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The Life of Churchill

Learn more about the life of Sir Winston Churchill

Why study Winston Churchill?

What makes him relevant in the 21st century? Members of the Churchill family and the Churchill Centre answer the question in this video short.



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"Father Always Came First, Second And Third"

Finest Hour 116, Autumn 2002

As Churchill’s daughter, Mary Soames had the run of 10 Downing Street and helped arrange dinner with Stalin. She talks to Graham Turner about eighty rich and varied years.

Graham Turner is a journalist whom we knew years ago when he covered the motor industry and wrote a penetrating, oft-quoted book, The Leyland Papers. He has since moved to weightier subjects for The Daily Telegraph, by whose kind permission this article is reprinted.

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He was the lion who roared when the British Empire needed him most. 

He held many positions during his long career and was an accomplished civil servant.  Winston Churchill entered the Royal Military College of Sandhurst, and graduated with honors in December of 18941.   He later saw action in Cuba, India, Egypt, Sudan, the front lines of World War I, and even took part in one of the last British cavalry charges in history2.   When he turned twenty-five, Churchill was elected to Parliament, and began his career as a statesman in the House of Commons.  He went on to serve as First Lord of the Admiralty, Minister of Munitions, Chancellor of the Exchequer, and Prime Minster.  In his private life, Winston Churchill was an avid reader and scholar, painter, author, journalist, and war correspondent.  Historians widely attribute Churchill with being “the greatest statesman of the 20th century.”  Churchill was an effective leader and statesman because of his tremendous ability to inspire people; his unique strategic insight; his relentless passion; and his imperturbable personality.

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About The Official Biography

WINSTON S. CHURCHILL
by Randolph Churchill & Martin Gilbert


Churchill had long wished to write his father's biography, and by the end of the 1950's was making strong efforts to win his father's confidence. In May 1960 Winston Churchill wrote to his son:

"My dear Randolph, I have reflected carefully on what you said. I think that your biography of Derby [Lord Derby, by
Randolph Churchill, Cassell: London 1959] is a remarkable work, and I should be happy that you should write my official biography when the time comes. But I must ask you to defer this until after my death. I would not like to release my papers piecemeal, and I think that you should wait for the time being and then get all your material from my own Archives and from the Trust. In any case, I do not want anything to be published until at least five years after my death. -- Your loving father, Winston S. Churchill"

The first volume of Winston S. Churchill was published in 1966, the year after Sir Winston died. After Randolph's death in 1968 Martin Gilbert, who had joined Randolph as a research assistant in 1962, was appointed the official biographer. Sir Martin is presently completing the Companion Volumes, the latest of which included the following acknowledgement: "The publication of [The War Papers] was made possible by the exceptional generosity of Wendy Reves, and by the determination of the International Churchill Society [now The Churchill Centre, Washington, DC], and its then United States president, Richard Langworth, to bring the Churchill document series, known as the Companion Volumes, back into production."

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Reason.tv: How Churchill Became Churchill-rediscovering young Winston's classical-liberal American mentor, Bourke Cockran

The untold story of Young Winston and his American mentor.

Reason.tv's Nick Gillespie recently sat down with Reason contributing editor Michael McMenamin, co-author with Curt Zoller of 2007's Becoming Winston Churchill, now out in a paperback edition from Enigma Books. The volume promises "the untold story of Young Winston and his American mentor." Read more...

 

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