Author Topic: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife  (Read 72345 times)

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Offline Marc

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Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« on: April 11, 2005, 07:01:06 PM »

Offline Marc

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2005, 07:02:23 PM »
The last German ''Empress'',Princess Hermine von Reuss zu Greiz from schloss Doorn!

Offline Marc

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2005, 08:49:34 AM »

Offline Marc

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2005, 08:50:17 AM »

Offline Marc

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #4 on: October 05, 2005, 08:51:11 AM »

Offline crazy_wing

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #5 on: October 05, 2005, 05:50:33 PM »
Those portraits are great buy look funny.  Doesn't really resemble her in photos.

Offline Marc

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #6 on: October 06, 2005, 04:52:46 AM »
Yes,I agree with you Crazy!  ;)

Offline HerrKaiser

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2007, 07:15:58 PM »
This woman spent 20 years as a would-be empress living in exile by her own choosing. During the WWII, she seemed to live as a somewhat common German citizen, running for air raid shelters along with the rest of the Berlin population. She was a russian captive and died under their control. does anyone have insights and details of her difficult life?
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Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2007, 10:17:29 PM »
Here's a little of what I know:

Since Wilhelm couldn't visit Germany or meddle in politics, whenever he wanted to do anything that involved these things, he would send Hermine as his emissary.

She visited Anna Anderson who commented on the match, saying it was a 'scandal' amongst Germany society that he'd married her. She added that CPss Cecile never went to Doorn and, in fact, refused to step foot in Doorn as long as 'that woman' was there and that if Cecile visited, Hermine had to leave--which isn't true, there are photos of Cecile and Hermine together at Doorn, posed formally and informally. She further added that Hermine was acceptable as a Princess but not an Empress. Regardless, after Hermine's visit, the two women established a 'special friendship' and the visit was seen by the German nobility as the seal of approval by the Kaiser on AA's identity. (Ths info comes from James Blair Lovell's book on AA)

Other members of society referred to her as the Quotation Mark Empress. Hermine often travelled to Germany to visit various people. At one gathering, at the Countess von der Groeben's, in 1932 the Countess asked Hermine directly to her face that, based on Hermine's 'well-known' sympathies for the Nazi Party, was it true that Wilhelm had given money to the cause? Hermine stood there in 'embarrassed silence'. In 1933, monarchists pinned hopes on the Nazis when Hermine journeyed from Doorn to Berlin in a reputed effort to sound out Hitler on restoration.

Time magazine in 1927 wrote of her: "The present consort of Wilhelm II is a healthy, good-humored woman with an easy stride, who does not take too seriously the pompous courtesy titles sometimes proclaimed at her approach by Netherlandic butlers in the vicinity of Doom....Actually Princess Hermine is a strictly practical woman who stipulated in her marriage contract (1922) that she should be allowed every year a vacation away from the Netherlands—in Germany."

On one of her trips, to Germany, she made clear her plans to stay at the Wilhelm I palace on the Unter der Linden. The government replied that she had the right to (this was 1927) but they couldn't guarantee her safety. Nonetheless, she did indeed take up residence there, occupying four rooms of the old palace: bedroom, boudoir, sitting-room, bath. She also brought 2 of her Mercedes with her from Doorn.

From Time magazine in 1929, on the occasion of WII's 70th birthday celebrations: "As the guests trooped in to dinner they found no place card laid for "the Empress Hermine," present consort of Wilhelm II. His 70th birthday was to have been the occasion for the first general recognition of her rank by the entire House of Hohenzollern. Poor Hermine! On the night before she had been stricken with chicken pox. "

She was captured by the Russians at the end of the war and impressoned in a camp for displaced persons at Frankfurt an der Oder where she died on August 7th, 1947.

(courtesy Nuria)



She also wrote her memoirs, An empress in exile: my days in Doorn.
They also serve who only stand and wait--John Milton
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Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2007, 10:19:32 PM »

Hermine married Johann Georg in 1907 and was widowed in 1920--I think JG died of tuberculosis? They had the following children:

Hans (KIA in Russia 1943); married, had 2 children
Georg Wilhelm (d. 1927)
Hermine (b.1910); m. Hugo Herbert Hartung (died while imprisoned by 1945)
Ferdinand  (d.1973); married 3 times (to 2 women); no issue
Henriette (d. 1972); m. 1940 (div 1946) Karl Franz Josef of Prussia (only son of WII's youngest son, Joachim); they had 3 children including Prince Franz Wilhelm who married (and divorced) GDss Marie Vladimirovna (claimaint to the Russian throne) and is the father of Maria's only child, George. Franz Wilhelm also was a twin--his brother Franz Joseph died at just a couple weeks of age.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2009, 07:32:21 AM by Svetabel »
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Offline Marc

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2007, 05:07:51 AM »
Does anyone have pictures of Princess Henriette of Prussia,born Princess von Scönaich-Carolath(Hermine's daughter)?

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2007, 07:57:39 AM »
In the pictures I posted showing Hermine and Wilhelm with 2 girls, she's the younger one--always on the right side. Or are you referring to portraits?
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Offline HerrKaiser

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2007, 09:36:19 AM »
thanks GDElla! terrific information. Not much happiness and long term goodness in her life...children dying etc. When the Russians imprisoned her, was she actually in their classic, miserable prison where the death rates soared? Why did she not have some sort of privilege based on rank?
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Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2007, 12:57:16 PM »
Only one of her children predeceased her--her eldest son during WWII.

I don't know what the circumstances of her imprisonment were but, based on some stories of other royalties imprisoned by the Soviets I don't imagine it was very nice.  :(

She would probably be very pleased to know that it's her great-grandson who is the claimaint to the Romanov throne.
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Robert_Hall

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Re: Princess Hermine of Reuss the Kaiser's last wife
« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2007, 01:16:40 PM »
I read somewhere that she died basically from starvation and lack of medical care.  I do not think the Soviets gave much a fig about rank when it came to royals of any ilk. Particularly German ones, especially if her supposed pro Nazi sympathies were know.  She was probably lucky not have just been shot outright.