Charles Edward Stewart, King of America?

Now there’s a thought, King of America Charles Edward Stewart.  Actually it was more than a thought du du dahhhhhhhhhh

In November 1782  4 gentlemen from America arrived at San Clemente Palazzo in Florence to put this offer to the exiled King Charles Edward Stewart, who we all know as the Bonnie Prince Charlie.

When establishing the Republic the Americans could not think about life without a monarchy or even a figure head, so much so, that they offered George Washington the job, but he declined for obvious reasons.  So they sent a Mr Galloway from Maryland, two brothers called Sylvester and a Mr Fish, a wee lawyer from New York, carrying letters of introduction.  When they got there his secretary John Stewart took them to meet with Charles.

This wasn’t the first time he had been approached.  Some men from Boston had been sent over with the same offer at the beginning of the colonial war.  This time they were a wee bit more confident, you know, cause they won.

Mr Galloway, allegedly, addressed the exiled ‘King’ saying;

‘Sir, we have letters, one especially which gives us the authority to offer the crown of America to the rightful king of great Britain.  I have told you that we in America are not yet wholly republicans.  But they are still a minority.  We may have got rid of a king who misgoverned us, but we have no wish to get rid of kingship.  We want a king of our own choosing, and would get him all the ancient sanctions of monarchy.’

I’m guessing that Auld Charlie wasn’t so sure so Mr Fish added;

‘Sir, we have the opportunity to start afresh, with a clean page to write upon.  We believe that the way abides peacefully in a royal house, with the ciphers who dignify without obstructing a popular constitution.  We come to you with the reasoned conclusion of the men who achieved liberty.  General Washington shares our views, and has asked Mr Hamilton to send us on this mission.’

Obviously not convinced, Charles answered

‘I have travelled far; I was even begged to join your party in ’75, but even then I refused, with hope to regain Scotland and England.’

He then, to try and get rid of them, you know, cause he probably needed a wee swally said;

‘Nay, sir you and your friends tell Mr Hamilton and General Washington that I was flattered by the thought, but I am too old. I have failed most of my life, and have no wish to fail more.  Thank you Gentlemen, but this is my answer – my last word on the subject.  Let us think no more upon it.’

And there goes any thought of a monarchy for America, but hey, just imagine…………

 

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About Nikki Laird

I am a daft kilt maker who loves finding out about new interesting information about Scotland and work here at ScotClans

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4 thoughts on “Charles Edward Stewart, King of America?

  1. Site

    Charles lived for several years in exile with his Scottish mistress, Clementina Walkinshaw , whom he met, and may have begun a relationship with, during the 1745 rebellion. In 1753, the couple had a daughter, Charlotte . Charles’s inability to cope with the collapse of the cause led to his problem with drink, and mother and daughter left Charles with his father James ‘s connivance. Charlotte went on to have three illegitimate children with Ferdinand , an ecclesiastical member of the Rohan family . Their only son was Charles Edward Stuart, Count Roehenstart . Clementina was suspected by many of Charles’s supporters of being a spy planted by the Hanoverian government of Great Britain.

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  2. John P. MacInnes

    Just to let you know that the information you quoted regarding the meeting between four American delegates and Prince Charles Edward Stuart is derived from the book The Forgotten Monarchy of Scotland by the fraudulent Michel Lafosse who calls himself “Prince Michael Stewart of Albany”. Like the supposed history in his book the section quoted was completely plagiarised from a Scottish novel! Sadly 14 years after he was forced to leave Scotland when his various frauds were uncovered, various bits of his wholly unreliable book still get quoted widely!

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  3. Gary Crossan

    Hi Nikki, this is really really intersting, thank you – do you have any reference for this?? Id love to reseach this more.

    Thanks

    Gary

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  4. Jerry Spencer

    You and your readers may be interested in the Stuart Supremacy series of naval historical fiction which imagines a world in which James II (‘the Great’) defeated William of Orange and planted the House of Stuart/Stewart firmly on the throne of England, Ireland and The Americas. His grandson, Charles III, sits precariously on the throne in 1782/1783 when the books are set, firstly in the Americas (Pretenders War) and then in Gerrmany (Succession) where James Fitz-James, scion of an illegitimate Stuart line, plans to seize the throne. The author is Martin Hilyard and both books are published on Kindle and Kobo……

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