Canada Was Home
“Shortly after 7 p.m. on Tuesday, January 19, the
telephone rang in the reception room of the stately
Chateau Laurier hotel in downtown Ottawa where reporters
were anxiously awaiting word of the birth.
A Dutch information officer from Montreal picked up the
receiver and quickly announced:
“Gentlemen, the baby is
born. It’s a girl.”
There was a collective gasp. Then everyone ran for the
phones to spread the news around the world. Some of the
reporters would dub the baby, somewhat romantically and
wistfully, Canada’s princess.
Bernhard, who was at the hospital, immediately informed
Queen Wilhelmina by telephone. “I’m so happy,” the queen
said, when told that everything had gone well.
“ I am very, very happy. Give Juliana a kiss for me.”
The hospital issued its first communiqué at 7:45 ; “The
princess is doing extremely well. The little princess
is a healthy baby of seven pounds, twelve ounces, which
is five ounces more than average weight.”
The next day, carillonneur Robert Donnell made the bells
in the Peace Tower of the Parliament Buildings ring out
joyously in the frosty air with the sound of Dutch
songs, including the national anthem.
And high above the tower, the red, white and blue of the
Dutch flag fluttered in the wind.
It was the first time a foreign flag had flown alone
from the seat of Canada’s government.”
An excerpt from the book: “When Canada Was Home (The
Story of Dutch Princess Margriet),” written by Albert
VanderMey, ISBN 1-895815-02-9
VANDERHEIDE PUBLISHING CO.LTD