Bessie Wallis Warfield, named after her aunt and her father, as she was born in Baltimore, Maryland, was something of a misfit from the start. Her arrival in June 19,1896 came just seven months after the marriage of her parents, causing some embarrassment to Warfield relatives for whom moral propriety was essential as the elite of Baltimore society. Bessie's father died when she was five months old and throughout her formative years, she and her mother had to rely on irregular handouts from a wealthy relative. Because her father left them with no money so they relied charity from her mother’s husband’s late brother.
As Wallis grew into a young woman, she was not necessarily considered pretty. Yet Wallis had a sense of style and poses that made her distinguished and attractive. She had radiant eyes, good complexion and fine, smooth black hair, which she kept parted down the middle for most of her life. Bessie discarded her first name - because "so many cows are called Bessie" - and learned how to flirt. But she was still shut out of the world she regarded as her birthright. Soon after the humiliation of "coming out" without the usual debutante's celebration ball, she grasped the first means of escape from Baltimore by becoming engaged.
On November 8 1916 she was married to her first husband, at the age of 20 was to a Navy pilot Earl Winfield Spencer. The marriage was reasonably good until the end of World War I when many ex-soldiers became bitter at the inconclusiveness of the war and the difficulty in adapting back to civilian life. After the Armistice, Win began to drink heavily and also became abusive. Wallis eventually left Win and lived six years by herself in Washington. Win and Wallis weren't yet divorced a...
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...buried alongside Edward in the royal burial ground at Windsor.
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