Monday, November 29, 2021

The Passing of a Patriarch: Andrew Andreevich Romanoff, Prince Romanovsky (1923-2021)

Prince Andrew at his home in 2015.
Photo (c) Hearst Newspapers via Getty Images / San Francisco Chronicle.

On 28 November 2021, Andrew Andreevich Romanoff, Prince Romanovsky, died at the age of ninety-eight. Andrew was the longest-lived male-line descendant of the Romanov dynasty. He was the last surviving great-nephew of the last Russian Tsar, Nicholas II.

Prince Andrei Alexandrovich of Russia

Born on 21 January 1923 at London, Andrew was the youngest of the three children of Prince Andrei Alexandrovich of Russia (1897 - 1981) and his first wife Donna Elisabetta "Elsa" Ruffo di Sant' Antimo (1886 - killed in London during the Blitz in 1940). Andrew followed two older siblings: Princess Xenia Andreevna Romanovsky (1919 - 2000) and Prince Michael Andreevich Romanovsky (1920 - 2008). Since their parents' marriage was morganatic, Andrew bore the style and title His Serene Highness Prince Romanovsky, which was granted to his parents by the Head of the Imperial House.

Andrew's paternal grandmother: Grand Duchess Xenia Alexandrovna of Russia
Andrew's paternal grandfather: Grand Duke Alexander Mikhailovich of Russia.

Andrew grew up near his grandmother Grand Duchess Xenia (1875 - 1960), who lived in a grace and favour cottage at Windsor. He did not have as much contact with his grandfather, Grand Duke Alexander Mikhailovich, as Xenia and Alexander lived separately in exile. Andrew Andreevich received his education at the Imperial Service College. He joined the British Navy in 1942, and served until the end of World War II.

Andrew Romanoff's Petition for Naturalisation, 1954.
Andrew Romanoff's Petition for Naturalisation, 1954.
Prince Andrew's eldest son: Alexei Romanoff, 1969.
This photo was taken when Prince Alexei was a student at St. Mary's College High School.
In 1949, Andrew moved to the United States and settled in Oakland, California. In 1954, he became a US citizen. Andrew studied criminology and sociology at the University of California, Berkeley. On 9 September 1951 at San Francisco, Andrew married Elena "Helen" Constantinovna Dourneff (Tokyo, Japan 5 May 1926 - Oakland 31 May 1992), the daughter of Constantin Afanasievich Dourneff and his wife Felixa Stanislavovna Zapalski. Andrew and Helen had one son: Alexei Andreevich Romanoff, Prince Romanovsky (b.Alameda 27 April 1953; married Zoetta Leisy). Andrew and Helen divorced in 1959. In 1968, Helen Dourneff Romanoff married to US Air Force Technical Sergeant Odom Wayne Modling (1923 - 2007), a survivor of the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Andrew and Kathleen Romanoff after their civil wedding in 1961.
The obituary of Kathleen Romanoff (1967).
This appeared in The San Francisco Examiner on 10 December 1967.
Andrew remarried on 21 March 1961 to San Francisco native Kathleen Norris Roberts (San Francisco 1 March 1935 - San Francisco 8 December 1967; former wife of Gilbert Jay Roberts Jr.). The couple were joined in marriage by Judge Gerald Levin, who performed the ceremony in his chambers at the Hall of Justice. The bride wore a blue and white Dior print dress with a white coat. Kathleen's sister, Mrs. Hartley Cravens, was her attendant; Prince Nikita Romanov served as the best man for his cousin Andrew. Kathleen was the daughter of Dr. Frank and Mrs. Alice Norris (née McCreery); her grandmother and namesake was the noted author Kathleen Norris, wife of Charles Norris. Andrew and Kathleen had two sons: Peter Andreevich Romanoff, Prince Romanovsky (b.San Francisco 21 November 1961; married Barbara Jurgens) and Andrew Andreevich Romanoff, Prince Romanovsky (b.San Francisco 20 February 1963; married Elisabeth Flores). Tragically, in 1967 Kathleen Romanoff died of pneumonia at the age of thirty-two. Princess Kathleen was laid to rest at the Serbian Cemetery in Colma, where her husband's uncle Prince Vasili Alexandrovich of Russia and his aunt Princess Natalia were also buried when they died in 1989. 
Andrew Romanoff and his wife Inez Storer in 2015.
Photograph (c) Todd Pickering
Finally and thirdly, Andrew married artist Inez Mary Storer (b.Santa Monica, California 11 October 1933; former wife of Thomas Tone Storer) on 27 December 1987 in Washoe County, Nevada. Inez was the daughter of architect Franz Nicholas Bachelin and his wife Anneliese "Anita" Maria Camilla Hirtfield.  Andrew and Inez resided in the idyllic town of Inverness, California. Like his wife Inez, Andrew Romanov was an artist, and his works were displayed in numerous exhibitions. He must have inherited the artistic streak that his grandmother, Xenia, and his grand-aunt, Olga, also possessed. A book entitled The Boy Who Would Be Tsar appeared in 2007 and documented Andrew's life. At the time its publication, the prince stated in a profile: "At certain moments I would be called upon to play the game, be a prince. But it's always the people around me who get exited about it. My mother and father just wanted me to grow up to be a real person.
Left to right: Prince Alexei, Prince Andrew with his granddaughter Princess Natasha, Prince Peter, and Prince Andrew, 1995.
Prince Andrew is survived by his widow, his three sons and his daughters-in-law, and his granddaughter.
May He Rest in Peace.

