Princess Henriette of Belgium

30 Nov 1870
28 Mar 1948
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Princess Henriette Marie of Belgium (30 November 1870 – 28 March 1948), Duchess of Vendôme, was the daughter of Prince Philippe, Count of Flanders, and Princess Marie of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen.

She was the younger twin sister of Princess Joséphine Marie of Belgium, who died at the age of six weeks in 1871.

She married in Brussels, Belgium on 12 February 1896 Prince Emmanuel of Orléans, 8th Duke of Vendôme (18 January 1872 Austria-Hungary – 1 February 1931 Cannes, France), He was a son of Prince Ferdinand, Duke of Alençon, and Duchess Sophie Charlotte in Bavaria, and was a great-grandson of King Louis-Philippe of France.

The couple had four children:

Princess Marie Louise (31 December 1897 – 8 March 1973); married Prince Philip of Bourbon-Two Sicilies.

Princess Sophie Joséphine Louise Marie Immaculée Gabrielle Philippine Henriette d’Orléans (born 19 October 1898 Neuilly-sur-Seine, France – died 9 October 1928 France), unmarried and without issue.

Princess Généviève d’Orléans (21 September 1901 Neuilly-sur-Seine, France – 1983 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), married
Antoine Marie François de Chaponay-Morance, Marquis de Chaponay-Morance (30 January 1883 Paris, France – 9 September 1956 Rabat, Morocco), on July 2, 1923, in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France, and had two children:

Pierre Emmanuel François Henri Baudoin de Chaponay-Morance was born January 24, 1925, in Paris, France, and died October 2, 1943, killed in action in the Gulf of Mexico. He was unmarried and without issue.

Henryanne Maria Pierre Emmanuelle Constance de Chaponay-Morance was born May 8, 1926, in Cannes, France, unmarried and without issue.

Prince Charles Philippe Emmanuel Ferdinand Louis Gérard Joseph Marie Ghislain Baudoin Christophe Raphaél Antoine Expédit Henri d’Orléans (4 April 1905 Neuilly-sur-Seine, France – 10 March 1970 Neuilly-sur-Seine, France), Duc de Nemours, de Vendôme et d’Alençon, married Marguerite Watson (12 Feb 1899 Richmond, Virginia – 27 Dec 1993) on September 24, 1928, in Paris, without issue.

Henriette was a great sportswoman, and was often considered the best shot among royal women. On one occasion, she killed a stag that had already killed another, making her very popular in Belgian sporting circles.

She even earned the sobriquet the “Sporting Duchess”. In 1908, she accompanied her husband to the Rocky Mountains in the United States to shoot grizzly bears.

She often did royal visits for her brother King Albert. In 1914 for instance, she visited a hospital in Neuilly that was treating American troops.

In two letters, Henriette and her sister-in-law Queen Elisabeth expressed their appreciation and asked for more support from the American Commission For Relief in Belgium, which had been giving donations to the Belgian people ever since the German invasion.

Henriette Marie of Belgium died aged 77, on 28 March 1948, in Sierre, Valais, Switzerland.

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