Blog: Sir Martin's writing

Churchill's first wartime broadcast on 1st October 1939

Winston Churchill, The Wilderness Years

… in a fifteen minute broadcast to the United States on 8 August 1939, a broadcast spiced with irony, Churchill began: “Holiday time, ladies and gentlemen! Holiday time, my friends across the Atlantic! Holiday time, when the summer calls the toilers of all countries for an all too brief spell

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“Let us take the rough with the smooth”

Throughout his long life, Winston Churchill understood the power of words. In public speeches, in published books, in newspaper and magazine articles, he expressed his feelings and laid out his vision for the future. His descriptions of the wars that he fought in between 1897 and 1900 were read with

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From Esther Gilbert

In 1962 Sir Martin spent the summer driving through the United States, returning in 1965 as a visiting scholar at the University of South Carolina. It was during these early visits that he developed a love for American history and geography in all their aspects. His Routledge Atlas of American History

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“Last Testament” From Esther Gilbert

In 2006, Martin, who had been appointed a Distinguished Fellow at Hillsdale College in Michigan, was there speaking on “What Did Democracy Mean to Winston Churchill”.  After his lecture, I made my way up to him. The moment he spotted me, he called out to me and turned to a gentleman standing next

German soldiers invading Poland in 1939

POLAND 1939

©Martin Gilbert, 2009 First Published in The Observer There can have been few more skilful cover-ups in British history than the story of the British Government’s efforts to force the Poles to give up territory to Germany on the very eve of the Second World War. When Neville Chamberlain, who

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Sir Martin pays tribute to Major and Mrs Holt

Foreword to Major & Mrs Holt’s Battlefield Guide to the Somme 2008 edition by Sir Martin Gilbert,17 December 2007 Reprinted by kind permission of Major & Mrs Holt Major and Mrs Holt continue to do an important service to everyone interested in the battlefields of the First and Second World

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Beware of Oysters in June

Oysters were the secret weapon with which Hitler might have triumphed on D-Day. Not the succulent variety to be eaten on the half-shell, but a devastating mine — code-named Oyster by the Allies — that could not be sunk: an unscupperable mine that revealed a German technology far more advanced

Great-grandson Randolph Churchill with Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat at the unveiling of an Oscar Nemon bronze bust of Winston Churchill at Mishkenot Sha'ananim, Jerusalem, 4 November 2012; Photograph:  Abir Sultan, EPA

Winston Churchill and the foundation of Israel

For the first half of this century, during one of the longest active political careers in this country, Winston Churchill was interested and sympathetic to Zionism. Hating tyranny in all its forms, he had reacted strongly against the Tzarist pogroms in the first years of the century and always understood

26 April 1981, Hon .D.Litt. Westminster College, Fulton, Missouri

THE ORIGINS OF THE ‘IRON CURTAIN’ SPEECH

The First Crosby Kemper Lecture, delivered by Sir Martin Gilbert at the Winston Churchill Memorial, Westminster College, Fulton, Missouri , April 26, 1981. President Saunders, ladies and gentlemen, I am deeply honoured to be invited here to Westminster College to talk at the site of Churchill’s famous ‘Iron Curtain Speech,’ and

Randolph Churchill, Stour, East Bergholt, February 1965

“The Beast of Bergholt”

Picture: Randolph Churchill, Stour, East Bergholt, February 1965 My employment with Randolph Churchill began in October 1962, on my twenty-sixth birthday. Given Randolph’s reputation for drink and anger, my friends and I assumed that my engagement would be of short duration. I was still there, as part of his team