Queen Elizabeth II Visits The Site Of Ground Zero
Queen Elizabeth II, of England, set foot on American soil for the third time in her life this past Tuesday, July 6, 2010. Her first trip here was in 1957 when the relatively new Queen was just 31; she spoke at the United Nations General Assembly, in New York, and took a ferry boat ride on that visit. Then, in 1976 she came to New York again, at age 50, this time greeting many anxious, adoring fans and stepping into Bloomingdale's.
Now, at age 84, after a nine-day visit to Canada, the Queen addressed the U.N. General Assembly once again. The Monarch was introduced by Ban Ki-Moon, the Secretary General, who welcomed her by stating, “In a changing and churning world, you are an anchor for our age.”
The Queen, wearing one of her elegant hats, addressed the assembly on the topics of terrorism, climate change, United Nations history and world peace; saying, “It has perhaps always been the case that the waging of peace is the hardest form of leadership of all.”
From here, it was on to ground zero, where the Queen was greeted by Governor Paterson and Mayor Bloomberg as well as many loyal admirers, standing in the 103-degree heat, anxious to get a glimpse of Her Royal Highness. The Queen placidly studied a lovely wreath laid in honor of the people who died on 9/11. Looking calm and resplendently cool, she was apprised of the progress of the new buildings going up.
Some of the families of the victims of 9/11 conversed with Queen Elizabeth and her husband, Prince Philip. The Royal Couple are known to always be at their ease when mingling among crowds such as this. Prince Philip asked a boy of 13 what he wanted to be, and the boy answered that he wanted to be a billionaire.
The final ceremony of the relatively short stay was at nearby Hanover Square, to officially open The British Garden honoring the sixty-seven British citizens who died on 9/11. Children often hand flowers and other gifts to the Queen when she makes public appearances at home in England; in New York, a beaming girl handed the Queen a bouquet of summer flowers. Her Majesty, the Queen, was later seen still holding the bouquet and smiling serenely.
A Little History
It is significant that the new British Garden is opening in Hanover Square. Queen Elizabeth’s Royal ancestry goes back to the Hanoverians. Her great, great grandmother, Queen Victoria and her great grandfather, Edward VII, were the last two monarchs of the Hanoverian lineage: Queen Victoria reigning for 64 years, from 1837-1901, followed by her son, Edward VII, who reigned for nine years.
The preceding line of kings were the Stuarts, who lived by the doctrine of the Divine Right of Kings, which says that kings were answerable not to man but to God. The Royal credo clashed with Parliament, and the ensuing Civil War, led by Oliver Cromwell, culminated in the defeat of the Royal army and the execution of King Charles I.
Thus, England was ruled without a King from 1649-1660. Charles II, son of Charles I, finally became King followed by his brother, James II. The throne was then occupied jointly by William of Orange and Mary, daughter of James. Queen Anne was the last of the Stuarts; she ruled from 1702-1714.
A German House
The first Hanoverian King, George I, could speak no English - he was German; but, because of the prevailing Protestant sentiment among the English subjects, the new Parliamentary appointed Germanic King was welcomed. And as the Monarchs became completely English, they were thoroughly embraced. By Queen Victoria’s time, the Royals had made a world-renowned impact and enjoyed overwhelming popularity and genuine love of the British people.
The House of Winsor
George V, Queen Elizabeth’s grandfather, changed his German name from Saxe-Coburg-Gotha to Windsor, during WWI as a conscientious gesture amidst anti-German sentiment among the people of Britain. Elizabeth’s father, George VI, was crowned King upon the abdication of his brother, Edward VIII, who decided to marry an American divorcee rather than be King.
George VI led the country through WWII, along with Prime Minister, Winston Churchill. Princess Elizabeth, at age fourteen, addressed the English people by radio, inspiring much love and patriotism. Her mother, Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, was also well-loved by the people for her outward show of compassion during war-time.
Princess Elizabeth, the eldest child of the King, was crowned Queen upon her father’s death in 1952. Her husband, Philip Mountbatten, became Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh. The Queen undertook her duties in the shadow of grief over her father’s death; but, she also was greeted with warm love and popularity from the English people.
From the outset, the Queen allowed superior guidance in Prime Minister Churchill. Queen Elizabeth II has always carried out her duties with utter professionalism, and though her role has become mostly formal in regards to her responsibilities among Parliament and the world at large, the Queen’s symbolic meaning remains true among many around the globe.
The Winsors have suffered family scandal and tragedy in the 58 years of the Queen’s reign, from highly publicized divorce to the tragic and untimely death of Princess Diana, in 1997. The Queen herself has, most unfairly, sustained a lot of the blame and fallout; but to this day, she emerges with dignity and grace.
