Duchess Helene of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
|Duchess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz|
16 January 1857|
|Died||28 August 1936
|Spouse||Prince Albert of Saxe-Altenburg|
|Father||Duke Georg August of Mecklenburg-Strelitz|
|Mother||Grand Duchess Catherine Mikhailovna of Russia|
Duchess Helene of Mecklenburg-Strelitz (16 January 1857 – 28 August 1936) was a daughter of Duke Georg August of Mecklenburg-Strelitz and his wife Grand Duchess Catherine Mikhailovna of Russia. She was the second wife of Prince Albert of Saxe-Altenburg.
As the only daughter of Grand Duchess Catherine (herself the principal heiress to her father Grand Duke Michael), Helene was quite notably wealthy. She belonged to the Russian branch of the Mecklenburg-Strelitz family, and as such, had many ties to her mother's native country.
The Princess of Battenberg was eager for Helene to marry her son Alexander, the reigning Prince of Bulgaria, but he was uninterested in her. On 13 December 1891 at Remplin, Helene married Prince Albert of Saxe-Altenburg. He was the only son of Prince Eduard of Saxe-Altenburg by his second wife Princess Luise Caroline Reuss of Greiz, and had been previously married to Princess Marie of Prussia until her death in 1888. Through marriage Helene became step mother to Albert's two daughters Olga and Marie. Her own marriage to Albert was childless.
After their wedding, Helene and Albert spent half of the year in Russia, where he was much missed in Berlin society. In 1896, Albert and several other prominent social leaders left Berlin as a result of differences they held with Emperor Wilhelm II. He and his family retired to their Schwerin estate. Sources reported that Wilhelm's "arbitrary manners" became so intolerable to Albert and others, as they were used to the days of social courtesy under the old Wilhelm I.
Albert died on 22 May 1902. Helene remained in Russia until the Bolsheviks success in the Russian Civil War forced her, and her family to flee abroad in 1919. She lived in Copenhagen, Denmark from 1919 to 1923 and in Hellerup, Denmark from 1923 to at least November 1925. She eventually took up residence at Schloss Remplin in Mecklenburg with her nephew George, Duke of Mecklenburg and his family. They were joined in 1930 by her brother Charles Michael, Duke of Mecklenburg, who owned the property. It was at Remplin that Helene died on 28 August 1936.
- 16 January 1857 – 28 August 1936: Her Highness Duchess Helene of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
- "MECKLENBURG-STRELITZ". Royalty Guide. Retrieved 14 October 2010.
- Lundy, Darryl. "The Peerage: Helene Herzogin von Mecklenburg-Strelitz". Retrieved 13 October 2010.
- "Berlin-Malcom Clarke", Minneapolis Tribune, 22 July 1902
- The downfall of three dynasties (1970). Ayer Publishing. P 266.
- "Snubbed By The Kaiser", The New York Times, 17 February 1896
- "Britain and the Boers", The New York Times, Berlin, 9 February 1896
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