Before he fell in love with Wallis Simpson, Edward VIII had fallen in love with America. As a young Prince of Wales, Edward witnessed the birth of the American century at the end of the First World War and, captivated by the energy, confidence, and raw power of the USA as it strode onto the world stage, he paid a number of subsequent visits: surfing in Hawaii; dancing with an American shop-girl in Panama; and partying with the cream of New York society on Long
Island. Eventually, of course, he fell violently in love with Wallis, a Southern belle and latter-day Scarlett O'Hara. Forceful, irreverent, and sassy, she embodied everything that Edward admired about modern America.
But Edward's fascination with America was not unreciprocated. America was equally fascinated by the Prince, especially his love life, and he became an international media celebrity through newsreels, radio, and the press. Indeed, even in the decades after his abdication in 1936, Edward remained a celebrity in the US and a regular guest of Presidents and the elite of American society.
Ted Powell spent the early part of his career as Fellow and Director of Studies in History at Downing College, Cambridge. Later he qualified as a solicitor, and spent many years as a partner of national law firm Mills & Reeve. He is now a full-time writer and lecturer, and lives in Cambridge.