The Library of CongressExhibitionsChurchill Exhibition
Churchill and the Great Republic
Interactive Exhibition About the Exhibition Read More About It Acknowledgements Text Version
INTRODUCTION
TIMELINE
THEMES
  Forebears and Family
Warrior for Empire
Visits to America
American Presidents
The Communicator
The Politician
World War II
Cold Warrior
The Long Sunset
OBJECTS
Image: Winston Churchill to Oswald Frewen, April 6, 1913
Winston Churchill to Oswald Frewen, April 6, 1913
In 1911 Prime Minister Herbert Asquith appointed Churchill First Lord of the Admiralty, the civilian head of Britain's Navy. This is a letter to his young cousin, a naval officer critical of British foreign policy. Churchill advises him "to preserve a calm and sober view of men and things, avoiding disproportionate judgments and extravagant language."
Object Details:
Typed letter. Moreton Frewen Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress (62)

Related Theme:
The Politician
Transcript:
April 6, 1913

My Dear Oswald,

Many thanks for your letter. I am always very glad to hear from you.

If you think the British Empire is likely to fall into a state of general decay, the best steps which you can take to prevent or delay that catastrophe are to concentrate your whole attention on your duty as a naval officer, to avoid allowing your mind to stray into political channels, particularly into Party political channels, and, above all, to preserve a calm and sober view of men and things, avoiding disproportionate judgments and extravagant language.

The question of whether the present policy of respecting the independence and integrity of Persia (which is not part of the British Empire) should give place to a direct Anglo Russian partition of the country is a very large one; and it ought not to be determined by local incidents of the kind you mention in your letter.

When are you expecting to come home? It would be very nice to see you again. I suppose you will not do more than 2 years in the Gulf, so perhaps you will still find me here on your return.

Yours affect.

W

[Handwritten by Oswald]:
May 5th
You will fancy from my letter to you that I was rude to Winston, but here is his--you will gather that I wasn't really! Nor in my reply to this one. But he is dead wrong & is wrecking the Empire, apparently shutting his eyes willfully to the (pact?). I had thought better of him.
Your letter of Apr. 13th about (or…?), just before going to chicken's, just come. Will answer it by next mail--this just going. But apparently you will be, bu now, in America. I am glad; you will like it. Best love.
The Library of CongressExhibitionsChurchill Exhibition