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Finest Hour Extra The Speech Churchill Never Gave

The latest in our series of online specials is a tantalizing tale about what might have been. In the spring of 1951, Winston Churchill was all set to visit the United States in response to an invitation to speak at the University of Pennsylvania. Detailed plans were made. Clementine Churchill would accompany her husband and there would be a meeting with President Truman in Washington. A major address was anticipated and broadcast media prepared to cover every minute.

And then it was all called off. Monroe Trout, who as an undergraduate at the University of Pennsylvania had a ticket in hand for Churchill’s speech, was understandably disappointed. In a special article for the International Churchill Society written with the research assistance of Churchill Archives Director Allen Packwood, Trout tells the full story of how the invitation to Churchill came about and why—after extensive planning and anticipation—the whole thing had to be scrubbed. To find out the answer to this mystery, please CLICK HERE.

The rich abundance of material received for publication by the International Churchill Society exceeds the space we have in our quarterly print journal Finest Hour. Fortunately, we can still accommodate all stories that might not fit the theme of any issue of Finest Hour but which are certainly worthy of the reader’s attention by presenting them on our website under the heading “Finest Hour Extras.”

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The International Churchill Society (ICS), founded in 1968 shortly after Churchill's death, is the world’s preeminent member organisation dedicated to preserving the historic legacy of Sir Winston Churchill.

At a time when leadership is challenged at every turn, that legacy looms larger and remains more relevant than ever.