Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill
In Blenheim Palace at Woodstock on November 30th, 1874, Winston Churchill was born.1 He grew up as the first child of Lord Randolph Churchill.2 Lord Randolph Churchill held a seat as a member of Parliament and was considered a notable politician.3 Churchill s mother, the former Miss Jennie Jerome, was an American, whose father was a newspaper proprietor.4 Being in politics, Lord Randolph and his family traveled much, and bonded rarely. Winston Churchill was a disappointment to his father in many ways. For these reasons, Winston and his father were never close.5 Since Winston did not spend much time with his parents, a nanny was hired to take care of him and his younger brother.6 Her name was Mrs. Everest and she lived with the Churchill family for many years.7 Winston turned to her for many things and always felt her important role, by showing him affection throughout his life.8
Throughout his childhood, Churchill was described as an untidy, mischievous child. He was sent to boarding school, where he was constantly doing badly in his schoolwork, and also getting into trouble. Even though Churchill did badly in many areas of school, it was noted that he had a phenomenal memory. When he was thirteen he won a prize for reciting 1,200 lines from Macauley s Last Days of Ancient Rome, without a mistake.9 Winston Churchill was an individualist. He disliked team games such as cricket or football. He did however, excel in fencing, which earned him a silver medal in a school competition.
After finishing school, Winston went on to fight in the British Army. He loved head-to-head combat, but rarely saw much of it at this time. He served in many places and with many regimens, but his love for active service never decreased. Throughout his war career Churchill went through many things, such as being captured by Rebel forces in Cuba. Churchill was sent to a POW camp, but after four weeks he managed to succeed in his goal of escaping the prison.10
While on duty Churchill sent articles to Newspapers and magazines. To earn money he wrote for the Morning Post and the Daily Graphic . 11 He was paid to tell them about the happenings surrounding him and his own experience. At this time Churchill discovered his own gift for writing. He wrote many things from a novel called Savrola to a bibliography on his ancestor, the First Duke of Marlborough. Since writing came easy to Churchill he ventured into journalism. He sent his letters from Cuba, which were published in the Daily Telegraph . 12
Although Churchill was an accomplished journalist and had served in his nations military, he still longed for something more. Following in the footsteps of his father, Churchill turned to politics. He approached the Conservative Central Office in London and asked if he could make a political speech at a meeting. Because of a speech impediment, Churchill used is knowledge of the English language to overcome this hindrance.13 Winston was asked by the Conservative Party to fight a by-election. He was elected as a member of Parliament in 1900.14 Four years later, Churchill left the conservatives to join with the liberals. For several years, Churchill held offices from Secretary of State to the First Lord of the Admiralty. While serving in the latter position he devoted his time and energy to improving an already strong Navy. At this time, he also fostered what was to become the modern tank. The original contraption was nicknamed Winston s Folly. 15
In 1914 World War One started. Churchill had long foreseen the coming of this world disaster. Churchill had wisely set his goals on improving the British Navy so that it could sustain an attack, or deliver one. During WWII, Winston Churchill showed his courageous attributes by leading the Navy. However, too much of his succeeding, he was also blamed for failure. One of the biggest downfalls of his career happened when he was blamed for a failing mission that he had not even commanded. Later, Churchill was cleared of any wrong doings in the case.16
In the early 1930 s Churchill recognized the ruthlessness of Adolf Hitler. Although, not many people shared his concerns, Churchill was worried for his country. The British Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain wanted to prevent a war. So in September of 1938 Chamberlain along with Hitler and other leaders signed the Munich agreement. This bond stated that the leader would not overstep the boundaries of other countries. Churchill did not believe that Hitler was telling the truth. He was right. In March of 1939, Hitler took over the whole Czechoslovakia. Later that year, after Hitler s troops marched into Poland, England and France declared war on Germany.16
In 1940, after Chamberlain was forced to resign because of the loss of confidence, which he showed in the failure and collapse of Norway, Winston Churchill became Prime Minister.17 In addition to this office Churchill was named Minister of Defense. Things at this time quickly began to heat up. Germany had captured Holland and Belgium and trapped the French army into surrendering. Although countries were collapsing around Churchill, he remained strong and determined. At a speech to the House of Commons, he gave a rallying cry to the whole nation. When Churchill spoke the nation listened. Small ships and little boats from all over were sent to help in the rescuing of 345,000 British and French soldiers, from the Dunkirk beaches. Churchill was forced to bring his thoughts from France to his own country. He now realized what would happen next.
The Battle of France is over. I expect that the Battle of Britain is about to begin. 18
Britain was now ready to face the German forces, but not without the help of the United States. At this time the USA was called on to aid in the fight against Germany. Churchill had made the British worthy of an elite status. Churchill brought the British this far, and to the end of the war.
In 1945 World War Two ended. Churchill had reached the age of seventy and was respected and revered by the whole nation. Even though the views of Churchill remained high, his political success was decreasing. He lost his seat as Prime Minister but was still a member of Parliament. AS time progressed the need for Churchill to step down was evident. He had suffered a stroke and the doctors advised him to rest. Churchill resigned from his last political office in 1964.19
In 1963 a great honor was bestowed on Churchill. He was made an honorary citizen of the United States.20 This pleased Churchill very much and since his mother was American it was considered appropriate. Churchill passed the age of 90 and on January 24th 1965 his strength was finally diminished. His death signified the passing of a great man. Winston Churchill was given a State Funeral, an honor bestowed on few outside the Royal Family. He was also given a twenty-one gun salute.21
Churchill achieved fame as a politician, war leader, historian, and writer. Although all of these were his accomplishments, the greatest was that of living a life of service to all mankind. He is history s child, and what he said and what he did will never die. 22
1) Bailey, Eva. Churchill Landsdowne Place, 1981.
4) Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill. http://tceplus.com/churchill.htm
1.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 6
2.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 8
3.) Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill Microsoft Encarta 98 Encyclopedia.
4.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 8
5.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 19
6.) Microsoft Encarta 98 Encyclopedia
7.) Microsoft Encarta 98 Encyclopedia
8.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 8
9.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg.10
10.) Donovan, Frank. Famous Twentieth Century Leaders (Dodd, Mead & Company. New York, 1964) Pg. 116
11.) Carter, Violet Bonham. Winston Churchill: An Intimate Portrait. Harcourt, Brace & World INC., New York, 1965.
12.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg.16
13.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 19
14.) Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill. http://tceplus.com/churchill.htm
15.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 26
16.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 31
17.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 40
18.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 43 Churchill talking about what to come in the future
19.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 62
20.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 62
21.) Microsoft Encarta 98 Encyclopedia
22.) Bailey, Eva, Churchill ( Landsdowne Place, 1981.)Pg. 65 General de Gaulle, on the death of Churchill.