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Portrait of Grand Duke Vladimir Kirillovich of Russia at Auction This Week

A portrait of Grand Duke Vladimir Kirillovich of Russia, only son of Grand Duke Kirill Alexandrovich and Grand Duchess Victoria Feodorovna, will be sold in London tomorrow by MacDougall's Fine Art Auctions. Serge Ivanoff, the artist who created this depiction of Grand Duke Vladimir, Head of the Imperial House of Romanov from 1938-1992, completed the painting in 1944. The grand duke sat for sittings in Paris, where the portrait was finished.

Source: Portrait of Grand Duke Vladimir Romanov

Monday, November 22, 2021

Thyra, Duchesse d'Harcourt (1930-2021)

La duchesse d'Harcourt.
Portrait (c) Carme Arisa.

Thyra de Zayas, Duchesse d'Harcourt, died on 8 November 2021. She was ninety-one years-old. 

Alfonso de Zayas.
Juliette d'Harcourt.
Born on 31 August 1930 at Palma de Mallorca, Maria Teresa "Thyra" de Zayas y d'Harcourt was the daughter of don Alfonso de Zayas y Bobadilla (1896-1970), Marques de Zayas, and his first wife Marie Gabrielle Juliette Vierne d'Harcourt (1900-1977), who wed in 1921. Thyra had five siblings: José Eugenio de Zayas y d'Harcourt (1924-2011), Margarita de Zayas y d'Harcourt, Carlos de Zayas y d'Harcourt, Carmen de Zayas y d'Harcourt, and Luis de Zayas y d'Harcourt. 
The history of the Marqués de Zayas.
Revista Hidalguía número 73. Año 1965, p. 775.
Thyra's paternal grandparents were Bartolomé de Zayas y Borrás and María del Pilar Bobadilla y Escrivá de Romaní. Her maternal grandparents were Count Eugène d'Harcourt (1859-1918) and Armande de Pierre de Bernis (1876-?). Thyra's maternal uncle was Count Bruno d'Harcourt, who married Princess Isabelle d'Orléans.
François, Duke of Harcourt.
On 17 January 1961, Thyra de Zayas married François, 11th Duc d'Harcourt (1902-1997). The couple were third cousins. Their common ancestors were Eugène, 8th Duc d'Harcourt, Duc de Beuvron and Aglaé Terray. François and Thyra did not have children.
Thyra, Duchess of Harcourt.
Photo (c) Getty Images / Simon Cochard.
The funeral of the duchesse d'Harcourt took place at l'église de Thury-Harcourt on 13 November 2021, and she was buried in the chapel of the Château d'Harcourt. A mass for the duchesse will be held at the Basilique Saint-Clotilde in Paris on 23 November 2021.

May Thyra Rest in Peace.

Sunday, November 21, 2021

Royal Karađorđević Baby Expected!

Princess Ljubica and Prince Mihailo of Serbia with their daughter Princess Natalija.

Princess Ljubica of Serbia shared last week that she and her husband, Prince Mihailo, are expecting their second child. The couple, who married five years ago in October 2016, have one daughter, Princess Natalija, born in 2018. The newest Karađorđević will be a great-grandchild of King Alexander I of Yugoslavia and Queen Marie (née Romania); Prince Mihailo, father of Princess Natalija and her younger sibling-to-be, is the youngest child of the king and queen's second son, Prince Tomislav. 


