Nancy Rubin Stuart

Author & Journalist

American Empress

The Life and Times of Marjorie Merriweather Post

Available in hardcover, paperback and as an ebook

American Empress is the best-selling history of the dramatic life of heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post, the daughter of breakfast-cereal magnate C.W. Post, founder of the Postum Cereal Company.

As a girl growing up in the Midwest, young Marjorie Post helped glue cereal boxes in her father’s barn, later sat on the board of directors of her father’s company,  befriended presidents, senators, diplomats and royalty and was dubbed the Duchess of Washington, D.C. and the Queen of Palm Beach. 

During the nearly nine decades of her life, the beautiful and vastly wealthy Mrs. Post had four husbands – among them, stockbroker, E.F. Hutton and Joseph Davies, ambassador to Soviet Russia under Stalin – built several dazzling  mansions, including Palm Beach’s legendary Mar-A-Lago, and sailed the seven seas on her huge yacht, the Sea Cloud.

A glamorous and warm-hearted woman who retained a Midwestern twang and fondness for square dancing, Mrs. Post was also mother to actress Dina Merrill. Throughout her life, she gave generously to countless civic and artistic cause, among them the National Symphony Orchestra, the Washington Ballet, and the Kennedy Center. 

Thanks to her brains, beauty and vast wealth, Mrs. Post was a woman well ahead of her era, whose natural business acumen created the frozen foods industry and helped transform the Postum Cereal Company into General Foods Corporation.

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American Empress was originally published in 1995 by Villard Books, a division of Random House, and became a Business Week and Newsday Best-Seller. 


Praise from the Experts


"This entrancing biography of Marjorie Merriweather Post ( 1887-1973) -- socialite, businesswoman, Palm Beach, Fla. pacesetter, opulent Washington hostess, philanthropist -- is full of high drama, gossip, scandal and international political intrigue....Rubin limns a warm, generous Christian Scientist, an imperious perfectionist mother of three daughters, a down-to-earth woman who held square -dance parties and peppered her speech with expletives." -- Publishers Weekly 

"A vibrant tribute to an enchanting lady...The biography is not only a tribute to one of the century's great ladies, but a fascinating social history of American life from 1887 when Marjorie Post was born to 1973, when she died at the age of 86...Resilident, optimistic, and marvelously genuine, Marjorie Merriweather Post seems entitled to every accolade in this vibrant and thoughtful biography. -- Los Angeles Times 

"She was rich and famous, and did it very well....it is refreshing to read of a woman who handled both enormous wealth and personal trauma with dignity, who dwelt in extravagant opulence, but gave with extravagant generosity. No poor little rich girl, Marjorie Merriweather Post. Hers was truly a rich life." -- San Diego Tribune

(Villard. ISBN: 0-679-41347-2)  (ASJA Press/iUniverse.  ISBN: 0-595-23967-6)  (Ebook: ASIN:  B-00--55-DZHCI   $4.62)