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To Marry an English Lord by Gail MacColl

To Marry an English Lord (original 1989; edition 2012)

by Gail MacColl, Carol McD. Wallace

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4762221,697 (3.82)33
Title:To Marry an English Lord
Authors:Gail MacColl
Other authors:Carol McD. Wallace
Info:Workman Publishing Company (2012), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 403 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:read in 2012, non-fiction, history, england

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To Marry an English Lord by Gail MacColl (1989)



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Account of a social phenomenon; American ladies marrying British gentlemen in the second half of the 19th and early 20th centuries, the latter often titled but impoverished. Copiously illustrated but (by its nature) somewhat superficial. Still, an interesting insight into a vanished world. ( )
  DramMan | Oct 30, 2015 |
Despite plenty of interesting information, stories, and people, this book was ultimately hard to enjoy. Broken up, with numerous insets, asides, and tangents, it was hard to keep up with the many people who were covered, and sidebars about particular fashions/behaviors would sometimes be 50+ pages past a point where it might make sense in narrative to discuss them in more detail. Surely someone has written a a better book on the subject. ( )
  hikatie | Mar 13, 2015 |
Confession: I am not nor have I been watching Downton Abbey.
I am a huge Masterpiece fan and have watched many many of them since the 70's. Some of my absolute favorite entertainment.
However, there have been too many other wonderful distractions, so doubt I'll ever catch up with this series.
Deciding to invest more time in reading is a trade-off and this book was extremely interesting in detailing facts that were surprising.
Perhaps Downton Abbey fans already have all this info - if not - Read it!
Background on NewYork and London society, the reasons for and the mechanics of sending daughters to London to marry a title. And the wisdom of the Brits in sharing their title for the tremendous new wealth of American daughters. What splendid arrangements.
The number of these Trans-Atlantic arrangements was astounding - would not have believed it without the summary lists included here.
One can only hope there was some true love amongh all the pairings for titles and monies. ( )
  CasaBooks | Mar 14, 2014 |
The best thing about this book is the many photographs included; too bad it wasn't just designed as a coffee table book. I was fairly engaged by the early chapters, which detailed the first wave of American heiresses going abroad (mainly to England) in search of titled husbands. But once I got past Jennie Jerome, Consuelo Vanderbilt and a few others, their stories became repetitive, and in fact, the remainder of the books became repetitive. It's not just that the women's stories were all similar; MacColl actually recaps the SAME stories two, three, even four times in subsequent chapters. Then there are all those horrendous alphabetical lists. The worst was the last, which seemed to go on forever, listing each heiress with her father, husband, and manor house--again with much repetition. Add to this the fact that the book is full of annoying typographical errors (such as Alva Vanderbilt being referred to, not once, but twice, as "Aha"). I can only recommend that you flip through it to look at the photos and find a better book on the subject (which indeed deserves much better). ( )
  Cariola | Feb 17, 2014 |
This book is a history of the 1870-1890s phenomenon of title-rich but money-poor English Lords marrying American heiresses, and their lives both before and after it became fashionable to do so. The stories are very interesting, as are the descriptions of English servants. I did not enjoy the various lists of houses, Lords, and various families. An interesting but not particularly outstanding read. ( )
1 vote Sucht | Feb 2, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 22 (next | show all)
"Large fortunes were made in post-Civil War America. Young heiresses, cold-shouldered by an entrenched aristocracy that scorned new money, looked across the sea to find husbands among titled young Englishmen who were long on status but very short of cash. Nancy Astor and Jennie Churchill are the most famous of more than 100 of these trans-Atlantic brides. This light-hearted bit of social history is lavishly illustrated and bedecked with sidebars and boxes of charts, lively quotes, and other supplementary material. A full register of these enterprising young ladies and a "Walking Tour'' are included. Not only fun, but a definitive round-up of the players."
added by 2wonderY | editLibrary Journal

» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gail MacCollprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wallace, Carol McD.main authorall editionsconfirmed
Cain, DavidIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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There will always be an England, especially in America!
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Book description
Wonderful book detailing the flight of "new money" American Heiresses overseas to England in search of impoverished titled Husbands in the late 19th Century.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0894809393, Paperback)

In 1895, nine American girls, including a Vanderbilt (railroads), LaRoche (pharmaceuticals), Rogers (oil) and Whitney (New York trolleys), married peers of the British new money, among them, a duke, an earl, three barons and a knight. It was the peak year of a social phenomenon that began when the entrenched members of old New York snubbed these "new money" families after the Civil War, sending them off to England in quest of class and bequeathing to us Anglomania, Preppy, the Jet Set, and even Princess Di.

Here is the American Heiress's story. Filled with tales of wealth and marriage, sex and snobbery -- and 100-year-old gossip that's still scorching -- To Marry an English Lord is a heavily illustrated and energetically presented popular history. A rich tapestry of essays, sidebars, fact-filled boxes, and lively anecdotesoXcombined with wealth of portraits, drawings, photographs, and other rare Victoriana -- it chronicles the era of Mrs. Astor, Edith Wharton, King Edward VII, and the Marlborough House Set. Over 100 heiresses swapped dollars for titles. To Marry an English Lord is the only book to tell how they did it. Selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:03 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Read about a unique set of American women cutting a swath through stodgy 19th century British aristocracy. The book covers not just who they were but the lows and the triumphs of their inter-continental marriages. Also included are many fascinating details on how they dressed and what they had to go through.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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