THE STORY OF THE MALAKAND FIELD FORCE

1898 (Cohen A1) (Woods A1)

The Story of the Malakand Field Force was Winston Churchill’s first book, a chronicle of true-life military adventures drawn from newspaper dispatches filed by the then-22-year-old correspondent while serving on India’s Afghanistan-bordering Northwest Frontier under Major-General Sir Bindon Blood. Wrenching to read how little has changed in this region since Churchill’s time. The First Edition is easily distinguished by its apple-green cloth binding but Malakand is prized by collectors in almost any edition.

Read More »

THE RIVER WAR

1899 (Cohen A2) (Woods A2)

The River War was Winston Churchill’s second book, a brilliant history of British involvement in the Sudan and an account of the fierce campaign for its reconquest that Churchill himself participated in and, in many significant ways, disapproved of. Originally published in two large, lavish and, today, extremely rare volumes, all subsequent editions were significantly abridged.

Read More »

SAVROLA

1900 (Cohen A3) (Woods A3)

Savrola was Winston Churchill’s first and only novel; a statement of personal and political philosophy delivered as a  work of dystopian fiction with a twist of romance. U.S. publication preceded the British issue by roughly ten days, rendering the American first edition the true first.

Read More »

LONDON TO LADYSMITH VIA PRETORIA

1900 (Cohen A4) (Woods A4)

London to Ladysmith was the first of two Boer War volumes derived from Winston Churchill’s newspaper dispatches as a war correspondent in South Africa. It features a thrilling account of his escape from the Boers, an escape that would help launch young Churchill’s political career. The First English edition was published elaborately in fawn-colored cloth stamped with a striking cover illustration of the infamous armored train that Churchill was defending when he was captured. The American edition is an unadorned, though still handsome, red cloth binding with gilt lettering.

Read More »

Ian Hamilton's March

IAN HAMILTON'S MARCH

1900 (Cohen A8) (Woods A5)

Ian Hamilton’s March concluded Churchill’s Boer War narrative begun with London to Ladysmith. It features the triumphant liberation of his former-POW campmates in Pretoria, South Africa. The English and American editions were both bound in red cloth but the American edition is a match to the American edition of London to Ladysmith.

Read More »

MR. BRODRICK'S ARMY

1903 (Cohen A10) (Woods A6)

Mr. Brodrick’s Army is the holy grail of Churchill book collecting. A 102-page softcover collection of six Parliamentary speeches delivered by the then-29-year-old MP opposing plans for the expansion of England’s peacetime army, Brodrick was published by Arthur L. Humphreys, General Manager of Hatchard’s, the renowned London bookshop that still stands at number 187 Piccadilly. Hatchard’s had a long history even then as a publisher of pamphlets, both political and otherwise. Humphreys and Hatchard’s would go on to issue Churchill’s 1905 speech compendium, For Free Trade, in an identical format to Brodrick, bound in unprepossessing printed red wraps that did not age well. The surviving handful of copies (as few as 20 accounted for, in each instance) today constitute the stuff of collectors’ dreams.

Read More »

LORD RANDOLPH CHURCHILL

LORD RANDOLPH CHURCHILL

1906 (Cohen A17) (Woods A8)

Lord Randolph Churchill was Winston Churchill’s first work of biography and an impassioned two-volume defense of his maligned father’s posthumous reputation. It was subsequently issued in an unabridged one-volume edition and is a bulwark of any Churchill collection.

Read More »

For Free Trade

FOR FREE TRADE

1906 (Cohen A18) (Woods A9)

For Free Trade has always been, in tandem with Mr. Brodrick’s Army,  the holy grail of Churchill book collecting. A small, 136-page, softcover collection of nine speeches on the title subject delivered by Winston Churchill as a 31-year-old MP for Manchester, For Free Trade was published by Arthur L. Humphreys, General Manager of Hatchard’s, the renowned London bookshop that still stands at number 187 Piccadilly. Hatchard’s had a long history even then as a publisher of pamphlets, both political and otherwise, including Churchill’s earlier 1903 speech compendium, the aforementioned Mr. Brodrick’s Army. Identical in format to Brodrick and just as precious, For Free Trade was produced in very small numbers, bound in unprepossessing red printed wraps that did not age well. The surviving handful of copies (as few as 15-20 accounted for) today constitute the stuff of collectors’ dreams.

