Letters to Edith Stallings

Letters to Edith Stallings

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Hargrett Manuscripts
Creator: Sunderland, F. H.
Title: Letters to Edith Stallings
Dates: 1936
Quantity: 0.1 Linear feet (1 folder; MS601 to MS605 and MS607 to MS 617A housed together in 1 document box)
Abstract:The collection consists of two letters from F.H. Sunderland of Yorkshire, England to Edith Stallings of Athens (Ga.) in 1936. The first letter (November 13) discusses Wallis Simpson's divorce, her relationship with Edward VIII, and censorship of the press regarding the situation; criticism of Stanley Baldwin; comments on Francisco Franco and the situation in Spain; and Sunderland's opinion of George Bernard Shaw. The second letter (November 16) discusses Edward VIII and Simpson, Franklin D. Roosevelt and U.S. politics, politics in Massachusetts, and an anecdote about the Duke of Kent.
Coll. Number: ms602

Biographical/Historical Note

In 1936, a constitutional crisis in the British Empire was caused by King-Emperor Edward VIII's proposal to marry Wallis Simpson, a twice-divorced American socialite.

The marriage was opposed by the King's governments in the United Kingdom and the autonomous Dominions of the British Commonwealth. Religious, legal, political, and moral objections were raised. Mrs Simpson was perceived to be politically and socially unsuitable as a consort because of her two failed marriages. As British monarch, Edward was Head of the Church of England, which did not allow divorced people to remarry if their ex-spouses were still alive; so it was widely believed that Edward could not marry Mrs Simpson and remain on the throne. It was widely assumed by the Establishment that she was driven by love of money or position rather than love for the King. Despite the opposition, Edward declared that he loved Mrs Simpson and intended to marry her whether the governments approved or not.

The widespread unwillingness to accept Mrs Simpson as the King's consort, and the King's refusal to give her up, led to Edward's abdication in December 1936.[1] He remains the only British monarch to have voluntarily renounced the throne since the Anglo-Saxon period. He was succeeded by his brother Albert, who took the regal name George VI. Edward was given the title His Royal Highness the Duke of Windsor following his abdication, and he married Mrs Simpson the following year. They remained married until his death 35 years later.


"Edward VIII abdication crisis." Wikipedia.

Index Terms

Baldwin, Stanley Baldwin, Earl, 1867-1947
Franco, Francisco, 1892-1975
Great Britain--History--Edward VIII, 1936.
Massachusetts--Politics and government--1865-1950.
Roosevelt, Franklin D., (Franklin Delano), 1882-1945
Shaw, Bernard, 1856-1950
Spain--History--Civil War, 1936-1939.
Stallings, Edith Langdale, 1903-1987
United States--Politics and government--1933-1945.
Windsor, Edward, Duke of, 1894-1972
Windsor, Wallis Warfield, Duchess of, 1896-1986

General Notes

Cataloged as part of the Georgia Archives and Manuscripts Automated Access Project: A Special Collections Gateway Program of the University Center in Georgia.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

F.H. Sunderland, letters to Edith Stallings. Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, University of Georgia Libraries.

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

11Letter to Edith Stallings, 13 November 1936 ( 1.0 items )
2Letter to Edith Stallings, 16 November 1936 ( 1.0 items )