Royal wedding fever is in the air as Great Britain’s Prince Harry wed American actress Meghan Markle on May 19- but did you know that marriages between Americans and European nobles once happened by the hundreds? During the Gilded Age, wealthy American heiresses married impoverished European nobles by the score. The marriages secured social status for “new money” American families often slighted by the established elites in their own country; while the infusion of American dollars allowed the impoverished nobility across the Atlantic to continue to maintain the lifestyles to which their families had been accustomed for generations. There were literally hundreds of these marriages, some more famous than others- including several featuring brides with roots in NJ. Join us as we discuss the so-called “dollar princesses” of the Gilded Age, to include Lady Monson (nee Romaine Stone, daughter of General Roy Stone of Morristown NJ), Lady Roberts (nee Elizabeth Marie LaRoche, daughter of William Tell LaRoche of Harrington Park, NJ), and Princess Miguel of Braganza (nee Anita Stewart, born in Elberon, NJ), and more.
Free, at the Strauss Mansion Museum.
Melissa Ziobro is currently the Specialist Professor of Public History at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, NJ, teaching courses to include Introduction to Public History, Oral History, and Museums and Archives Management. Her service to the University includes administration of the Monmouth Memories Oral History Program and her Department’s social media and newsletter.
Melissa serves on the Executive Board of Oral History in the Mid-Atlantic Region and as the editor for New Jersey Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal, a joint venture of the NJ Historical Commission, Rutgers University Libraries, and Monmouth University. She has worked with public history organizations such as the Monmouth County Park System, InfoAge Science History Learning Center and Museum, Monmouth County Park System, Monmouth County Historical Association, Monmouth County Historical Commission, Middlesex County Office of Culture and Heritage, National Guard Militia Museum of NJ, and more. She worked as a command historian at the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command, Fort Monmouth, NJ from 2004-2011.