Read More »

MY AFRICAN JOURNEY

MY AFRICAN JOURNEY

1908 (Cohen A27) (Woods A12)

My African Journey is Winston Churchill’s travelogue account of his whirlwind tour of Britain’s East-Africa territories as Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies; his first official government office. It features eloquent and perceptive observations about Africa and much big game hunting with young Churchill as guide. The first English edition is particularly coveted for its handsome cover woodcut of the author posed beside a trophy rhinoceros. The more plainly-bound American edition, which utilized English first edition sheets, has no woodcut on its brownish-red buckram cover yet is a far rarer volume.

Read More »

LIBERALISM AND THE SOCIAL PROBLEM

LIBERALISM AND THE SOCIAL PROBLEM

1909 (Cohen A29) (Woods A15)

Liberalism and the Social Problem was Winston Churchill’s first widely-published hardcover collection of political speeches, an expression of “radical” liberal views that were quite advanced for his time, prefiguring the modern social saftey net that Churchill and David Lloyd George would soon set in motion. Though the burgundy clothbound English edition was handsomely produced, with Churchill’s signature in gilt across the front board, the American edition, similarly bound but without the gilt signature, is rarer. However, it is increasingly scarce in either edition.

Read More »

THE PEOPLE'S RIGHTS

THE PEOPLE'S RIGHTS

1910 (Cohen A31) (Woods A16)

The People’s Rights collects six Churchill speeches from the 1910 General Election rebuking the Tories for their rejection of “The People’s Budget.” Originally published in simultaneous hard and softcover editions, the book is now rarely encountered in either format. In fact, this is probably the third rarest Churchill book after Mr. Brodrick’s Army and For Free Trade. It was reprinted twice in the 1970s, though even these reprints are scarce today.

Read More »

THE WORLD CRISIS

THE WORLD CRISIS

1923-1931 (Cohen A69) (Woods A31)

The World Crisis is Churchill’s highly subjective history of the First World War. Comprising five volumes (in six books) written over eight years, the initial titles were first published in the U.S. (by a matter of days), making the American edition the true first edition. Volume I (1911-1914) and Volume II (1915) were published in 1923. Volume III (1916-1918 ) was published in two parts in 1927 (hence the five/in six volumes ultimate format). Volume IV (The Aftermath 1918-1928) was published in 1929; and Volume V (The Unknown War/The Eastern Front) in 1931. A one-volume abridgment by the author was soon issued. Most subsequent re-issues have been incomplete, abridged, or otherwise condensed versions of the original text.

Read More »

My Early Life

MY EARLY LIFE

1930 (Cohen A91) (Woods A37)

My Early Life is the only volume of personal memoirs that Churchill ever wrote. It is, arguably, his most entertaining book and an excellent entry point into his writing; a vivacious memoir of youth and wayward school boyhood. Published in the U.S. under the title A Roving Commission, the book has been endlessly re-issued in a variety of editions. True first editions, however, remain quite rare.

Read More »

India

INDIA

1931 (Cohen A92) (Woods A38)

India is a slender compendium of Churchill’s speeches about Gandhi and “Our Duty in India.” It was simultaneously published in especially handsome hardcover and softcover editions, both much prized today by collectors.

Read More »

THOUGHTS AND ADVENTURES

THOUGHTS AND ADVENTURES

1932 (Cohen A95) (Woods A39)

Thoughts and Adventures is a terrific anthology of Churchill essays and magazine articles from the 1920s and early 1930s on a wide variety of subjects, including, especially, his much-loved essay “Painting as a Pastime.” It was issued in the U.S. under the title Amid These Storms.

