Saturday, January 16, 2010
First Monegasque in DC
Regular readers of Mad for Monaco will recall that HSH Prince Albert I was the first Grimaldi to visit the United States when he went on a bear hunt in Wyoming with the famous "Buffalo Bill" Cody. You may also recall that Albert I tried to arrange the trip through President Teddy Roosevelt, himself a noted hunter, but was brushed off by the former Rough Rider. Well, many years later after a World War and Prince Albert becoming famous around the world for his trailblazing work in the field of oceanography as well as his service in trying to ease the suffering of the Great War the Prince of Monaco was honored by the American executive in a special way. Albert I became the first Prince of Monaco to be received at the White House when U.S. President Warren G. Harding had the Monegasque sovereign over to decorate him with the National Geographic medal and a medal from the National Academy of Sciences. As an interesting side note, the current Monegasque monarch, HSH Prince Albert II, has long said that it was a National Geographic map showing the environment in peril that first sparked his interest in environmentalism and eventually led to his long-standing crusade against global warming. The next Prince of Monaco, after Albert I, to visit the White House was HSH Prince Rainier III who was received by President Dwight D. Eisenhower with his soon-to-be wife and consort Grace Kelly.