Archie Christie

Colonel Archibald Christie was a handsome and quite dashing officer in the Royal Flying Corps when he met Agatha. They met at a dance for the young men of the army stationed in Exeter. They danced several times and had a great evening. Agatha described Archie as "a tall, fair young man, with crisp curly hair, a rather interesting nose, turned up not down, and a great deal of careless confidence about him." For the next few weeks, Archie made "frequent and unexpected appearances." They were married Christmas Eve of 1914; however, soon after that he was in France while Agatha stayed at their home in Torquay doing volunteer work with the Volunteer Aid Detachment. There she worked in the hospital dispensary, and it was there she learned all about poisons and chemicals. Her first book did fine (2,000 copies sold) but she didn't collect any royalties. Archie suggested that she try a second book, The Secret Adversary, something that ended up being a moderate success. Things were going well for the Christies after that. Archie was working at a London business firm and Agatha's writing began to really take off.

They had one daughter, Rosalind, who was born in 1919. Agatha said that her husband was "mad about Rosalind." It seemed that Archie and Rosalind understood each other better than she did with Rosalind. Agatha described herself at this period of time as "happily married." In 1924, Archie was asked by a Major Belcher (director of the British Empire Mission) to travel around the world as Belcher's business manager. Agatha was invited to come and they travelled for 10 months to areas such as Canada, Hawaii, New Zealand, Australia, and South Africa. Agatha recounted this tour as "one of the most exciting things that ever happened to me." In 1925, the Christies bought their first home (named by them as "Styles House", named after the home featured in her first novel). It was really exciting because it was priced below market value and was near a golf course. Golfing was a favorite between the two and played it often (Agatha said she even won a competition once). Golfing was a must on the weekends for Archie and Agatha once said this about that obesseion: "he was taking the game so seriously now that it might have been a religion."

Their relationship was beginning to be strained--some part had to be blamed on the game of golf. Agatha began to be troubled by Archie's love for golf, so much so that Agatha felt he was more interested in golf than he was in his own family. She had to get away for a little, so she went to Corsica without him. When she returned, she received news that her mother Clara was gravely ill with bronchitis. She passed away shortly after but Archie didn't want anything to do with it. Agatha described him as someone who hated "illness, death, and trouble." His solution for Clara's passing was for everyone to go to Spain. Agatha refused to leave and Archie stayed in London.

More than a month later, he announced that he was in love with another woman, and demanded a quick divorce. The woman was Nancy Neele, the former secretary of Major Belcher. After a small separation, he returned to Agatha and Rosalind for reconciliation. This was utter failure and Agatha described it as "a mistake". Archie announced in December of 1926 that he decided to finally leave Agatha and marry Miss Neele. Archie packed his bags and left for a friend's house, where Miss Neele was waiting for an engagement party. That same day, December 4 (many sources say the 3rd or even the 8th), was when Agatha totally broke down and disappeared. (To read more about Christie's disappearance, click here.) After the ordeal of Agatha's disappearance, Archie left Styles for good. Christie said this about the entire episode and about Archie: "So, after illness, came sorrow, despair, and heartbreak. There is no need to dwell on it. I stood out for a year, hoping he would change. But he did not. So ended my first married life." Agatha and Archie were divorced in April of 1928. Archie did marry Nancy Neele at St. George's Church in Hanover Square (London), and remained married until she died in 1959. Archie Christie died in 1962.