Month: January 2016

Last Try to Avoid Hell, 1914

Last Try to Avoid Hell, 1914

“Sav­ing the Nations from Hell”: The “King­ly Con­fer­ence,” 1914 (Excerpt)

(Read more at Hills­dale Col­lege Churchill Project)

Churchill’s faith in per­son­al diplomacy—solving intractable prob­lems by meet­ings at the high­est level—was famous­ly expressed dur­ing World War II.

Less wide­ly known is Churchill’s 1914 pro­pos­al for a con­fer­ence of heads of state (includ­ing, it seems, French Pres­i­dent Ray­mond Poin­caré) in an effort to head-off World War I. The scheme failed, but not for Churchill’s lack of try­ing.

There is lit­tle on Churchill’s “king­ly con­fer­ence” in the lit­er­a­ture. There is no ref­er­ence in Churchill’s The World Cri­sis, Asquith’s mem­oirs, or biogra­phies by Man­ches­ter, Jenk­ins, Rose, Charm­ley and Birken­head, though Sir Mar­tin Gilbert includes in the offi­cial biog­ra­phy an excerpt from a cab­i­net mem­ber which records Churchill’s words in the cab­i­net of July 27th:

Churchill said we were now in a bet­ter than aver­age con­di­tion, & the fleet was at war strength….Churchill, how­ev­er, added: it was an appalling calami­ty for civilised nations to con­tem­plate & thought pos­si­bly sov­er­eigns could be brought togeth­er for sake of Peace.…

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Hillsdale’s Superb Churchill Biography

Hillsdale’s Superb Churchill Biography

Every­one who labors in “the Churchill vine­yard” knows of Hills­dale College’s Churchill Project. It is built around Win­ston S. Churchill, the “offi­cial biog­ra­phy.” (The term is a bit mis­lead­ing, since noth­ing was offi­cial or cen­sored.) Read more on this effort on the Project web­site.

Sir Mar­tin com­plet­ed the eighth and final bio­graph­ic vol­ume in 1988. Alas the accom­pa­ny­ing vol­umes of doc­u­ments (aka “Com­pan­ion Vol­umes”) stalled in the 1990s. They had reached only through 1941.

Pres­i­dent Lar­ry Arnn of Hills­dale Col­lege, once Gilbert’s research assis­tant, arranged in 2006 to take on the job. He has pur­sued it with Churchillian deter­mi­na­tion.…

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Churchill Nonsense, Parts #1462-64

Churchill Nonsense, Parts #1462-64

“Ama­zone.” She was nev­er Churchill’s yacht and he nev­er owned one in his life. (Fox News)

Non­sense sto­ries. The Irish nov­el­ist George Moore orig­i­nat­ed the tale that Sir Winston’s moth­er Jen­nie, Lady Ran­dolph Churchill, slept with 200 men. Assum­ing she did so, say, between ages 20 and 60, she aver­aged five per year, a ten-week aver­age affair (if she had them one at a time, with a cou­ple days’ break in between). Which is a lot of lovers to main­tain, giv­en the state of Vic­to­ri­an and Edwar­dian loco­mo­tion.

How­ev­er ridicu­lous, the claim stuck, and is reg­u­lar­ly trot­ted out and embell­ished on a medi­um poor Jen­nie nev­er antic­i­pat­ed: the World Wide Web.…

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