The most profound impact that Queen Elizabeth II has established is the bridging of the influences of her great, great grandmother, Queen Victoria’s, House of Hanover to the modern Royal Monarchy. Hanover remains one of the most interesting places in Germany and in history. Hence, the English Garden in Hanover Square, New York.
In New York this week the Queen was described, as she often is, as ephemeral, beautiful, regal, fantastic, gorgeous and - in possession of “a certain something”.
Of her adoring subjects who send her supportive cards and letters, the Queen states, “You see, they really do understand.”
Queen Elizabeth II is followed by her son Prince Charles, The Prince of Wales, first in line to the throne, and her grandson, Prince William, second in line to the throne.
The Queen’s popular website was visited 12,500,000 times in its first two months.
The Queen's Royal Website
- Welcome to the official website of the British Monarchy
The official website of the British Monarchy. Information on the history of the Monarchy, today's royal family and the Royal Art and Residences
Books About The Queen
Movies About The Royals
Tracy (author) from San Francisco on October 05, 2010:
eilander, What a frightening thought - your last phrase! I can't imagine ever being out of peace with England. I have never been to England but am an Anglophile nontheless. And I always feel that we are culturally and spiritually alike, rather than different. They do love to make fun of us, though. However, I believe they admire us - some, greatly so!
eilander1542011 from Everywhere on October 03, 2010:
It is amazing how incredibly different countries are form us here in America. Even countries that have many of the luxuries and amenities that we enjoy, still have such vastly different social, political and spiritual lifestyles than we do here. It is nice to see that we seem to at least be at peace with our mother country... for the time being.
Tracy (author) from San Francisco on August 20, 2010:
I wonder if the celebration was felt all over the country or just in New York when you were six. The Queen received a fairly enthusiastic welcome in the City this summer, but I'm not too sure about 'round the country. Thanks for stopping by - good to see your beautiful picture!
Pamela Lipscomb from Charlotte, North Carolina on August 20, 2010:
Queen Elizabeth visited New York when I was six years old. It was really a big deal from what my parent told me.
Tracy (author) from San Francisco on August 14, 2010:
Hey James! I knew you couldn't stay away for long ~ taking a breather from book-writing is healthy:) Thanks for the cameo appearance and good luck with the book!
James A Watkins from Chicago on August 13, 2010:
This is an excellent Hub. It is thoughtful and educational. I enjoyed reading it very much. Thank you!!
Tracy (author) from San Francisco on August 02, 2010:
It's nice to find another fan of the Queen. There are some beautiful pictures of her when she was young ~ now those images are making their way into card stores and other creative gift-shops. I love it ~ thank you for the fan mail, too!
Joy56 on August 02, 2010:
that was so interesting, and nice to see the Queen smiling on some of those pictures too, well done. I remember the picture of her when she was young on 1 pound notes.
Tracy (author) from San Francisco on July 16, 2010:
Thank you, Peggy. I just love the Queen. I can't even really say why. Partly, she reminds me so much of my grandmother! But, also, you have to have a measure of respect for her, no matter what your politics. She embodies something legendary - even in her own time. Thanks for stopping by ~
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on July 15, 2010:
Queen Elizabeth has always maintained an air of refinement and elegance. I think that the monarchy fascinates those of us who experience different forms of government. Excellent hub and really good photos!
Tracy (author) from San Francisco on July 11, 2010:
It's good to hear from you, Storyteller, and thanks for the positive feedback! Yes, the Queen does command respect - you can see it even through the pictures. Sorry your daughter did not get to see the event or the Queen. There is so much to do in NY!! I'm glad the hub captured your interest ~ Thanks.
Hi, drbj, glad you enjoyed this hub. You put your finger on it: "elegant" is the word to describe the Her Grace! You always find the best words ~ Thanks for stopping by.
drbj and sherry from south Florida on July 11, 2010:
Hi, tracykarl - this tribute to Queen Elizabeth is as elegant and regal as Her Majesty. Thank you for providing all the interesting history and details.
Barbara from Stepping past clutter on July 11, 2010:
tracykarl99, I love the images you choose to define the Queen's third visit to the U.S. I can visualize her remaining cool even in 103 degrees. She maintains her grace inspite of everything and I must respect her for this. Her family history also fascinates me. Certainly Americans have nothing like this and it reads like fantasy. Thank you for noticing that she was in New York (my daughter lives there and did not mention it). Your description of her visit to Ground Zero was especially poignant.