Trivia Thursday: The Queens’ Vault

This Week’s Question:

Arbella Stuart, who was once considered a successor to Queen Elizabeth I, was buried in the vault of what other famous queen?

Last Week’s Question:

Who was the first heir to the British throne to tour North America?

Answer: Edward, Prince of Wales, later Edward VII. The charismatic eldest son of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert set off for a tour of Canada and the United States in summer 1860, when he was 18 years old. His mother was almost violently opposed—especially to the idea of him visiting the States, but her advisors and Prince Albert wore her down and convinced her it would be great PR. Edward set out on 10 July, toured Canada, and crossed into the United States on 20 September.

Edward was a runaway success. 50,000 people cheered him through the streets of Chicago, and he was feted at the White House and treated to a 6,000-man parade of firefighters in New York City. While in New York, the prince attended a ball with some 3,000 invited guests. Another 2,000 people somehow managed to gatecrash and collapsed the dance floor. Luckily, nobody was hurt.

Southern politicians trying to bolster the case for slavery tried to get him to tour some model plantations, but he refused, instead confining his time in the south to a church service and tour in Richmond, Virginia.

Edward hopped up the Atlantic seaboard, meeting Ralph Waldo Emerson, Oliver Wendell Holmes, and Henry Wordsworth Longfellow before boarding a ship in Portland, Maine for the trip home. He celebrated his 19th birthday on the return journey and reached England just a few days later, on 15th November. And even his mother had to agree that he’d managed to do something right this time.



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