Saturday, February 13, 2010

Sir Harry Lauder Mourns for His Wife - A Valentine's Day Memory

I will assume that most people reading this will know the life story of Harry Lauder.  If not, there is an abundance of information on the Internet.  When in Chicago, Sir Harry Lauder  visited the old people at the Scottish Home at least once.

Harry Lauder was 5 feet 3 inches tall.  He weighted 170 pounds. Beginning in1906, he made 40 tours to America over a period of twenty years.  During his 1915 tour, he urged the U.S. to prepare for war.  In San Francisco he spoke to a crowd of twenty thousand.

Harry Lauder was born August 4, 1870 in Portobello, on the outskirts of Edinburgh.  By 1900, he was performing in London and had married 17 year old Nancy Vallance.  She often traveled with him to America.  Their only son died on the battlefield of Flanders in France.  John was a Captain in the 8th Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.  They were notified on January 1, 1917. King George V gave a Knighthood for his services during the war.

During WW I he became the first person to entertain troops on the battlefield with a small, custom built piano tied to the grill of a jeep.  He continued to entertain during WWII

By 1927, Sir Harry Lauder is on the Hebrides Islands grieving for his wife.  Sir Harry's grief is heavy and on his wife's grave he had placed a wreath with this inscription:

"To my sweetheart, darling wife, the sweetest flower that in the garden grew.  As a memory you will never fade.  You had all my love."  Harry.

A memory for Valentine's Day.

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