A thought for National Winston Churchill Day:
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
President Kennedy, on April 9, 1963, signed into law a bill making Churchill — the soldier, author, and indefatigable British Prime Minister — an honorary citizen of the United States. It wasn’t his birthday, or even the day of his death (he was still very much alive), but the day did have military significance for us all. Sir Winston, knighted by the Queen for his wartime service to England, is credited with unifying the British people during the darkest days of World War II.
To commemorate Winston Churchill Day on April 9 we have great facts and pithy quotes to help you “keep calm and carry on.”
History of National Winston Churchill Day
There’s much to be said about the half-American, all-grit English treasure that is Winston Churchill. Born to a wealthy American mother and grandson to a Duke, Churchill was born into greatness. His early years, however, proved to be difficult, struggling with academia and his studies. His teacher’s called him “unpunctual and careless.” However, as he grew older, Churchill excelled in history and began writing poetry that was published in school magazines. After repeated insisting by his father, Churchill began preparation for a military career and graduated from the Royal Military Academy in 1894. In his early 20s from 1895 to 1900, Churchill saw combat in Cuba, India, Sudan, and South Africa, was mentioned in dispatches and recommended for a decoration, earned four campaign medals and the Spanish Order of Military Merit, wrote five books, established himself as a popular war correspondent and lecturer, gained international fame as an escaped prisoner of war, and was elected to a seat in Parliament, all before his twenty-sixth birthday. He would later lead Britain into victory during the second World War under his command as prime minister. As a celebrated politician, army officer, and writer, it’s hard to even determine which he had been the most impactful to. With a Nobel Prize in Literature, numerous medals of honor and an undeniable impact on the world we live in today, we choose this day to honor a man who didn’t just achieve greatness, he personified it.
National Winston Churchill Day timeline
Dies at age 90
Winston Churchill passes away in his London home nine days after suffering from a severe stroke.
Churchill receives a Nobel Prize for literature.
The Iron Curtain
Churchill delivers his "Iron Curtain" speech in Fulton, Missouri on March 5.
Churchill and science
Churchill is the first PM to insist scientists be given unprecedented access to the government and funding – resulting in the creation of the ground-breaking Bernard Lovell telescope.
On November 30, 1874, in Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire, England, Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill was born.
National Winston Churchill Day FAQs
Was Winston Churchill religious?
It is believed that Winston Churchill was Catholic, as were many British during his lifetime, but it is also said that he had a great admiration for Islam and far east religions.
Who took Winston Churchill’s place?
Winston Churchill was succeeded by Robert Anthony Eden, 1st Earl of Avon in 1955.
What age did Winston Churchill die?
Winston Churchill died at the age of 90 in 1965, nine days after suffering a severe stroke.
How to Observe National Winston Churchill Day
Binge-watch your favorite British TV shows
Love "The Great British Bake Off," or "Doctor Who"? If not, check out your favorite Brit clips on YouTube.
Find your inner Brit
No matter your obvious or not so obvious nationality, there are bound to be some Brits hiding in the proverbial woodpile of your genetic code. Ferret them out and show them off proudly.
Be Winston Churchill for the day
Dress up in a tux, a top hat, and a cane. Remember, always have a cigar handy and a ready list of quotes like: “Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak,” “Kites rise highest against the wind,” and “Never Never Never give in."
5 FUN FACTS ABOUT WINSTON CHURCHILL
Churchill almost didn’t go to military school
Third time’s the charm they say, and that’s how many times it took Churchill to pass the entrance exams for the Royal Military College at Sandhurst.
OMG my BFF Winston
The first use of the acronym OMG was in a letter to Winston Churchill.
He had a sensitive side
Churchill was regularly moved to tears in Parliament.
He was accident prone
Among many injuries, Churchill has suffered a concussion, a ruptured kidney, he nearly drowned in a Swiss lake, fell off several horses, dislocated his shoulder, and was hit by a car.
War makes you thirsty
He took 60 bottles of alcohol with him when he set out for the Boer War.
Why National Winston Churchill Day is Important
"Keep calm and carry on"
Churchill did not utter these famous words — but he's perhaps the person most linked to them. Today we use this slogan to promote a wide range of services and ideals.
He's the best of the British
From pop to royalty, Americans still seem to love all things England, including the fact that Churchill's an honorary citizen.
He reminds us that there’s some good in the world
Churchill set such a good example for all of us, not just the British people. Courageous, tenacious, erudite, and indomitable, he was everything we needed in a leader when fascism was taking over the world. He was an honorable statesman, orator, and leader who rallied the world to the cause of freedom. His strong will created the world we inherited, and that's worth remembering — and celebrating.
National Winston Churchill Day dates