New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1932. First edition. Hardcover. This is the U.S. first edition, only printing, inscribed by Churchill to one of his secretaries. Churchill inked in black on the upper half-title page: “To | Anne Hipwell | from | Winston S. Churchill | 1947”. At the time this book was inscribed, Anne Hipwell was one of seven secretaries who worked for Churchill at Chartwell and Hyde Park Gate (Gilbert, Vol. VIII, p.305). She appears in the Chartwell Visitor’s Book and notes and correspondence by her are part of the Churchill Archive. The Archive indicates Hipwell’s work for Churchill spanned at least 1939 to 1947 and says of his secretaries “While Churchill worked these other women in his life very hard, occasionally demanding that they stay up late into the night taking dictation, they generally regarded him with great affection… And Churchill genuinely appreciated their help and support.” Indeed, Churchill’s biographer, Martin Gilbert, records that Anne Hipwell was one of the secretaries who contributed to his 30 November 1946 72nd birthday gift, “a magnificent bowl of flowers”.
We commissioned this exceptional fine binding in full tan-orange morocco. The binding features a hubbed spine, the raised bands framed and decorated in gilt and blind, the upper spine with twin brown morocco spine labels. The beveled-edge boards feature gilt border rule. The contents are bound with gilt-top edge, head and foot bands, and striking orange marbled endpapers framed by gilt-ruled turn-ins. Condition is fine, the binding absolutely flawless, the contents clean apart from modest age-toning to the deckled fore edge and bottom edge.
At the time he inscribed this book, Churchill was serving as Leader of the Opposition. Churchill had lost his wartime premiership to the Labour landslide victory in the General Election of July 1945. He would not return to 10 Downing Street for his second and final premiership until the General Election of October 1951. This book was published on 25 November 1932 in a world almost unrecognizable to that of 1947, when it was inscribed. Churchill was then just days shy of his 58th birthday. The balance of the 1930s became his “wilderness years” during which he was frequently at odds with both his party and prevailing public sentiment, passing into his sixties with both his own future and that of his nation increasingly uncertain.
Throughout the 1930s, Churchill relied upon a tremendous output of published writing both to promote his views and to provide for his family. The 23 engaging essays on an incredibly wide variety of subjects published in Thoughts and Adventures / Amid These Storms have been called "The broadest range of Churchill's thought between hard covers" and reflect the two qualities that so characterize Churchill's life - a remarkable breadth of both mind and life experience. The content ranges from personal and political musings to prescient speculation on the future. A contemporary blurb captures the spirit of the work: "Whether he is dealing with personal reminiscences, or telling us his views on any subject under the sun, Mr. Churchill stamps the page with his own vivid personality." In a 31 May 1932 letter to his publisher, Churchill characterized the book thus: "...although there is no one single theme, it has some of the best things in it I have ever written."
This U.S. first edition text was photo-reproduced from the British first edition, but everything else about the edition differed markedly from its British counterpart. Whereas the British first edition titled Thoughts and Adventures was bound in khaki cloth with a tan dust jacket, Amid These Storms was bound in red-orange cloth with an illustrated, red-orange and white dust jacket. The tan-orange and orange marbled endpapers of this inscribed copy’s fine binding nod to elements of both the U.S. and British first editions.
Reference: Cohen A95.2, Woods/ICS A39(ba), Langworth p.158. Item #005822