27 Rarely Seen Photos of Queen Elizabeth with Her Father, King George VI
Take a visual tour of this endearing father-daughter relationship. Be warned: some snapshots just might break your heart.
A mum, a dad, and a newborn princess
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King George VI was born His Royal Highness Prince Albert, the second-born son of King George V. When Prince Albert (called “Bertie” by his friends and family) married Lady Elizabeth Bowes Lyon, the two became the Duke and Duchess of York. Here, the Duke and Duchess are pictured with their newborn, Her Royal Highness Princess Elizabeth of York. When Elizabeth was born, there was virtually no expectation she’d ever become Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.
Just out of the terrible twos
In this sweet family portrait from 1929, the Duke of York smiles at his toddler daughter, who sits on her mum’s lap.
Daddy’s in military garb; a princess salutes
In this photo taken the summer of 1931, the Duke exits the car in military garb after his wife and daughter, while Princess Elizabeth salutes members of the military. Check out these sweet nicknames the royal family uses for each other.
In their childhood, Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret had an adorable miniature house that was a gift from the people of Wales. In this 1933 photo, the two princesses pose with their pups and their parents outside the tiny house.
The Princess bridesmaid
Young Princess Elizabeth was a bridesmaid at the November 1934 wedding of Prince George, Duke of Kent (a younger brother of George) to Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark. Elizabeth is pictured here with her dad, the Duke of York, but what’s most notable about this photo is that it was taken the same day Elizabeth first met her future husband, Philip Mountbatten, who was Prince of Greece and Denmark at the time. Read all about how Queen Elizabeth fell in love with Prince Philip.
Kids Day at the Horse Show
The Duke and Duchess of York and Princess Elizabeth arrive at the Richmond Horse Show for an array of Children’s Day events on June 14, 1935. Don’t fall for these myths about the royal family that are totally false.
A family portrait from 1936
As it turned out, 1936 would be an especially important year for this family, though they couldn’t have known it at the moment this photo was snapped. Earlier that year, King George V had died, and his firstborn son, King Edward VIII, had ascended to the throne. But before the year ended, Edward VIII abdicated and left the throne to his brother, Prince Albert; he would ascend the throne as King George VI.
New King, Queen, and heir presumptive
When this photo was taken in 1937, King George VI had just recently ascended the throne. Princess Elizabeth was now the heir presumptive. That isn’t the same thing as an heir apparent; there was still the theoretical possibility that the King would father a male child and, in those days, a younger brother would have taken Elizabeth’s place in the line of succession. This rule, known as “male primogeniture,” ended during Queen Elizabeth II’s reign. Here are more rules Queen Elizabeth has broken.
A newly crowned King and his family
This photo was taken on the balcony of Buckingham Palace just after the coronation of King George VI on May 12, 1937. From left to right, we see the new Queen Elizabeth, Princess Elizabeth, the Dowager Queen Mary, Princess Margaret, and the newly crowned King.
A day at the theater
King George VI, accompanied by his wife, Queen Elizabeth, and their daughter, Princess Elizabeth, arrive at the Coliseum Theatre in London for a charity matinee on March 27, 1938. Find out what it’s really like to work for the royal family.
Not the cheap seats
King George VI, Queen Elizabeth, and Princess Elizabeth are seen attending the theater on March 27, 1939, to benefit The King George VI Pension Fund for Actors and Actresses.
The royal wave
On June 22, 1939, the royal family, having just returned from their royal Canadian tour, appear on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. Check out these 13 “facts” about Queen Elizabeth II that aren’t true.
A visit to Dartmouth Naval College
In this photo, taken during a July 1939 visit to Dartmouth Naval College, Princess Elizabeth plants a tree while her father looks on and holds the hand of Elizabeth’s younger sister, Princess Margaret.
A photo of the King taking a photo
At an August 1939 event at Abergeldie Castle, which is not far from Scotland’s Balmoral Castle, King George VI, wearing a kilt, holds a camera to his face. He was an avid photographer, a hobby Queen Elizabeth II adopted. Here are 14 more hidden talents of the royal family.
A closely-knit family
This photo, taken in 1942, shows the royal family, including Princess Elizabeth, 16, doing some knitting for the British troops.
A princess’s first tour
On April 4, 1944, Princess Elizabeth, Queen Elizabeth, and King George VI stood in a scout car during an inspection of royal artillery units. It was Princess Elizabeth’s first full-length tour with her parents.
Young Elizabeth follows in her father’s footsteps
In this photo of the royal family taken on the balcony of Buckingham Palace in 1945, Princess Elizabeth wears a military uniform, following in the footsteps of her dad.
A laugh between Dad and daughter
Here, we see the king sharing a laugh with his oldest daughter in 1946. These are 13 of the funniest royal family moments caught on camera.
Meet the (royal) family
In 1947, Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, RN, asked Her Royal Highness Princess Elizabeth for her hand in marriage. She accepted. This photo was specially posed by the royal family in connection with the upcoming wedding.
Later that same day…
The royal family sat for a more intimate photo, just the four of them. Most people don’t realize that Elizabeth and Philip are actually related—here are more facts you never knew about the British royal family.
The bride-to-be, Princess Elizabeth, emerges from her carriage as King George VI looks on. The wedding day had some hiccups, which includes the “tiara incident” that occurred just before this photo was taken. Check out these 15 other historical royal wedding mishaps.
Post-royal wedding photo
Associated Newspapers/Evening News/Shutterstock
On November 20, 1947, Princess Elizabeth married the Duke of Edinburgh (previously Philip Mountbatten, the former Prince of Greece and Denmark). Here, the future Queen stands between her father, King George VI, and her husband, who is chatting amiably with his new mother-in-law, Queen Elizabeth; next to her is the dowager Queen Mary.
Meet His Royal Highness, Prince Charles
HRH Prince Charles was born at Buckingham Palace on November 14, 1948. In this photo, we see four generations of the royal family: the newborn Prince Charles; Prince Charles’s mother, then-Princess Elizabeth (holding Charles); Elizabeth’s father, King George VI; and King George VI’s mother, the dowager Queen Mary.
Grandpa’s pride and joy
King George VI watches as Princess Elizabeth assists baby Prince Charles as he walks in early 1950. Princess Margaret and Queen Elizabeth stand to the right, gazing at the future Prince of Wales. Can you identify these other royal family members by their childhood photos?
A family photo from Scotland
In this photo taken on the grounds of Balmoral Castle in Scotland in late summer 1951, King George VI is on the far left and Queen Elizabeth is on the right; in the center are Princess Elizabeth, her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, and young Prince Charles, who is sitting on the deer sculpture. Princess Margaret is in the background. Here are 21 more rarely seen candid photos of the royal family.
Bon voyage to a princess…
On January 31, 1952, King George VI, along with his wife and daughter, Margaret, descends the steps of the royal plane on which Princess Elizabeth sits with her husband. The King, Queen, and Princess said goodbye to the royal couple as they were leaving for a tour that would take them to Kenya. It was while she was in Africa that Elizabeth learned that she would become Queen.
Long live the Queen
On February 7, 1952, Elizabeth, made her first appearance on English soil as Her Majesty, the Queen. She wore black because she was mourning the death of her father, King George VI. He had passed away two days earlier. Now, read up on these 40 fascinating facts about the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II .