Churchill Wanted Dead or Alive

Churchill Wanted Dead or Alive

Churchill Wanted Dead or Alive

Churchill Wanted Dead or Alive

Excerpt

Winston Churchill’s heroic escapades during the Anglo-Boer War propelled him overnight onto the international stage. In 1994 I went to South Africa to research what I thought would be two or three chapters of a book I intended to write about my grandfather from 1895 to 1908. I chose to go there partly because I loved the country and already had great friends there, but mainly because that was the period of Churchill’s life which interested me most.

Retracing his footsteps through South Africa during what was unquestionably the greatest adventure of his life was the most exciting journey I have ever made, even though there was no danger for me of death or capture – I only risked being killed by the kindness and hospitality of new friends eager to help me in my voyage of discovery.

Although I knew there would be some people in South Africa with stories to tell, I expected my research to be mostly geographical. But during a television interview shortly after my arrival I appealed for anyone whose parents or grandparents had been involved in any way with Churchill during his time in South Africa to come forward. The response was incredible. Before the programme had even finished the telephone started to ring, the fax machine poured out constant messages, and letters arrived by every post. Encouraged by this, and with the cooperation of the South African media, I spread my request all around the country, on television, radio and in the newspapers. I found myself swamped with information, and it was at this point that I realised I was researching not just a chapter or two, but a whole book.

The expedition soon became a family pilgrimage as, with my husband and our two young children, I travelled from place to place to check out information and meet those who had contacted me.

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.