Haute Vitrine

PHOTOGRAPHS by LESLIE HOSSACK

Tag: Harrow

Charting Churchill: Speech Room at Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill

Speech Room, Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill 2014 by Leslie Hossack

Speech Room, Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill 2014

© Leslie Hossack

Winston Churchill left Harrow School in December 1892. While there, he displayed evidence of the attributes and interests that would shape him as an adult. He loved reading history and particularly enjoyed lessons about battles; he studied the English language extensively and developed an enduring passion for words; he sought opportunities to learn about the army and the military.

The Speech Room shown above was completed in 1877. Here Winston would have attended school assemblies, plays, concerts, debates and lectures. He particularly enjoyed presentations by special guests. He was very excited about a lecture by Colonel Gouraud who demonstrated a new invention called the phonograph. Churchill remained intellectually curious about both military and communication technology throughout his life.

The photograph featured here shows the Speech Room in the process of being set up as an Elizabethan theatre. A Shakespearean play has been produced at Harrow almost every year since 1941. Winston developed an abiding interest in Shakespeare as a schoolboy and he frequently quoted from his work later in life.

Another annual event in the Speech Room is a concert called the Churchill Songs. The first one occurred in 1940 when Prime Minister Winston Churchill returned to hear the Harrow Songs that he loved. With the exception of four occasions, Churchill attended this event every year for the rest of his life. Harrow School was indeed his Alma Mater.

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.  lesliehossack.com

Charting Churchill: Head Master’s House, Harrow School

Head Master's House, Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill 2014 by Leslie Hossack

Head Master’s House, Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill 2014

© Leslie Hossack

In 1888, Winston Spencer-Churchill, age 13, entered Harrow School where he studied until 1892, leaving at the age of 18. He won prizes for history, for reciting 1200 lines of poetry, and for a poem he wrote; he took part in debates and joined the Rifle Corps; he competed in swim meets and won the Public Schools’ Fencing Championship; he tobogganed and skated on the lake; he rode his bicycle, collected stamps and shot rounds on the rifle range; he took part in mock battles and signed up for drawing lessons; he played the cello and enjoyed singing; he was reported at various times for unpunctuality, slovenliness, cutting school, disobedience and impertinence; he suffered several illnesses and missed his parents; he collected autographs and sold his own parents’ autographs; he attended lectures by many famous visitors; he took the special Army Class for boys intending to go on to Woolwich or Sandhurst; and in his final term, beginning in September 1892, Winston shared his room at Harrow with his brother Jack.

The photograph above shows the Head Master’s House, one of many at Harrow. Pupils board in one of the houses and it becomes the focus of their school life. Winston was first assigned to Garlands House and then moved to Head Master’s House in May 1889.

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.  lesliehossack.com

Charting Churchill: Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill

Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill, 2014 by Leslie Hossack

Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill, 2014

© Leslie Hossack

Before entering Harrow, Winston Churchill attended two other schools. Just before his eighth birthday, in November 1882, Winston’s parents sent him off to St. George’s School in Ascot. Here flogging with the birch was common. In his book My Early Years, Churchill wrote: “How I hated this school, and what a life of anxiety I lived there for more than two years.”

In 1884, Winston was enrolled in the Misses Thomson’s School in Sussex. Of that experience he wrote: “At this school I was allowed to learn things which interested me: French, History, lots of Poetry by heart, and above all Riding and Swimming. The impression of those years makes a pleasant picture in my mind, in strong contrast to my earlier schoolday memories.”

On April 17th 1888, after a traumatic struggle with the entrance examination, Winston was registered at Harrow as Winston Spencer-Churchill. He was now 13 years old and he matured greatly during his years at Harrow. However, he continued to crave the company, attention and approval of his parents. Winston’s father, Lord Randolph, had attended Eton like generations of Marlborough men before him, and he made little effort to visit his son at Harrow.

The photograph above shows the original 1615 Form Room (now known as the Fourth Form Room) on the left, and the 1820 Speech Room addition on the right. Upon leaving the school, students traditionally carve their names on the form room wall, and one of the surviving names is Winston 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.  lesliehossack.com