In the fall of 1951, Princess Elizabeth and her husband Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh embarked on a cross-Canada tour. The princess made a special request to include a stop at Niagara Falls.
Their royal highnesses arrived by train on Sunday, October 14 and were met by His Worship Mayor Earnest Hawkins and his wife Mrs Elsie Hawkins, with the Lincoln and Welland Regiment mounting an honour guard. War veterans had been invited to attend, forming up behind the Lincoln and Welland Regiment. It was a beautiful, sunny fall day.
At the official welcome ceremony, Princess Elizabeth and the Duke shook hands with 68 dignitaries and guests. Gifts of silverware from the McGlashan Clarke Silverware Company were presented to the couple, and a Royal Doulton figurine was gifted by the Parks Commission. It had “Made in England” stamped on the bottom, and Philip laughed that “it was made in England and now we’re taking it back”. Live scenes were shot by TV crews from the top of the General Brock Hotel.
At the brink of the Horseshoe Falls, Princess Elizabeth described the view as “magnificent” and “tremendous”. The couple also toured the (“my, it’s wet!”) table rock scenic tunnel. Crowds of 150,000 people in Niagara Falls cheered the royals throughout their visit, before they boarded the royal train to continue their tour across Canada.
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