (or Sophie or Marie) in either Cecile's or Victoria Louise's books. I think once you left the family (especially in scandalous circumstances) that was it.

Here is her gravesite (courtesy of mardam's site) at the Louisenlund Familienfriedhof:



She's buried near her parents and brother. Note how her grave only notes her as a Princess of Schleswig-Holstein--if you didn't know, you'd think she never married. BTW, this is also where Sandra Coburg's daughter Marie Melita is buried as she married AV's brother.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2008, 03:09:21 PM by grandduchessella » Logged

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Reply #129
« on: January 19, 2008, 03:12:04 PM »
grandduchessella Offline
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Though HerrKaiser might disagree, AV was often mentioned as the loveliest of the Kaiser's daughters-in-law.

« Last Edit: June 05, 2009, 01:48:08 AM by Svetabel » Logged

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Reply #130
« on: January 20, 2008, 03:11:42 AM »
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Thank you grandduchessella for all that interesting information.

It is striking that none of the Kaiser's children married anyone other than a German. Any foreign princess might have thought twice about marrying into the Hohenzollern family, especially in view of the nationalitic atmosphere in Germany and the unhappy experiences of the Empress Frederick; but that was not really the reason, it was simply that the Hohenzollerns were not cosmoplitan in outlook and never looked outside the country. And Viktoria Luise, who might have made a grand marriage, happened to fall in love with Ernst August. He was not even a proper King or Grand Duke, but gained a sort of grace-and-favour Dukedom in return for his family's final submission to the apparently all-dominant Hohenzollerns (in 1913!). This goes far to explain why all of these people fell into relative obscurity. The entire monarchical system in Germany collapsed into a heap together, and outside Germany the Hohenzollerns were generally seen as nothing more than symbols of German militarism, while the lesser German royal familes were simply viewed as having been junior partners in the enterprise. The Kaiser in particular was of course vilified in war-time propaganda, but there is no doubt that he and the Hohenzollerns were central to the nationalistic and militaristic current that had been so dominant in Germany since unification. VL continued to attract some interest in Germany but hardly any outside the country; here in Britain, only people who take a special interest in historical or royal affairs will even have heard of her.

None of the Kaiser's daughters-in-law were especially beautiful apart from Cecilie. Ina von Ruppin was pretty and seems to have been an exceptionally attractive personality; AV was certainly good-looking and stylish, and played up well to the camera. One gets the impression that she enjoyed the position that she gained by marrying into the ruling family, and the extravagances that this enabled her to indulge in. The marriage was not of course satisfactory as a personal level, and she was happy to escape from it when there was no further advantage to be gained; but I suspect that we should be wary of accepting her post-war complaints about her previous situation entirely at face value. Here are some photographs of her:







« Last Edit: January 20, 2008, 03:13:52 AM by Adagietto » Logged
Reply #131
« on: January 20, 2008, 10:17:27 AM »
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 Ina von Ruppin was pretty and seems to have been an exceptionally attractive personality; AV was certainly good-looking and stylish, and played up well to the camera. One gets the impression that she enjoyed the position that she gained by marrying into the ruling family, and the extravagances that this enabled her to indulge in. The marriage was not of course satisfactory as a personal level, and she was happy to escape from it when there was no further advantage to be gained; but I suspect that we should be wary of accepting her post-war complaints about her previous situation entirely at face value.


Yes, I agree and can repeat that AV was indeed pretty and photogenic (I'd say she was the prettiest among her own sisters) and often looked radiant in her photos. Her marriage was not happy but it's interesting that August Wilhelm (1st husband) always seems quite happy and content in their photos together while Alexandra Victoria often looks sad and a sort of "OMG, is it really me here with this man? why me?" near him.

