History: the American Woman Who Brought Down a King

Dr. Mozelle Martin

Wallis Simpson, pictured left in 1937, was an American divorcee who scandalized Britain and brought down a king in the 1930s.

Wallis Simpson & King EdwardToronto Star

Wallis was born in Baltimore, Maryland on June 19, 1896. Her birth name was Bessie Wallis Warfield. She was an American socialite.

Shortly after Wallis was born, her father died. She and her now widowed mother were financially supported by relatives. Wallis first married the United States Navy officer Win Spencer. In 1931, she was already married to Ernest Simpson when she later met King Edward (Prince of Wales).

In January 1934, while King Edward's girlfriend (Lady Furness) was visiting New York City, he replaced her with Wallis. When questioned about this scandal by his father, King Edward denied it even though his father had seen them having intercourse. King Edward then distanced himself from another former lover, the textile heiress Freda Dudley Ward.

Five years later, after Edward's accession as King of the U.K., the King announced his love for her, and it caused a constitutional crisis that led to Edward's abdication. Why? Because Wallis was a divorcee.

Due to Wallis having a living ex-husband, the King's desire to marry her ultimately caused him to step down from the throne. The British and Dominion governments believed that a divorced woman was politically, socially, and morally unsuitable as a partner and that she was only after Edward for his money and clout. That's when Edward was instead named the Duke of Windsor by his brother and successor, King George VI.

By the end of 1934, Edward was head over heels in love and showered Wallis with money and jewels. Wallis had already filed for divorce from her second husband, stating he had an affair with Mary Kirk, Wallis's childhood friend. The divorce was granted on October 27, 1936.

Wallis's relationship with Edward caused her to flee the country to avoid the scandal and outrun the press. For the next three months, the media chased her to the home of her close friends Herman and Katherine Rogers. As an aside, 80 years later, she admitted that Herman had been the love of her life. At her hideaway, Wallis was pressured by Lord Brownlow to renounce the King in a newspaper press release. However, Edward was determined to marry Wallis anyway and stated he refused to let her go.

The King then signed the Instrument of Abdication on December 10, 1936.

Before, during, and after World War II, Edward and Wallis were called out as Nazi sympathizers. In 1937, they went to Germany and met Adolf Hitler. Wallis also changed her name back to her maiden name before marrying Edward at the Château de Candé, Monts, France, on May 4, 1937. Wallis then became known as the Duchess of Windsor.

In 1940, the Duke was appointed Governor of the Bahamas, and the couple moved to the islands until he relinquished the office in 1945.

In the 1950s and 1960s, the Duke and Duchess shuffled between Europe and the United States, living a life of leisure just as other elites. After the Duke's death in 1972, the Duchess lived in seclusion and was rarely seen in public.

Wallis herself died on April 24, 1986, at her home in Paris at the age of 89. The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, and the Prince and Princess of Wales attended the funeral and the burial. Princess Diana said it was the only time she had seen the Queen cry.

Wallis was buried next to Edward in the Royal Burial Ground near Windsor Castle. In April 1987, via a Sotheby's auction in Geneva, Wallis' jewelry collection raised $45 million for the institute, which was seven times its pre-sale estimate.

While much of Wallis' private life has been covered in great speculation and judgement, she is still a controversial figure in British history today.

As for Edward, you may find this article in the Daily Mail interesting.

At the request of one of my YouTube subscribers, I decided to decipher a bit of Wallis' and Edward's handwriting to give my opinion on their personality. You can watch that video below...

OPINION: the contents of this article is based on historic facts as cited in the hyperlinks provided. However, the video is based on the professional opinion of the author's skills, knowledge, and education yet should be considered entertainment and not solely be taken as fact.

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35-year Forensic Expert & Investigator @ www.FindMeGroup.org & www.ColdCaseFoundation.org / Ancient DNA & Inherited Traumas Nerd / Writer / Artist / Pianist / Author. Check references on website @ www.Forensology.com

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