The Kaiser's Confidante Mary Lee, the First American-Born Princess


"This book makes a fascinating contribution to our growing understanding of the cultural anthropology of European court life on the eve of the Great War. By tracing the extraordinary career of the influential American-born Mary Countess von Waldersee at the very heart of Berlin high society down to her death in August 1914, Richard Jay Hutto sheds an enthralling light on the political intrigues and sexual scandals prevalent behind the outwardly brilliant facade of the Kaiser’s court which were undermining the legitimacy of the most powerful and restless military monarchy of old Europe."

– John C. G. Röhl, British historian and author, University of Sussex, Wolfson History Prize winner.

"The Kaiser was an intolerable old brute. But Mary Lee had a subtle influence on him which until now has been somewhat overlooked. Hutto gives us much to think about in this impeccably researched book."

– Royal biographer Hugo Vickers, author of Elizabeth, The Queen Mother; Behind Closed Doors: The Tragic, Untold Story of the Duchess of Windsor; Alice: Princess Andrew of Greece; The Private World of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor

"It is the research that stands out which makes this book fascinating reading. After finishing this book, I thought about how unique Mary was-- to be a rich American woman, married into the German aristocracy, who had the ear (and friendship) of the German Emperor and Empress."

– Marlene A Koenig, Royal Book News Read the full article...

"Excellently researched, Hutto’s work brings to life the cast of characters of the era, each worthy of their own biography. The many side stories mentioned in the text and footnotes concerning the people with whom Ms. Lee interacted make the book highly entertaining and educational. It’s a great read for those who enjoy the topic of power and negotiation, as well as lovers of history."

– Christopher N. Smith, Honorary Consul of Denmark in Georgia Read the full article...

"Her access to Kaiser Wilhelm II, the king of Prussia and the man whom Hutto says can be blamed for the loss of life in World War I, is in many cases chilling — particularly in the climate of zealous religious beliefs and of rigid prejudice, which was the precursor to the reign of Adolf Hitler."

– Katherine Walden, Columnist for The Telegraph  Read the full article...