– Another installment in my series
Stories of the world during the time Winston Churchill lived in it: 1873 to 1965.
John Winston, the 7th. Duke, set out to restore the Churchill situation. He was a serious man, and a deeply religious one. Sales of some of the palace treasures stabilized the Marlborough finances. He became active in Parliament. In a religious era, he made the religious state of the realm his priority issue. He became Lord President of the Council and a cabinet member in Lord Derby’s Third Administration. In 1868 Disraeli asked him to lead the Conservatives in the House of Lords.
The Churchill family was again a solid, established member of Europe’s nobility. They were normal. They were respectable. And John Winston intended to keep it that way. The family’s future depended upon solid conservatism both financially and socially, upon not making waves.
This is the situation in August, 1873 when Randolf bursts into the palace to announce that he has just met a most wonderful girl and he intends to marry her!
The Duke is away in Scotland but the Duchess naturally asks questions. Who is she? And more importantly, does she come from a good family? Randolf supplies such answers as he can.
Extract from a letter to his Father:
Blenheim [Palace]: Wednesday, August 20, 1873
Mr. Jerome is a gentleman who is obliged to live in New York to look after his business. I do not know what it is. He is reputed to be very well off, and his daughters, I believe, have very good fortunes, but I do not know anything for certain. He generally comes over for three of four months every year. Mrs. Jerome has lived in Paris for several years and has educated her daughters there. They go out in Society there and are very well known.
I have told you all I know about them at present. . . . .
Ever your most affectionate son,
The Duke and Duchess are increasingly concerned. Then Randolf supplies Jennie’s picture. Shock!
Who is this American with the dark skin and the mysterious past? They will make inquiries! They will find out!
Other Installments of this series (in progress).