By the way August Wilhelm also liked to paint as well as his spouse.
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Reply #132
« on: January 20, 2008, 10:28:50 AM »
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Sophie Charlotte apparently had an affair with a Baron von Plettenberg which led to her being named as a co-respondent in the Baroness's divorce action. The 2 had apparently been youthful lovers before her marriage to Eitel Fritz and the relationship continued. After the war, when the Baroness filed for divorce, SC was actually summoned to give testimony in court. She was still given the deference not to appear in open court but allowed to give testimony in closed session. Still, the public knew of it and she was even booed and hissed at outside the court building. The Baroness alleged the relationship continued throughout her marriage and produced letters to back up her story. According to the papers, Sophie Charlotte admitted that the two had known each other intimately when he was her father's adjutant (there had been stories published at the time of her engagement that she'd had a love affair with an aide-de-camp to her father) and confessed that the 'intimate' relationship had continued after her marriage. She added further that her husband was in full knowledge of the relationship and that she only halted the affair because the Baron was transferred. An official gave testimony (which the Baroness confirmed) of a telephone call between the Princess & the baron soon after his marriage where she said that she wouldn't receive his wife but that he must come to her immediately. This he did and his wife was left hanging around the Bellevue Castle in Berlin for 4 hours while the Baron disappeared with the princess. However, this was denied by the Prince, Princess (and her lawyer) and, eventually, the Baroness. (The threat of libel hung over the heads of those involved.)  In one of her supposed letters (read aloud in court) Sophie related that she had nothing in common with Eitel Fritz but that they had much to contribute to each other and that the time would eventually come when she must leave the Baron. Not only was the story alleged at the time of SC's engagement, it was also said that she'd had to go to the Riviera for an 'illness' along the lines of Princess Marie of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. One journalist was sentenced to prison at the time for printing the stories. The scandal hit like a bomb in 1922 when the divorce action was undertaken since monarchists still hoped for a restoration of the Hohenzollerns. Still, it was a few years before EF & SC divorced with the New York Times reporting that EF was suing for divorce on the grounds that Sophie Charlotte's "continual efforts to become a movie star have been humiliating to others of noble birth and that her frequenting of movie studios has caused unpleasant remarks reflecting on the standing of the entire Hohenzollern family." . She later did some work as a wallpaper designer. Her second husband, Harald von Hedemann, was a police captain.

Hmm, for some reason I considered Sophie Charlotte a bleak and cold woman, a long-suffering wife of a supposedly homosexual Prince Eitel Friedrich...but now I see she was quite a character! Seeing at her photos I keep in mind the words of Princess Friedrich Leopold (Luise Sophie) who said that "Lotta had that Prussian military spirit".

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Reply #133
« on: January 20, 2008, 10:17:29 PM »
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I think an important factor in the choice of spouses was that they all needed to be Protestant or willing to convert to be Lutheran. That ruled out all the Roman Catholic Royal Houses as they are rarely if ever prepared to convert. Bang goes the idea of a Habsburg, Wittelsbach, Wettin in Saxony, Bourbon or Braganza. Look at the fiasco over Helene, daughter of the Count of Paris when Albert Edward Duke of Clarence and Avondale was interested in her. The Hohenzollerns were also paranoid about equal rank. They would have never allowed Princess Victoria Mary of Teck, later Queen Mary, to marry into their family or a Battenberg. There were also not many British Princesses available at the time for the Kaiser's sons. The Danes would have never married into the Hohenzollerns due to the Schleswig-Holstein fiasco and the Swedes were disinclined. Their important daughter was older and had married the future Frederik VIII of Denmark. It all makes sense that a Protestant Princess from one of the reigning royal houses in the German Empire would marry into the Hohenzollerns. A docile bride was the desired choice. The Hohenzollerns hadn't taken kindly to an intelligent import from Britain and of course the Kaiserin, commonly known as Dona in the family and labelled as the Holstein cow by Bismarck was hardly known for her intellectual prowess. A marriage to a Hohenzollern Prince was an upward step in the German hierarchy for a minor German Princess. A Russian Grand Duchess didn't happen until after the collapse of the monarchy although a Hohenzollern had married Nicholas I of Russia in the nineteenth century and become Empress.   
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Reply #134
« on: January 21, 2008, 01:34:53 AM »
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 wasn't Pr Adalbert briefly engaged to Pss Dagma of Denmark? and I believe Eitel Fried. was refused by  Alice of Albany.
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