0Thursday. 19th August [1897]—Schloss Friedrichshof, Kronberg
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19 August 1897 — Schloss Friedrichshof, Kronberg
Thursday. 19th August [1897]. It had rained heavily in the night & it was a damp dull morning when I got up. At 9 I went down to the hall & found Mme Parmentier there. Chatted with her until at 9.30 Countess                the Princess Victoria’s lady came down & Major Winslow the ADC & we went in to breakfast in the big dining room—a small table being laid in the bow window. Css Perponcher joined us later. The Empress & her daughter & son in law breakfasted alone in the breakfast room. We went afterwards to the hall & waited till they joined us & the Empress said she would like to show us the old Cronberg castle which she is restoring—so we started H.M., Mme Parmentier & I on foot. It rained a little & was very warm. The old castle is very interesting & for the last five years when it was made over to H.M. by her son the Emperor she had worked at the restoration & she says it wd last another 6 or 7 years. She employs 5 men every year from March to October & they do all they can manage in the time. They have opened windows & doors wh were closed when the Govt used the place as a granary– Have taken off whitewash & uncovered old frescos & inscriptions & have made the roof watertight & the floors & ceilings solid. We spent some time going about & seeing it all. Then got back to Friedrichshof at 12.30 & had just time to lunch at 1.15. Ola did not get up at all today being still very tired. H.M. saw her in the morning & told her not to stir. After luncheon Mme Parmentier took her departure & we were allowed to retire to rooms till tea time. I wrote letters & received a packet from England in wh was also enclosed a telegram Monty had sent me from Cowes saying “Good bye—dont worry I daresay it will be all right.” It arrived at Savile Row after I left & had been forwarded to me by post. After tea in the hall, H.M. drove with me, Major Winslow (a German of English descent) & Baron Reischach in an open carriage to the village of Königstein to the villa of a rich man of Frankfort Herr Andrae. It is beautifully situated—& full of old wood ceilings, presses &c. The house is new & every thing spick & span & very grand—but the house appears to be kept for show & there was not a book to be seen & no small touches of comfort to show the daily life of the occupiers. The lady of the house is good looking & dignified & pleasant. She was alone when we arrived & conducted us first thro’ the grounds which are delightful with nice trees—springs & rills & green grass & undulating ground. Then arrived our host & we went thro the house. H.M. visit had only been announced a short time before & Herr A. had evidently only just been sent for. It was 7 o’clock before we at last left the Villa, & we got to Friedrichshof at 7.45. H.M. went up with me to see Ola where I left her & went to dress for dinner. There was an interesting couple at dinner an ex Secretary of Bismarck’s Herr von Rothenburg & his American wife née Phelps. The Empress told me that he had had the art of writing the most impertinent letter under the most polite forms & as she passed me to go in to dinner—she whispered “That man was my bitterest enemy.” The wife is quite young but is a big stout woman of abt 25. She has a handsome face, good complexion & a charming expression full of kindness. Mme Guaita is short stout nicely dressed & nice looking & pleasant. She at once told me that her son had travelled by the same train from London with me & from Frankfort to Cronberg in the same carriage. He was just returning from school in Devonshire & from the few words I spoke to him I saw he had learnt to speak very good English. After dinner we sat in the hall & the village school master played on the American organ in the gallery. I talked to Mme Rothenburg & was delighted with her– She knew much of Europe her father having been American Minister at several Courts & had died at Berlin. She told me of their American New England home & how English they had always remained with a great love for the mother country. At 10 they departed & I went to the smoking room till 11 with P. & Pss Adolf, B. & Bss Reischach & Major Winslow. The other 2 ladies were out for the evening. H.M. gave me her programme of the music the schoolmaster played. It is written & illustrated by himself & he had done this special copy for her with her & the Emperor’s initials.

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