|The King and Wallis Simpson with friend Katherine Rogers in the Balmoral estate,1936. Image: Kerry Taylor/BNPS.|
Never-before-seen private pictures of King Edward VIII and his American mistress Wallis Simpson on cruise shortly before he abdicated the throne were recently unearthed. The controversial cruise eventually led to the crisis that culminated to Edward VIII's abdication in 1936.
In one of the photos, the king was snapped standing shirtless while on holiday in Greece, just like any carefree young Englishman.
The album is part of a private collection containing 200 pictures detailing the summer outing of the king with his mistress. Edward embarked on the trip even if the government went against it.
Simpson was still married to her second husband, ship broker Ernest Simpson and her relationship with the British monarch was still unknown in public.
Only a few months later, King Edward decided to marry Wallis – plunging the country into near constitutional crisis that only ended when he decided to abdicate.
The album was recovered by the granddaughter of Herman Rogers, who, together with his wife Katherine, was a close friend to the couple. In fact, it was Rogers who took the photos of the couple.
The party proceeded to Balmoral Castle in Scotland and there they continued their festivities. There was even a picture showing the King dressed in a deer-stalking cloak while his cousin, Louis Mountbatten, was standing next to him.
Aside from the photo album, Rogers' granddaughter also discovered a beautiful gold Cartier cigarette case which the embattled couple gave to Rogers after their wedding in June 1937. For more pictures of Edward and Wallis' European jaunt, click here and here.