PRINCEZA LJUBICA I PRINC MIHAILO IMAJU LEPE VESTI: Uskoro postaju roditelji po drugi put!

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Lobkowicz Twins Karl and Nicolas Engaged to European Aristocrats

The engagements of the twin and youngest sons of Prince Wenceslas von Lobkowicz (b.1953) and his wife Princess Armelle (b.1955; née de Guillebon) have recently been announced. 

Prince Karl von Lobkowicz (b.1993) is engaged to Astrid Dagneau de Richecour, the daughter of Dominique Dagneau de Richecour (b.3 August 1961) and his wife Béatrice (b.1965; née de La Barre de Nanteuil). Astrid has four siblings, two brothers and two sisters: Eléonore, Thomas, Mayeul, and Pauline. Astrid's paternal grandparents are Louis René Robert Dagneau de Richecour (1927-Paris 3 August 2012) and Marie Jeanne-Françoise de Font-Réaulx (Paris 29 June 1934-Le Kremlin-Bicêtre, Paris 12 May 2001). Astrid's maternal grandparents are Vicomte Joachim de La Barre de Nanteuil and Geneviève de Rubercy (d.13 August 2013).

Prince Nicolas von Lobkowicz (b.1993) is engaged to Benedetta Zanardi Landi, the daughter of Count Antonio Zanardi Landi di Veano (b.Udine 24 May 1950), an Italian ambassador to various countries, and his wife Countess Sabina (b.1963; née Cornaggia Medici Castiglioni). Benedetta has a brother, Pietro, and a sister, Catarina. Benedetta's paternal grandparents are Count Vittorio Zanardi Landi di Veano (~1909-1999) and Mariangela De Faveri Tron (~1926-2017). Benedetta's maternal grandparents are Gherardo Cornaggia Medici dei Marchesi di Castellanza (Milan 11 November 1912-Porto Ercole 17 August 1983) and Donna Guilia Boghese (Rome 21 March 1926-Rome 13 November 2006).


January 2004 - Un udinese ambasciatore a Belgrado

August 2013 - Madame Geneviève De La Barre De Nanteuil

October 2017 - Oggi l’ultimo saluto alla contessa Zanardi Landi

November 2021 - Fiançailles princières Lobkowicz

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

The Fiftieth Birthday of the Duchess of Aosta

Princess Olga.
Painted by her mother Marina Karella (Princess Marina of Greece).

Today, Princess Olga of Savoy, Duchess of Aosta, celebrates her fiftieth birthday!


Princess Olga and her father Prince Michael.

Born at Athens on 17 November 1971, Princess Olga Isabelle of Greece is the second daughter of Prince Michael of Greece and Denmark (b.1939) and Princess Marina (b.1941; born Marina Karella), who married in 1965. Olga has one sister, Princess Alexandra (b.1968; married Nicolas Mirzayantz).

Princess Françoise d'Orléans and Prince Christoper of Greece on their wedding day, 1929.

The paternal grandparents of Olga are Prince Christopher of Greece and Denmark and Princess Françoise d'Orléans. The maternal grandparents of the princess are Theodoros Karella and Elly Chalikiopoulos.

Aimone and Olga's engagement picture, 2005.

On 7 May 2005, Princess Olga and Prince Aimone of Savoy (b.1967), Duke of Apulia, became engaged in Turin. Aimone is the only son of Prince Amedeo, Duke of Aosta, and his first wife Princess Claude d'Orléans. Although related in several different ways, Olga and Aimone are second cousins. Both are the great-grandchildren of Prince Jean d'Orléans, Duke de Guise, and his wife and first cousin Princess Isabelle d'Orléans. 

The Duke and Duchess of Apulia on the day of their religious wedding, 2008.

On 16 September 2008, Aimone of Savoy and Olga of Greece were civilly married at the Italian embassy in Moscow, Russia, where the couple live. The pair celebrated their religious wedding on 27 September at the Church of Panagia Diasozousa on the Isle of Patmos in Greece. Their union was attended by their parents and by King Constantine II and Queen Anne-Marie of the Hellenes.

The Duke and Duchess of Apulia with their first child, Prince Umberto, at his baptism.

The first child of the Duke and Duchess of Apulia arrived in 2009. Prince Umberto Sathya of Savoy, Prince of Piedmont, was born on 7 March at Neuilly-sur-Seine. The prince was baptised on 18 June and received as godparents Princess Maria Gabriella of Savoy and Carlo Radicati di Primeglio.

The baptism of Prince Amedeo of Savoy.

