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Hardcover Conspiracy of Crowns: The True Story of: The Duke of Windsor and the Murder of Sir Harry Oakes Book

ISBN: 0517575078

ISBN13: 9780517575079

Conspiracy of Crowns: The True Story of: The Duke of Windsor and the Murder of Sir Harry Oakes

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Format: Hardcover

Condition: Good

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The Failed Frame-Up of a "Crime of the Century"

It was a dark and stormy night in the Bahamas. The next morning July 8 , 1943 Sir Harry Oakes, one of the richest men in the British Empire, was found murdered in bed. This made page one news around the world. Oakes was a crude, tough man who became fabulously rich by finding a rich gold mine in Ontario (p.5). He was rich enough to buy a title from the British Crown (p.6), and still had the rude manners of the rough and tumble mining camps. Oakes had business problems and planned to move to Mexico. Bahamas had low taxes, and a bank that laundered money (p.8). Harold Christie spent that night sleeping in the next bedroom. He heard no sounds of a struggle, nor the smell of smoke from the fire. The Governor of the island summoned two Miami police detectives to investigate (p.19). The crime scene had not been secured. Later all handprints and fingerprints were removed (p.22)! Alfred de Marigny, the son-in-law of Oakes, was arrested for the murder. The Duke of Windsor personally took charge of the police investigation (politics?). De Marigny had disrespected the Duke. But it came as a shock to be arrested for Harry Oakes murder. "Trials are not really about truth or justice. They are about winning ..." (p.69). The accused in Britain is worse off than in America (p.65). De Marigny's wife hired the famous New York detective Raymond Schindler. Page 79 hints of the trouble that can arise from drinking a glass of water while in police custody. The two caretakers who saw a mysterious cabin cruiser the night of the murder were suddenly found dead (p.81)! Page 86 tells how fingerprints can be forged. The four small holes in Oakes' mastoiditis could only have been from a small-caliber pistol (p.92). "Part Three" is his condensed autobiography. The older economy of the Bahamas is described (pp.145-146). De Marigny's sailing was an escape from worldly cares (p.156). The King's Cup Regatta is explained (p.162). Godfrey Higgs' cross-examination of James Barker was "one of the most brilliant"; it cast doubt on the fingerprint evidence (p.219). After being found 'not guilty', de Marigny passed a polygraph test (p.234). Alfred was termed "undesirable" because he sailed on Sundays instead of praying in church (pp.237-239). Alfred agreed to write an autobiography for Random House; then somebody shot at him so he canceled the book (pp.253-254). Alfred tells of meeting Mrs. Betsy Bloomingdale (pp.262-263). On a trip to Grand Bahamas Alfred finally learned what happened to the two night watchmen that night (pp.289-290). Did Sir Harry Oakes lend money to someone who couldn't repay? Remember the Harvard College murder circa 1850? The Epilogue gives Alfred's solution to the murder. You need to read the book for its background knowledge. Alfred mentioned the reasons for the Duke's dislike of him; the event of the Exchange Control Board suggests some hidden rivalry (pp.169-170). Alfred's recollections appear to be carefully edited. Do some of Alfred's claims seem to be se

Good rendition of a mystifying historical event.

I found A Conspiracy of Crowns very good. As far as I know there are 3 books written concerning this offically unsolved mystery. Only Alfred de Marigny gives a first hand account of the events surrounding it. I lived in Nassau 14 years after the occurrence, and rumours and stories continued to abound even then. The conclusions that Mr. de Marigny came to regarding the perpetrators of this crime are very logical and feasible. Following Alfred de Marigny's acquittal of the false accusations against him, of the murder of Sir Harry Oakes; a publisher asked him to write his account of the events. He agreed, but after his life was twice threatened, he did not have the book published until decades later.
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