She wished, she wrote, "to be able to benefit her fellow-creatures, " so she gave a sum of money, to be paid in Coburg each year, "among a certain number of young men and women of exemplary character belonging to the humbler ranks of life." The money was for apprenticing young men to trades, for buying them tools, and as dowries for young women being married. Each year after this a report was sent to the Queen so that she could know exactly how wisely the money was being spent.


{76}

1860

THE progress1 of the Prince of Wales through the eastern states of America was overshadowed by the elections of 1860, the coming victory of Abraham Lincoln, and threats of the impending Civil War. Nobody seemed to think it incongruous for the great-grandson of King George III to be present during such important events in America's story and the streets were packed wherever he went, by curious crowds who succumbed to the charm of his young smile.

The first American town that the Prince saw was Detroit, three years before Henry Ford was born. Then came Chicago, "where the utmost order prevailed" because the mayor, John Wentworth, "a remarkable man," according to the Duke of Newcastle, had "a complete hold over the population." At St. Louis there was "none of the cheering and noisy enthusiasm of the loyal Canadians. " But there was "great curiosity ... and great courtesy."

On the way to Washington the Prince stopped at Harrisburg, the capital of Pennsylvania, and sat on the chair used by Hancock when he signed the Declaration of Independence.

On October 3, the Prince arrived at the White House, where his grandfather, the Duke of Kent, had taken tea with Mrs. Washington. The clamour of the elections competed with the Prince's success, but he smiled his way through every difficulty.

Two days later, the Prince went with the President to Mount Vernon. The correspondent for The Times wrote:

Before this humble tomb the Prince, the President, and all the party stood uncovered. It is easy moralising on this visit, for there is something grandly suggestive of historical retribution in the reverential awe of the Prince of Wales, the great-grandson of George III., standing bareheaded at the foot

-180-

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