Aimone and Olga welcomed their second child in 2011. Prince Amedeo Michel of Savoy, Duke of the Abruzzi, was born on 24 May at Paris. The prince was baptised on 8 June 2012 at Milan in the Basilica of San Marco and received as godparents Princess Mafalda of Savoy, Princess Marina of Greece and George Antaki.

The baptism of Princess Isabella of Savoy.

The Duke and Duchess of Apulia had their third child and only daughter in 2012. Princess Isabella Marina Vita of Savoy was born at Paris on 14 December. The princess was baptised on her first birthday, 14 December 2013, at the église Saint-Thomas-d'Aquin in Paris.

The 2020 Christmas card of the Aostas, showing Prince Umberto, Princess Isabella, and Prince Amedeo.

Prince Aimone and Princess Olga, Duke and Duchess of Aosta, live with their children in Russia. Naturally, they have very close ties with their families in Italy and Greece. 

Princess Olga and Prince Aimone arrive at the reception following the wedding of Grand Duke George of Russia in Saint Petersburg, 2021.

Our best wishes to Princess Olga on her birthday!

Saturday, November 13, 2021

A Century Since the Death of Princess Imperial Isabel of Brazil

The Brazilian imperial sarcophagi (from left to right): Princess Imperial Isabel, Emperor Pedro II, Empress Teresa Cristina and Prince Gaston at the Catedral de São Pedro de Alcântara. Photo (c) Seth B. Leonard.
One hundred years ago, on 14 November 1921, Princess Imperial Isabel of Brazil, Countess d'Eu, died at the Chateau d'Eu in France at the age of seventy-five years-old. The princess was initially buried at Dreux. In 1953, the earthly remains of the princess and her husband Prince Gaston were repatriated to Brazil, and in 1971 they were both buried at the Cathedral of Petrópolis. 

A portrait of Princess Isabel at the Imperial Museum of Brazil in Petrópolis. Photo (c) Seth B. Leonard.
Born on 29 July 1846 at the Palácio Imperial de São Cristóvão in Rio de Janeiro, Princess Isabel Cristina Leopoldina Augusta Micaela Gabriela Rafaela Gonzaga of Brazil was the second child and first daughter of Emperor Pedro II of Brazil (1825-1891) and Empress Teresa Cristina (1822-1889; born Princess of the Two Sicilies). Isabel had three siblings: Prince Afonso (1845-1847), Princess Leopoldina (1847-1871; married Prince August of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha), and Prince Pedro (1848-1850). Following the premature deaths of both of her two brothers, Isabel became the heiress to her father the Emperor.
The home of Princess Isabel in Petrópolis. Photo (c) Seth B. Leonard.
The residence of Princess Isabel and her husband Prince Gaston. Above the door is the couple's intertwined initials. Photo (c) Seth B. Leonard.

On 1 October 1864, Princess Imperial Isabel of Brazil married Prince Gaston d'Orléans (1842-1922), Count d'Eu, at Rio de Janeiro. The couple had four children: Princess Luísa Vitória (born stillborn in 1874), Prince Pedro de Alcântara (1875-1940; married Countess Elisabeth Dobrzensky von Dobrzenicz), Prince Luíz (1878-1920; married Princess Maria Pia of Bourbon-Two Sicilies), and Prince Antônio (1881-1918).

A painting of the Princess Imperial taking the oath to become Regent of Brazil in 1870. Photo (c) Seth B. Leonard.
Due to Emperor Pedro's bouts of ill health, the Princess Imperial was called to act as Regent of the Brazilian Empire several times. It was during her last regency that Isabel signed the Golden Law in 1888, which completely abolished slavery in Brazil. Due to her act, Isabel became known as "The Redemptress" and she received the Golden Rose from Pope Leo XIII. Another side effect of the princess taking this step was to hasten the downfall of the Empire of Brazil, as conservative factions were not pleased by the abolition of slavery. In 1889, Isabel's father Pedro II was deposed in a coup by the military, which led to the establishment of the Republic of Brazil. As a result of this, the Emperor and Empress as well as Princess Isabel and Prince Gaston together with their children were compelled to leave the country for Europe. Empress Teresa Cristina died within months of leaving Brazil, and Emperor Pedro II died two months after leaving his beloved people.
The statue of Princess Isabel the Redemptress in Rio de Janeiro. Photo (c) Seth B. Leonard.
During exile, the Princess Imperial and the Count of Eu settled in France. In 1920, the Brazilian Republic repealed the law banishing the members of the imperial family from the country. Isabel was already too ill to even contemplate a return to Brazil. Fortunately, as written above, the remains of the princess now rest in the nation to which she devoted her life.