Read More »

MARLBOROUGH: HIS LIFE & TIMES

MARLBOROUGH: HIS LIFE & TIMES

1933-1938 (Cohen A97) (Woods A40)

Marlborough is Winston Churchill’s majestic biography of John Churchill, the first Duke of Marlborough; soldier, statesmen, hard-headed Churchillian ancestor. Initially published in England as a lush four-volume set and then as a somewhat less deluxe six-volume set in America, it was subsequently issued in an unabridged two-volume edition and a single-volume abridgment.

Read More »

GREAT CONTEMPORARIES

GREAT CONTEMPORARIES

1937 (Cohen A105) (Woods A43)

Great Contemporaries comprises twenty-one penetrating profiles of political and literary luminaries. An utter delight to read, beautifully written and brutally opinionated (Hitler comes off just a bit better than George Bernard Shaw), the ensuing “Revised” edition (and most future reprints) added four new profiles: Lord Fisher, Charles Stewart Parnell, Lord Baden-Powell and President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Read More »

ARMS AND THE COVENANT

ARMS AND THE COVENANT

1938 (Cohen A107) (Woods A44)

Arms and the Covenant captures Churchill’s initial alarms against Hitler and the Nazis in forty-one prophetic pre-war speeches delivered from 1936-1938, edited by his son Randolph. Published in the U.S. under the title While England Slept, the book, according to FDR, sat on his White House nightstand in 1938.

Read More »

STEP BY STEP 1936-1939

STEP BY STEP 1936-1939

1939 (Cohen A111) (Woods A45)

Step by Step is a chilling anthology of Churchill’s prescient newspaper pieces about the rising Nazi threat, written for the Evening Standard and Daily Telegraph, commencing in 1936 with Hitler’s reoccupation of the Rhineland, through the final months before the declaration of war in 1939.

Read More »

THE WAR SPEECHES

1941-1946 (Cohen A142-A227) (Woods A66-A114)

The War Speeches of Winston Churchill were first preserved in seven individual speech compilation volumes, collected and published yearly in the U.K. and in the U.S., beginning in 1941, under the following titles: Into Battle (1938-1940 speeches; published in the U.S. as Blood, Sweat and Tears), The Unrelenting Struggle (1940-1941), The End of the Beginning (1942), Onwards to Victory (1943), The Dawn of Liberation (1944), Victory (1945), and Secret Session Speeches (Various Dates). Unlike the English editions, which were all published by one publisher (Cassell), the American series was initiated by G.P. Putnam with Blood, Sweat and Tears, then carried on by Little, Brown, up till the final volume, Secret Session Speeches, which was published by Simon and Schuster.

Read More »

THE SECOND WORLD WAR

THE SECOND WORLD WAR

1948-53 (Cohen A240) (Woods A123)

The Second World War, also known as Winston Churchill’s War Memoirs, won Churchill  the Nobel Prize for literature in 1953. Published in six volumes that appeared over five years, the books each came out first in the U.S. The ensuing English editions contained numerous corrections and even a few additional maps. The English edition is therefore considered to be more definitive, though today the American edition may be rarer. The set was simultaneously published by the Book-of-the-Month-Club, printed on the same presses as the first editions, and thus can easily be confused with them.

Read More »

THE POST-WAR SPEECHES

THE POST-WAR SPEECHES

1948-1961 (Cohen A241-A273) (Woods A124-A142)

The Postwar Speeches of Winston Churchill were published beginning  in 1948 with The Sinews of Peace, which collected late-1945-1946 speeches, including Churchill’s historic Fulton, Missouri “Iron Curtain” speech. This was followed by Europe Unite in 1950 (1947-1948 speeches), In the Balance in 1951 (1949-1950 speeches), Stemming the Tide in 1953 (1951-1952 speeches), and The Unwritten Alliance in 1961 (1953-1959 speeches). The Unwritten Alliance appeared in England only and is thus the rarest of the postwar speech volumes.

