Deborah Vivien Freeman-Mitford Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire, was brought up in Oxfordshire, England. In 1950 her husband, Andrew, the 11th Duke of Devonshire, inherited extensive estates in Yorkshire and Ireland as well as Chatsworth, the family seat in Derbyshire, and Deborah became chatelaine of one of England's great houses. She is the author of "Wait for Me!, Counting My Chickens" and "Home to Roost," among other books, and her letters have been collected in "The Mitfords: Letters Between Six Sisters" and" In Tearing Haste: The Correspondence of the Duchess of Devonshire and Patrick Leigh Fermor." Following her husband's death in 2004, she moved to a village on the Chatsworth estate.
At the heart of this collection are three pieces of a different order and all remarkable: diaries of the inauguration of President Kennedy in 1961, of his funeral two years later and an account of the 'Treasure Houses of Britain' exhibition in Washington in 1985 .Her account of Kennedy's funeral is so heartfelt it is difficult to read.--Alan Bennett, from the introduction of Home to Roost"