The Duke of Harar (1947-2021), Grandson of the Last Emperor of Ethiopia

The Duke of Harar in front of a picture of his late father.

The Duke of Harar died on 10 November 2021 in the United States. He is survived by his wife, the now Dowager Duchess of Harar (née Connie Jo Quave). The duke was a grandson of Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia.

A communiqué was issued by the duke's brothers after his passing:

Statement of their Imperial Highnesses Prince Michael Makonnen, Prince Tafari Makonnen and Prince Beede Mariam Makonnen.
It is with deep sorrow that we announce the passing of our beloved brother, His Imperial Highness the Duke of Harrar, Prince Wossen Seged Makonnen Haile Selassie after a long illness.  
Prince Wossen Seged, (“Paul”) was born in Addis Ababa, on the 21st of August, 1947, the eldest child of their Imperial Highnesses Prince Makonnen Haile Selassie and Princess Sara Gizaw, the late Duke and Duchess of Harrar. He was thus a beloved grandson of His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie I and Empress Menen Asfaw of Ethiopia. After the death of his father Prince Makonnen in May 1957, Prince Wossen Seged was formally installed as Duke of Harrar just a few months before his 10th birthday. Prince Wossen Seged received his education in the United Kingdom and Switzerland, before returning to Ethiopia. He was among the members of the Imperial family to be imprisoned by the Derg regime following the overthrow of the monarchy in 1974, and was held under harsh conditions until he was released in 1989 along with his brothers. His Imperial Highness then moved to the United States to the state of Nevada where he married and lived happily for many years. Prince Wossen Seged passed away on November 10, 2021, and is survived by his widow, his brothers, and larger extended family who loved him very much. 
We would like to express our deep gratitude to the many people from all over the world who have reached out to us to offer their sympathies at this difficult time. We are very moved by the affection shown towards our brother, and to our family. The funeral will be held in privacy in light of circumstances, and we ask for everyones understanding. May God rest the soul of our dear brother Prince Wossen Seged in paradise, and may his memory be eternal.
May the Prince Rest in Peace.

Friday, November 12, 2021

The Fate of the "Secret" Family of Prince Victor Napoléon and Marie Alice Biot

Prince Victor Napoléon and Alice Biot.

In 1905, reports in the Belgian press, which spread to international outlets, increasingly indicated that Prince Victor Napoléon, Head of the Imperial House of France, and Princess Clémentine of Belgium had fallen in love and desired to marry. However, there were several impediments to their plans to wed. King Léopold II of Belgium, the father of the princess, was not keen on such a union as he did not want to upset the French Republic. Further, there was much made about the liaison of the Prince Napoléon with a former French ballerina named Marie Alice Biot. It was written that the couple had married and had children. This pre-existing marriage would obviously get in the way of Victor and Clémentine's hopes to become husband and wife.