Read More »

PAINTING AS A PASTIME

PAINTING AS A PASTIME

1948 (Cohen A242) (Woods A125)

Painting as a Pastime is Winston Churchill’s marvelous essay celebrating his favorite hobby. It first appeared in the Strand magazine over two issues in December 1921 and January 1922. It was then anthologized in Churchill’s 1932 book, Thoughts and Adventures, before being published on its own as this delightful little volume, which has since been endlessly re-issued in a variety of English and American editions.

Read More »

A HISTORY OF THE ENGLISH-SPEAKING PEOPLES

A HISTORY OF THE ENGLISH-SPEAKING PEOPLES

1956-1958 (Cohen A267) (Woods A138)

A History of the English-Speaking Peoples was Winston Churchill’s last great work; a sweeping, four-volume history of England, her colonies, and the language that Churchill so venerated and ennobled in his own writings. Published nearly twenty years after Churchill composed his first draft in the late-1930s, the books were released after the war simultaneously in Britain, the U.S., and Canada over a period of three years. The original English edition was handsomely printed, the American and Canadian editions less so. Subsequent re-issues and abridgments abound.

Read More »

FRONTIERS AND WARS

FRONTIERS AND WARS

1962 (Cohen A274) (ICS A142/1)

Frontiers and Wars is a one-volume abridgment of Churchill’s first four books (Malakand, The River War, London to Ladysmith, and Ian Hamilton’s March), which were all derived from his newspaper dispatches covering various colonial wars. Although Frontiers and Wars appeared in Churchill’s lifetime, he had nothing to do with its preparation, nor did it contain new material, though it is, in and of itself, a new text and a fascinating distillation.

Read More »

YOUNG WINSTON'S WARS

1972 (Cohen A282) (Woods A143)

Young Winston’s Wars constitutes a thorough documentation of Winston Churchill the war correspondent, reprinting the texts of his original newspaper dispatches from colonial wars in India, the Sudan and South Africa, 1897-1900.

Read More »

IF I LIVED MY LIFE AGAIN

1974 (Cohen A283) (ICS A144)

If I Lived My Life Again is a heavily abridged but nevertheless well-chosen compilation of Churchill’s writings and speeches assembled by journalist Jack Fishman, who wrote the first biography of Churchill’s wife, My Darling Clementine, published in 1963.

Read More »

THE DREAM & THE CHARTWELL BULLETINS

1987-1989 (Cohen A288/291) (Woods A147/148)

Two contemporary publications by the International Churchill Society preserved between covers for the first time a pair of fascinating Churchill obscurities.

The Dream was issued leatherbound in book form by the International Churchill Society in 1987. It is an ethereal short story — one of Winston Churchill’s few works of fiction —  first published in The Daily Telegraph in 1966. In The Dream the ghost of his father, Randolph, visits Churchill in 1947. The son reviews for his father all that has happened to the world since Randolph Churchill died in 1895 without ever revealing the great role that he himself played in these events.

The Chartwell Bulletins were issued as a handsome paberback by the International Churchill Society in 1989, collected and edited by Churchill’s official biographer, Sir Martin Gilbert. They are a lovely curiousity: twelve unexpectedly tender letters written by Winston Churchill to his wife Clementine during her absence from Chartwell on a South Seas voyage between January and April 1935.

Read More »

We are also pleased to share
A Connoisseur’s Guide to the Books of Sir Winston Churchill by the eminent Churchill bibliophile Richard M. Langworth.

All thirty-seven books published by Winston Churchill during his lifetime are detailed with bibliographic particulars for identifying all editions, issues, and impressions.

A deeper dive for anyone so inclined.

Just click HERE.