Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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Visit of the Crown Prince & Princess of Germany

The reception at Ryde 1874

From the time of their arrival on the Isle of Wight, which was on the 3rd July, 1874, the Crown Prince and Princess of Germany had very kindly shown a readiness to assist by their presence and patronage any institution which had for its object the good of others. The temporary residence of the Imperial Family during their stay, being the Battery at Sandown. The bathing at Sandown was one of the principal enjoyments of the family and their Highnesses had received much benefit from the daily dips in the salt waters of the bay. They visited other Island places during their stay.  They departed on Monday 24th August, via the Ryde Pier and returned to the Royal Yacht.

Two Ryde photographers, Mr. Arthur Debenham and Mr. Knight, had attended by special command, and took some excellent photographs of the Crown Prince and Princess and the Royal children, separately and in groups.

Souvenirs that the Crown Prince presented:
To Mr. Higgs, auctioneer & estate agent. A costly gem pin, set in diamonds and pearls. At the head of the oval face of the pin was the Prince’s monogram, both set in pearls.

To Mr. J. W. Fisher, superintendent of Ryde Pier. A valuable pin, having the German spread eagles engraved in relief in the centre, with an inner centre-piece in ruby, surrounded with twelve diamonds. Also a cabinet photo of the Crown Prince.

Valuable gold pins were also given to, Mr. Madagan, of the South-Western Railway Company at Stokes Bay; Mr. Penty, stationmaster at Ryde; Mr. John Buckett, stationmaster at Sandown; Mr. Simmonds of the South-Western Company.

Others, including some of the tradesmen of Sandown, received photographs of the Prince and Princess.

To Mr. Albert E. Flux, of the Postal Telegraph Staff, Sandown office. A gold pin, bearing a relief engraving of the national arms of Germany, with the Prince’s monogram.

To Sergeant William Rapkins of the Hants Constabulary. A magnificent meerschaum pipe of colossal proportions and of great value, on its front, standing out in relief, a large carved bust of the Emperor of Germany—a life-like portrait—the silver mountings elaborate and massive and on the top the Prince’s monogram and the Imperial eagle.

Lost and Found (IW Observer 29 Aug 1874)
We were sorry to hear that Mr. J. W. Fisher, superintendent of the Ryde Pier, while in the act of showing a lady friend the handsome breast pin presented to him by the Crown Prince of Germany, accidentally let it slip into the sea through one of the apertures on the pier.  On Friday morning however, the treasure was recovered by a professional diver, who, after making several unsuccessful dips, fortunately secured the lost gift and restored it to its owner.

Full report of the visit can be read in the Isle of Wight Observer 29 August 1874, page 5.

Sources: IW Observer & The Pictorial World
Image: RSHG Archive Roy Brinton Collection

Article: Ann Barrett