Celebrity news, beauty, fashion advice, and fascinating features, delivered straight to your inbox!
Thank you for signing up to . You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.
In the second episode of The Crown season 3, aptly titled "Margaretology," Princess Margaret is presented as a makeshift U.S. ambassador forced to step in when Queen Elizabeth II's efforts to get U.S. president Lyndon B. Johnson to England fail. The episode, which culminates in Princess Margaret's successful, if untraditional, negotiation to a financial bailout, suggests that the Queen extended an offer to LBJ to visit more than once—invitations that LBJ rejected or ignored. This, as any The Crown fan knows, is unusual, to say the least. So: did it happen?
In short: There's no evidence such a thing happened. The Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library tweeted (opens in new tab) last July that, for reasons that aren't clear, LBJ and the Queen never met. (By comparison, LBJ and Harold Wilson, another key figure in season 3, met a handful of times, and Princess Margaret and her husband Lord Snowdon attended a White House dinner during her notorious U.S. tour in 1965).
Wrote the archivists in a statement from the LBJ Presidential Library: "President Johnson and Queen Elizabeth corresponded from March 1964 to July 1967. Nothing serious—congratulations on births, birthday wishes, and a condolence message after the death of Churchill. Queen Elizabeth never sent an invitation to President Johnson to visit Great Britain. And, President Johnson never sent an invitation to the Queen to visit the United States."
It's odd, really, the fact that these two never met. "We do not know why. (We've been asked this question before and have not found a specific reason.)" added the LBJ Library in its statement. The Queen did visit the U.S. in 1991, and met LBJ's wife, First Lady Lady Bird at that time, but didn't meet LBJ; the Johnson administration apparently planed two trips to Europe that may have included a trip to England, but both fell through, per the LBJ Library. (opens in new tab)
Even when LBJ was vice president to President John F. Kennedy, he and the Queen never met (even when JFK and the Queen met in 1961), the statement added. It's possible that they met at a State Dinner in the Queen's honor in 1957—at the time, LBJ was Senate Majority Leader—but that's not entirely clear, either. If we assume they didn't meet, then LBJ is literally the only U.S. President (of 12!) during the Queen's reign to have never met her.
The White House Historical Association confirms the LBJ Library's account (opens in new tab) via a page on its website: "Queen Elizabeth II never met President Lyndon Johnson during his presidency and was unable to attend John F. Kennedy's funeral because she was pregnant with Prince Edward."
The "Margaretology" episode also stretches the truth when it comes to Margaret's White House visit—which did happen, but was nowhere near as successful as The Crown suggests. In fact, Princess Margaret's tour in general was not as well-received as The Crown suggests, especially because she insulted a handful of celebrities along the way (she described Elizabeth Taylor's engagement ring as "vulgar," in just one example). That said, ultimately we don't really know what happened during Margaret's White House dinner—not much has been written about it, unlike the rest of her tour—nor do we know why, exactly, the Queen and LBJ never met. The Crown, it seems, is taking those spaces in historical knowledge and filling in the gaps.
For more stories like this, including celebrity news, beauty and fashion advice, savvy political commentary, and fascinating features, sign up for the Marie Claire newsletter.
subscribe here (opens in new tab)
Weekender Bags For An End-Of-Summer Getaway
In case you needed another reason to be pumped about your trip.
By Julia Marzovilla
What Are the Best Alternative Investments?
From Birkin bags to Banksy NFTs, entry-level and seasoned investors alike must be familiar with these factors to determine whether they should invest in the ever-changing world of alternative investments.
By Jillian Dara
Kate Middleton and Prince William Sent The Sweetest Thank You Note to a Girl Who Invited Prince George to Her 6th Birthday Party
A royal staffer said that the parents were “immensely touched” by the gesture.
By Isabel Mata
'Manifest' Season 4: Everything We Know
The once-canceled NBC show is returning for a final chapter (or two) on Netflix.
By Jenny Hollander
Where Is 'Virgin River' Filmed?
The Netflix show is set in California—but filmed in Canada.
By Bianca Rodriguez
The 15 Best Shows Featuring the 'Squid Game' Cast
If you can't get enough of Squid Game, try these K-dramas next.
By Quinci LeGardye
The 54 Best K-Dramas You'll Be Completely Hooked On
Wait, how is it already 2 a.m.?
By Quinci LeGardye
The 28 Best Korean Movies on Netflix in 2022
See you guys never.
By Quinci LeGardye
Rose Leslie and Theo James Play 'How Well Do You Know Your Co-Star?'
The 'Time Traveler's Wife' stars prove their chemistry is one for the ages.
By Marie Claire Editors
The 30 Best Black TV Shows Ever
Clear your schedule. You have some binge-watching to do
By The Editors
The 27 Best True Crime Shows to Binge-Watch
Real life can be a lot scarier than fiction.
By Cady Drell