Today marks the 160th Birthday of Princess Beatrice, youngest daughter of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, who was born on this day in 1857. Known as Baby in the family, Princess Beatrice became the greatest solace and constant companion to her mother after the death of her father in 1861. Eventually she became Queen Victoria’s private secretary, and when she told her mother she wanted to get married, she was met with silence. For seven months her mother did not speak to her, but communicated by notes. Eventually, the Queen relented and agreed only if the Bride and Groom would live with her after the wedding. In 1885, Princess Beatrice married Prince Henry of Battenberg, who was a brother-in-law of her niece, Princess Victoria of Hesse. The couple had four children and continued to live with her mother, as her full-time confidante and secretary. In 1896, Prince Henry died of malaria while returning to the UK from Africa. Princess Beatrice was appointed Governor of Carisbrooke Castle and Captain-General and Governor of the Isle of Wight, and after Queen Victoria’s death in 1901, she went to live at Kensington Palace. For 30 years afterwards, she transcribed and edited her mother’s journals, written from 1831 to 1901, and was responsible for deleting material that might have proven hurtful to living people. She died in 1944, and was buried at the Battenberg Chapel on the Isle of Wright. Princess Beatrice was survived by two of her four children, the Marquess of Carisbrooke and Queen Victoria Eugenie of Spain.
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