Month: November 2010

Christmas, 1941

Christmas, 1941

In the Dark Streets Shineth: A 1941 Christ­mas Eve Sto­ry, by David McCul­lough. Shad­ow Moun­tain Books, 56 pages, illus. with DVD, $10.99.

The not­ed biog­ra­ph­er of Har­ry Tru­man and John Adams cre­at­ed this book for the 2010 Christ­mas sea­son. It com­pris­es an essay by the author, the 1941 radio address­es by Pres­i­dent Roo­sevelt and Prime Min­is­ter Churchill (then in Wash­ing­ton) at the light­ing of the White House Christ­mas tree; a pho­to col­lec­tion of Amer­i­cans dur­ing World War II; and a DVD of McCullough’s pre­sen­ta­tion of the sto­ry at the Mor­mon Taber­na­cle Choir’s 2009 Christ­mas con­cert, includ­ing the choir’s per­for­mances of “O Lit­tle Town of Beth­le­hem” and “I’ll Be Home for Christ­mas.”

Crit­ics seem unde­cid­ed on whether the book is a nar­ci­sis­stic exer­cise by some­one who enjoys hear­ing his own voice or a nos­tal­gia piece.…

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German Resistance: “Driven only by the restlessness of their conscience.”

German Resistance: “Driven only by the restlessness of their conscience.”

Churchill is quot­ed in a Ger­man par­lia­men­tary jour­nal as hav­ing writ­ten of the Ger­man resisters to Hitler: “These men fought with­out help from with­in or with­out, dri­ven only by the rest­less­ness of their con­science.  As long as they lived they were invis­i­ble and unrecog­nis­able to us… but in their death, the resis­tance became visible…their deeds and sac­ri­fices are the foun­da­tion of the recon­struc­tion.” [Hans-Adolf Jacob­sen, Ger­mans Against Hitler, 3rd ed., Berto-Ver­lag, Bonn, 1960; Bar­ry Sul­li­van, Thresh­olds of Peace, 1979].  But I can­not find the orig­i­nal doc­u­ment and some­what doubt its authen­tic­i­ty.  Can you  shed any light?  —N.B., Eng­land

I am work­ing on a les­son plan for a uni­ver­si­ty sem­i­nar at Munich Uni­ver­si­ty and heard in a film that WSC spoke in the Com­mons in 1946 of the deaths of Hans and Sophie Scholl of the Munich resis­tance group “Weiss Rose.” Does this remark exist and how can I find it?…

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Churchill’s Escape from the Boers, 1899

Churchill’s Escape from the Boers, 1899

Please can you com­ment on, the “Dutch­man, Bur­gen­er by name,” men­tioned by Churchill in his account of his escape from the Boers in his auto­bi­og­ra­phy, My Ear­ly Life? Is he one and the same per­son as the Charles Burn­ham men­tioned by Sir Mar­tin Gilbert in Churchill: A Life? Per­haps the sur­name was changed to pro­tect Mr Burnham`s posi­tion in South Africa, even though three decades had elapsed by the pub­li­ca­tion of My Ear­ly Life? It seems cer­tain that Churchill knew of Charles Burn­ham and the role that he had played: the lat­ter had writ­ten to him in 1908 (Vol.

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