Author Topic: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants  (Read 271446 times)

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Offline Eddie_uk

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #240 on: July 31, 2006, 03:37:24 PM »
Well Vicky was not in such a precarious situation as Alix and Irene found themselves.

Why did Irene destroy her letters in 1918??
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Robert_Hall

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #241 on: July 31, 2006, 04:10:45 PM »
The fall of the monarchy and being married to the Kaiser's brother might have had something to do with it.

Eric_Lowe

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #242 on: July 31, 2006, 08:44:22 PM »
I don't think so...those are private family letters. More likely she thought they are too private for others to see (like Princess Beatrice did with her mother's letters).  ???

Robert_Hall

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #243 on: July 31, 2006, 09:02:07 PM »
What do you think they would contain ?  Events of the day, political events and opinions,  personal movements such as finances, relatives on opposing sides, etc ?
 Certainly no reason to destroy births & deaths, but directions to escape from harm, military postings, observations of personalities.
 All the good stuff- of course it went into the flames.

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #244 on: July 31, 2006, 10:30:08 PM »
Yes, but maybe she just didn't like the idea of perfect strangers (and revolutionaries to boot) pawing through her most intimate letters. By the time of the German Revolution, news had filtered out about the presumed fate of the Russian Imperial Family--who knows what went through Irene's mind at the time? It is a great loss though, no doubt.  :(
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Robert_Hall

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #245 on: July 31, 2006, 11:18:51 PM »
That was my point GDElla,  of course all these topics were extremely private.  They could also be equally extremely compromising. Considering the dangers of the times, especially as there was a very real threat of a communist/socialist takeover in  Germany, it is quite understanable to destroy all this stuff. Sometimes even innocuous messages as simple weddings, births, etc could conatin more than the mere social foramilties. We shall never know.
 What amazes me, at times, is the amount of private papers that HAVE survived.  Family archives that are  only rarely opened [witness Royals & the Reich]

Eric_Lowe

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #246 on: August 01, 2006, 02:47:52 AM »
I have to disagree with you on this. Military postings ? Irene is no Mata Hari or Laura Croft. She is just a wife and mother who is concerned with her family. Certainly it might contain her opinions on certain people. But so did her mother-in-laws ! The fact that the correspondence of her more intrigue driven sister-in-law, Charlotte of Saxe-Meiningen did survive (told to me by John Rohl) the war is a clear indication. Also the Duchess of Coburg (Marie of Russia)'s letters also survived sort of indicated that it was more Princess Irene's personal choice to destroy her letters than pressure from political considerations.  :P

Offline Eddie_uk

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #247 on: August 01, 2006, 03:09:01 AM »
Helen, would it be possible for you to tell us a a bit more about these postcards? content etc? Thank you hon :)
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Robert_Hall

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #248 on: August 01, 2006, 09:00:22 AM »
By military postings I meant which members of the family were where at what time. That would be normal for anyone with a military family. Her letters would most likely not have been subjected to censorship, like  ordinary citizens, so such information could concievably be construed as "passing military information".

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #249 on: August 01, 2006, 10:32:04 AM »
Well, Henry was in command of the German Navy, wasn't he? Anything he wrote to Irene, even something seemingly innocuous, could've been used in any potential trial for war crimes. Who knows? I would be a bit paranoid after seeing what happened to my relations in Russia--plus the fact that reports said their car was fired upon as they fled Kiel, with their driver being injured. I wonder if she later regretted burning the letters after things in Germany settled and it became obvious that the German royals, except for the Kaiser, were in no danger?
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Robert_Hall

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #250 on: August 01, 2006, 10:37:01 AM »
Exactly, GDElla.
It is sad for history that her letters are gone, but understandable. Someday, perhaps, her letters to others may surface in a royal archive somewhere.

Offline Eddie_uk

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #251 on: August 01, 2006, 11:32:59 AM »
Yes, maybe when Irene was elderly and looked back on the past she probably regretted it, especially with Alixs murder and so many other relations gone. As you get older you cling to those kinds of things don't you??

There was a Faberge exhibition in London a little while back and it contained an amazing broach of Irenes. I would love to learn more about her. I will dig out Hessian Tapestry next time im home! :)
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Offline Helen

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #252 on: August 01, 2006, 02:53:14 PM »
Helen, would it be possible for you to tell us a a bit more about these postcards? content etc?
The copyright on Irène's postcards to Alix belong to GARF and I have not been granted permission to quote from them, so all I can give is general information.

According to my count, 37 postcards covering the years of 1899-1909 have been preserved. The postcards are very much like the postcards any of us might send to relatives. They vary from pictures of characteristic buildings, monuments, and statues at places where she happened to be to a few scenic views, pictures of ships, and various family pictures.

The texts on the cards were quite innocent, I think. Several cards were sent to thank Alix for cards, letters or presents that they had received from Alix, whereas others were sent as accompaniment to presents that Prince Heinrich and Princess Irène sent Alix and Nicholas. One card was sent in November 1904 in remembrance of the death of Princess Elisabeth of Hesse in 1903. In 1905 and 1906, she sent some cards from places where she was on a holiday, describing their activities. There were also some cards to tell Alix about daytrips she had made within Germany. Yes, she did write where she was and for which place she and/or Heinrich would leave the next day and she did refer to visits of submarines or seeing a particular ship once or twice, but she hardly gave any details. It all sounded quite harmless, especially considering the fact that the cards were all sent well before WWI. Of course, there is only so much text one can write on a postcard. Any subject that required more than a few words would have been discussed in a proper letter now lost.  :'(
"The Correspondence of the Empress Alexandra of Russia with Ernst Ludwig and Eleonore, Grand Duke and Duchess of Hesse. 1878-1916"
"Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig and Princess Alix of Hesse and by Rhine in Italy - 1893"
"Ludwig IV, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine - Gebhard Zernin's Festschrift"

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #253 on: August 01, 2006, 04:35:59 PM »
I wonder if she sent any of her relations postcards from China? I think at one point she was the only European female royal to go there when she visited Henry when he was on a long deployment there. She was pretty well-traveled as she tried to visit him in different places when she could.

On a related note, does anyone know why there was a gap between Waldemar and Sigismund? Was it worries over his hemophilia, Henry's frequent (and long) deployments, a combination of both?

We know a good deal about how QV, Alice, Alix, Ena and, to an extent, Alice Albany, dealt with have a hemophiliac son. Is there anything really out there about how Irene dealt with it--and Henry for that matter?
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Eric_Lowe

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Re: Prince Henry (Heinrich) of Prussia, his family and descendants
« Reply #254 on: August 01, 2006, 09:22:24 PM »
They are the best !  Missy had those in her pocession and they are now in Romania. I also know that Baby Bee's letters also survived and it is that is the basis of the book about her in Spainsh still being written as we speak.