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Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill’s Funeral

Colour Footage of Sir Winston’s Funeral on 30th January, 1965.

“This wasn’t a funeral, it was a triumph.” – Lady Clementine Churchill, 30 January 1965.


Finest Hour 161, Winter 2013-14

Page 52

This day is called the feast of Crispian:
He that outlives this day and comes safe home,  
Will stand a tip-toe when the day is named,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day and see old age,  
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say “To-morrow is Saint Crispian”:  
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say “These wounds I had on Crispin’s day.”

Old men forget: yet all shall be forgot,
But he’ll remember with advantages  
What feats he did that day: then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words,
Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester,
Be in their flowing cups freshly remember’d.
This story shall the good man teach his son;  
And Crispin Crispian shall ne’er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,  
But we in it shall be remember’d;

We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he today that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile,  
This day shall gentle his condition:
And gentlemen in England now a-bed  
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks  
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin’s day.

Henry V, William Shakespeare

Action This Day – Winter 1888-89, 1913-14, 1938-39, 1963-64

Finest Hour 161, Winter 2013-14

Page 42

By Michael McMenamin


Winter 1888-89 • Age 14

“My holidays are utterly spoilt”

Winston spent Christmas at home with his brother Jack and their parents. Lord Randolph wrote to his mother, the Duchess of Marlborough, on 30 December that  “Of course the boys have made themselves ill with their Christmassing, & yesterday both were in bed…Jack is better this morning but Winston has a sore throat & some fever.” WSC’s son writes in the Official Biography that “this did not seem to have prevented Lord and Lady Randolph from going away.”

Winston kept his mother advised, writing on January 2nd:  “My throat is still painful & swelled – I get very hot in the night – & have very little appetite to speak of…How slow the time goes – I am horribly bored – & slightly irritable – no wonder my liver is still bad – Medicine 6 times a day is a horrible nuisance. I am looking forward to your return with ‘feelings, better imagined than described.’”
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Churchill Proceedings – Winston Churchill and Religion – “Let us Command the Moment to Remain” – Winston Churchill as Father and Family Man

Finest Hour 164, Special Edition, September 2014

Page 32

By Mary Soames


I am excited and honoured to be here at the first gathering of the North Texas Chapter, and if I’ve had anything to do with people wanting to come then I am indeed happy. You will realise how deeply moving it is for me to see how revered, so long after his death, is my father’s memory, which the International Churchill Society does so much to keep fresh and green.

It makes me proud that you have all come here today to meet me. And as you are setting out on your way, may I venture to say to you what I hope the International Churchill Society does? It does a lot of things, of course—but I hope especially it will continue to take a particular care and pride in keeping the record straight.

There are a lot of stories told about famous people, and I find that as time goes on it is rather like the lens of a camera: Virtues and faults come out of focus. Inaccurate statements said in some paper or book are copied lightheartedly, and reproduce themselves all over the place. Few people take the trouble to go back to the source and find out if that really was what happened. I like to hope that the Society will, above all the other things, regard itself as the guardian of the true picture and try always to bring that camera back into true focus.
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Churchill Proceedings – Winston Churchill and Religion – A Comfortable Relationship with the Almighty

Finest Hour 163

Page 52

By Andrew Roberts


“If you are the recipient of a message which cheers your heart and fortifies your soul, which promises you reunion with those you have loved in a world of larger opportunities and wider sympathies, why should you worry about the shape or colour of the travel-stained envelope; whether it is duly stamped, whether the date on the postcard is right or wrong?…I adopted quite early in life a system of believing whatever I wanted to believe, while at the same time leaving reason to pursue unfettered whatever paths she was capable of treading.” —WSC

I could hardly be called a pillar of the Church,” Winston Churchill once famously remarked, “I am more in the nature of a buttress, for I support it from the outside.”1 The reasons why our greatest 20th century prime minister—indeed perhaps along with Elizabeth I our greatest ever national leader— was not a Christian are rather bizarre. They include a sectarian nursemaid, a long-forgotten Victorian explorer, and the officers’ mess of the 4th Hussars at Bangalore, India.
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Finest Hour 163, Summer 2014

Page 41

“Millions of men and women are in the market, all eager to supplement the rewards of energetic toil by ‘easy money.’ From every part of its enormous territories the American public follows the game. Horseracing, baseball, football, every form of sport or gambling cedes its place to a casino whose amplitude and splendours make Monte Carlo the meanest midget in Lilliput.”
—“What I Saw and Heard in America,” 1929

“Broadly speaking, human beings may be divided into three classes: those who are toiled to death, those who are worried to death, and those who are bored to death. It is no use offering the manual labourer, tired out with a hard week’s sweat and effort, the chance of playing a game of football or baseball on Saturday afternoon.”
—“Hobbies,” in Thoughts and Adventures, 1932
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History Detectives – If You Don’t Find Baseball, Baseball Will Find You – Eminent Churchillians on and off the Ball Field

Finest Hour 163, Summer 2014

Page 40

By Christopher Schwarz

It’s baseball season in America, but you will be wondering what it has to do with Sir Winston. Well, enough for this Churchillian fan of the “National Pastime” (which has been sadly eclipsed nowadays by football—just another of those team games played against a clock).

How is it that the son of Jennie Jerome, a woman born in Brooklyn, at the epicenter of early professional baseball, just three miles from the future home of the fabled Brooklyn Dodgers, never attended a Major League baseball game? Despite Winston Churchill’s deep pride in his American roots, he never showed up at a ballpark during his sixteen trips to his mother’s land. The oft-quoted cultural historian Jacques Barzun would consider it a colossal missed opportunity. As he put it, “whoever wants to know the heart and mind of America had better learn baseball, the rules and reality of the game.”

Barzun’s advice doesn’t apply as much now as it once did, but during Churchill’s lifetime baseball was a crucial part of American culture. What might he have learned about America at the ballpark? He enjoyed writing and talking about “what if?” scenarios. Baseball is full of them. What if he saw a game? Would people have heard him bellowing “dog and a beer” to a roving vendor? Would his understanding of America have increased? Would he have enjoyed sitting in the open air, smoking a cigar—that sort of thing was allowed back then—amid the raucous, colorful crowd? But could a man famously averse to boredom sit through nine innings?
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Finest Hour 163, Summer 2014

Page 05

Quotation of the Season

The danger which threaten the tranquillity of the modern world come not from those powers that have become interdependent upon others…. They come from those powers which are more or less aloof from the general intercourse of mankind….” —WSC, HOUSE OF COMMONS, 8 MARCH 1905

Denmark Remembers

BLADON, MAY 4TH— In the annual Holger Danske Clubben ceremony, Claus Grube, Danish Ambassador to Britain, laid a wreath in commemoration of the Danish Resistance and in thanks to Winston Churchill for Denmark’s liberation. The short service, organised and attended by local British Legion groups, gave thanks for “all those who served in the Resistance and other Forces…for the life and memory of Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill, who led the free world in the fight for peace during the Second World War.”

Getting to Chartwell

WESTERHAM, MARCH 20TH— Chartwell opened today and through November 2nd, although the studio, exhibition room, gardens and estate are open throughout the year. Opening times are Wednesday through Sunday from 11am to 5pm, with the last house admission at 4:15 pm. Entry fees (house and gardens) are £12.50 adults, £6.25 children, £31.25 family. Visitors may opt for a small premium, “Gift Aid on Entry,” which is a donation. For the gardens and studio only, entry is £6.25 adults, £3.10 children and £15.60 family. There are no guided tours (although guides are present to help), but there is a reduced group rate of £10.70 adults for house and gardens. Telephone (01732) 868381.

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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.