Charting Churchill: The Long Library, Blenheim Palace

Long Library, Blenheim Palace, Woodstock 2014 by Leslie Hossack

Long Library, Blenheim Palace, Woodstock 2014

© Leslie Hossack

In 1874, Winston Churchill was born at Blenheim, one of Britain’s greatest palaces. The Long Library, measuring over 55 metres from end to end, was once described as the longest room in England. As a boy, Churchill spent many holidays visiting his grandparents at Blenheim where he spent countless hours playing indoors and out with his younger brother Jack and their cousins. Perhaps his love of reading and writing started in the room shown above. Throughout his long life, Churchill composed hundreds of newspaper articles, magazine features, political speeches, public lectures, and full-length books, some of several volumes.

In the period following World War II, Churchill published The Dawn of Liberation (1945), Victory (1946), War Speeches (1940-45, 1946), Secret Session Speeches (1946), The Second World War, 6 volumes (1948-53), The Sinews of Peace (1948), Painting as a Pastime (1948), Europe Unite (1950), In the Balance (1951), The War Speeches, 3 volumes (1951-52), and Stemming the Tide: Speeches (1953.) That same year, on December 10th 1953, Sir Winston Churchill was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature “for his mastery of historical and biographical description as well as for brilliant oratory in defending exalted human values.” Due to ill health, Churchill was unable to attend the Nobel Banquet at the City Hall in Stockholm, and his speech was read by Lady Churchill.

The image featured above is part of the limited edition collector’s portfolio created by Leslie Hossack to mark the 50th anniversary of the death of Sir Winston Churchill. She presents locations that chart Churchill’s personal and political life, from his birth at Blenheim Palace in 1874 until his death in London in 1965. THE CHURCHILL PHOTOGRAPHS are part of Hossack’s larger body of work that explores Nazi architecture in Berlin, Stalinist structures in Moscow, contested sites in Jerusalem, a Cold War bunker in Ottawa, NATO’s Headquarter Camp in Kosovo, and buildings linked to the Japanese Canadian internment during World War II.

To view more photographs, please visit Leslie’s website.

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