Prince Victor Napoléon.
Prince Victor Jérôme Frédéric Napoléon was born at the Palais Royal in Paris on 18 July 1862 as the first child and eldest son of Prince Napoléon Bonaparte (1822-1891) and Princess Clotilde of Savoy (1843-1911), who married in 1859. Victor's paternal grandparents were Prince Jérome Bonaparte, erstwhile King of Westphalia, and his second wife Princess Catherine of Württemberg. Victor's maternal grandparents were King Vittorio Emanuele II of Italy and his first wife Archduchess Adelheid of Austria. At the time of Prince Victor's birth, his first cousin once removed was Emperor Napoléon III of the French, who was deposed in 1870. 
A short profile of Alice Biot in Ces demoiselles de l'Opéra, 1887.
Sometime during the 1870s, Prince Victor Napoléon began a relationship with Alice (Marie) Biot, a ballerina at l'Opéra in Paris. At a very young age, Mademoiselle Biot made her début at the Paris Opéra in May 1870 at the premiere of the ballet Coppélia in the role of Cupid. In March 1880, Alice danced in the premiere of the ballet Aida. A brief 1887 profile of the ballerinas of l'Opéra noted that Biot was "an intelligent and amiable person. [She] works very much. [She] leads a simple and normal life." Alice Biot retired from the Opéra in 1896. 
Alice Biot.
The liaison between the prince and ballerina only became public knowledge nearly thirty years after it began. Victor's desire to marry Clémentine left the door open for the press, perhaps aided by persons [i.e. King Léopold II] not wishing their attachment to materialise into marriage, to report on his ties with Alice. It was widely noted that at some date Prince Victor Napoléon and Alice Biot had religiously, but not civilly, married in France. They had several children together. When Victor moved to Brussels, Alice and their children followed him to the Belgian capital. While the prince lived in home on the Avenue Louise, his apparent wife and their children lived in a separate residence, though not too far from his own.
Pierre Biot.
Eugéne Biot.
Suzanne Biot.
Within the past two decades, more information has come to light about Victor Napoléon and Alice Biot's relationship. It is not certain whether the couple were ever religiously married, as no church records have been found to confirm this. One of the most insightful resources on the couple is a biography of Victor entitled Le Prince Victor Napoléon, which was written by his great-granddaughter Laetitia de Witt and published by Fayard in 2007. This work confirms that Victor and Alice were together for quite some time. Laetitia de Witt writes that Alice Biot was granted the title of Contessa di Beauclair/Beauclerc (Comtesse de Beauclair/Beauclerc) by King Umberto I of Italy at the request of Prince Victor. De Witt also writes that Victor and Alice had two sons: Pierre and Eugéne. It is possible that the pair had a further child, a daughter named Suzanne, who is not mentioned in the biography of Prince Victor. Aside from Suzanne, whose descendants have published genealogical information online regarding her life, it is not known what became of Pierre and Eugéne. 
The acte de mariage of Suzanne Biot and Walter Unger, 1898.
On 21 December 1898 at Paris, one Alice Marianne Suzanne Andrée Biot (born at Paris on 13 March 1882), the daughter of a Marie Biot and an unnamed father, married Walter Unger (born at Vienna in January 1869), a cavalry officer in the Italian army and the son of Charles Unger. Among the witnesses to the marriage were Count Edouard d'Harcourt, a M. Biot de Beauclerc (possibly the mother of the bride), and an Austrian count. If Suzanne Biot was indeed the daughter of Prince Victor Napoléon, then the prince has many descendants alive today who are not a part of the Imperial House of Bonaparte.

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Romanov Weddings: Princess Marina Romanov and William Beadleston in 1967

On 8 January 1967, Princess Marina Vassilievna Romanov married William Lawrence Beadleston at the Nativity of the Holy Virgin Russian Orthodox Church in Menlo Park, California. Mrs Igor Sazevitch was the matron of honour. Katherine Sazevitch was the flower girl; Prince George Golitzin, aged 9 and the bride's first cousin, and Robert Hadow, aged 7 and another relative of the bride, also assisted in the marriage rite. Alfred N Beadleston, the groom's brother, was the best man. The ushers were Prince Andrew Romanov, Igor Sazevitch, Christopher Schroll, Michael Palmquist, Sydney Waud, Yale Kneeland, Richard Hurd, William Acquavella, Lewis Lehrman, James Meeker, Charles Mellon III, and Joseph Hexon. The religious service was sung by Reverend George Benigsen and Prince Alexander Golitzin. The marriage was blessed by Archbishop John Shahovskoy. After the wedding, a reception was hosted by Mr and Mrs Hannes Schroll at their Woodside home. The engagement of William L Beadleston and Princess Marina Romanov had been announced in November 1966. 

Grand Duchess Xenia with her granddaughter Princess Marina.

Born on 22 May 1940 at San Francisco, Princess Marina Romanov was the only child of Prince Vassili Alexandrovich of Russia (1907-1989) and Princess Natalia Alexandrovna Galitzine (1907-1989), who married in 1931. Vassili was the youngest child of Grand Duke Alexander Mikhailovich of Russia and Grand Duchess Xenia Alexandrovna of Russia. Natalia was the daughter of Prince Alexander Vladimirovich Galitzine and Lubov Vladimirovna Glebov. Princess Marina Romanov attended Crystal Springs School and Sarah Lawrence College. She received her teaching credentials from Bank Street College of Education in New York. 

Born on 31 July 1938 at Long Branch, New Jersey, William "Bill" Lawrence Beadleston was the son of Alfred Nash Beadleston (1912-2000), the President of the New Jersey Senate and Mayor of Shrewsbury, and Sylvia Lawrence White (b.1915), who married in 1935. William Beadleston attended the University of Paris and graduated from Yale in 1960. He was an art dealer at Acquavella Galleries in New York. 

After their marriage, Bill and Marina planned to live in New York City.

Marina Romanov

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