Marjorie Visits London – New Haven, Connecticut (1939)

In January of 1939, Marjorie was in London – months before the outbreak of World War II.

Marjorie mailed a postcard photograph to her friend, Mrs. A. M. Hunt.

Mrs. Hunt lived in New Haven, the cultural center and college town on the edge of Long Island Sound in south central Connecticut.,_Connecticut

The face of the postcard shows the south side of Westminster Abbey; most postcard views show the west portal beneath the twin towers.

The postcard was printed in Great Britain, although I cannot discern a publisher’s mark.

Like many parts of modern London, the Abbey was originally outside the city – the first Abbey was constructed in the 10th century on what was then an island in the Thames.

Edward the Confessor ordered the construction of the first Royal Church on the site, and he was the first royal burial on the site.

The present church was begun in 1245 under the authority of Henry III.

At its peak as an Abbey, the site was home to eighty Benedictine monks who performed the prescribed Divine Office every three hours in the choir of the vast sanctuary.

With the dissolution of the monasteries in the English Reformation, the Abbey became a “royal peculiar” under Elizabeth ! – an Anglican Church under direct administration of the Crown.

Beginning with William the Conqueror, Westminster Abbey has been the coronation site of 40 monarchs and the burial site of 18 English, Scottish, and British monarchs.

On the reverse, Marjorie thanks Mrs. Hunt for “the very sweet hanky”.

Marjorie hopes that Mrs. Hunt “had a happy Xmas” and sends love and best wishes for the New Year.

One hopes that Mrs. Hunt was pleased by the remembrance from England, that Marjorie returned safely from her travels, and that the friends survived well the struggles of the war that were to come.


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