With colleagues I discussed which of young Winston’s early war books was derisively called, “A Subaltern’s Advice to Generals.” This was a popular wisecrack after his early works had the temerity to propose British military strategy in India, Sudan and South Africa. Churchill was in his mid-twenties at the time—but not reticent to speak his mind. Nothing we didn’t know here….
Malakand Field Force?
Without consulting references, I thought the “advice” line involved The Story of the Malakand Field Force (Churchill’s first book, 1898). I was influenced by its last chapter, “The Riddle of the Frontier.” Plenty of advice there, though it is as much political as it is military.…
The Hillsdale College Churchill Project received a novel question: “After his 1908 African safari, Churchill’s taxidermists ask if he wants a ‘Rhinoceros Table.’ What in the world is a Rhinoceros Table?”
Rhinoceros Table, anyone?The reference is in The Churchill Documents, vol. 4, Minister of the Crown, 1907-1911 (2007), page 753:The rare second (paper wrappers) edition, 1910.
Rowland Ward Ltd., 167 Piccadilly, to WSC, 4 March 1908
Sir, In accordance with instructions given on your behalf by Lieutenant Colonel Gordon Wilson, we have in hand the following: MODELLED HEADS 1 Rhinoceros, 1 Zebra, 1 Warthog, 1 Wildebeest, 1 Coke’s Hartebeest, 1 Grant’s Gazelle, 1 Thomson’s Gazelle and the dressing of three Zebra skins, at a total cost of £32.…
Q. “Rab” Butler, Churchill’s Minister of Education (1941-45) and Chancellor of the Exchequer (1951-55), recalled that Churchill once told him he was doing less for the war effort than Churchill’s grey cat Nelson, who saved fuel and power by acting as a Prime Ministerial hot-water bottle. True?