This is the true story of Highclere Castle, the real Downton Abbey, and its remarkable mistress Lady Almina, the 5th Countess of Carnarvon.
Like Lady Cora, in the late 19th C Lady Almina brought her significant dowry to the rescue of Highclere, funding improvements such as electricity and indoor plumbing. She also supervised the temporary conversion of the castle to a hospital in WWI.
The current Countess of Carnarvon also lives at Highclere. She isn’t much of a writer, but the great estate has an intriguing history, and the parallels to the PBS series are entertaining. A bonus is the inclusion of numerous black and white photos of the 19th C estate and its residents.