Historical Figures

The Gunfighter and the Explorer

by Tom Clavin

151 years ago, a journey to Africa began that would garner international fame. In March, Henry Morton Stanley set out from Zanzibar to find a missing British explorer. The intrepid Stanley would always be remembered for this … Read the article

The Social History of Heiresses

by Laura Thompson

I came to Heiresses by accident, during the course of researching another book. As I scanned letters and diaries by the usual suspects—Nancy Mitford, Cecil Beaton, James Lees-Milne—in search of information, I found myself intrigued by certain … Read the article

Diana Churchill: Winston’s Special ‘Chum’

by Rachel Trethewey

As complex in their own way as their Mitford cousins, Winston and Clementine Churchill’s daughters each had a unique relationship with their famous father. Rachel Trethewey’s biography, The Churchill Sisters, tells their story. Read on for an excerpt.… Read the article

Unknown History: Churchill’s Iron Curtain

We teamed up with the Unknown History podcast on Quick and Dirty Tips to bring you their latest series based on Giles Milton’s Checkmate in Berlin. Episode 7 discusses Winston Churchill’s seminal 1946 speech in Westminster College, which gave not … Read the article

Discovering Smedley Butler

by Jonathan M. Katz

I first came across the name Smedley Butler in Haiti, shortly after I’d moved there to be the correspondent for the Associated Press in 2007. He was in a painting of three Marines in old-fashioned khaki … Read the article

The Churchill Sisters as Politicians

by Rachel Trethewey

Winston Churchill dreamed of establishing a political dynasty that passed from father to son, but as I researched his daughters’ lives, I realized that any one of the women would have made better politicians than their brother … Read the article

Agatha Christie and Disappearing Women

by Nina de Gramont

On the morning of December 3rd, 1926, Agatha Christie’s husband announced he wanted a divorce for the most heart-shattering of reasons: he planned to marry his mistress. Late that night, the thirty-six-year-old author’s Morris Cowley was … Read the article