The Famous Stoneman Portrait Photograph of Winston Churchill Taken in 1941, Signed in a Program Honoring Him With the Freedom of the City of Sheffield

He received the honor “in recognition of the eminent services rendered by him to the Empire”

This is the only Freedom of the City program signed by Churchill that we have seen

In the United States, notables are given the honor of receiving the key to a city. There is a similar tradition in England, with the honoree receiving the Freedom of the City. During his lifetime, more...

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The Famous Stoneman Portrait Photograph of Winston Churchill Taken in 1941, Signed in a Program Honoring Him With the Freedom of the City of Sheffield

He received the honor “in recognition of the eminent services rendered by him to the Empire”

This is the only Freedom of the City program signed by Churchill that we have seen

In the United States, notables are given the honor of receiving the key to a city. There is a similar tradition in England, with the honoree receiving the Freedom of the City. During his lifetime, more than a dozen cities in England chose to thus honor Winston Churchill, most for his services as Prime Minister in leading the British to victory in World War II, and a few for this efforts as head of the Conservative Party.

One of those cities was Sheffield, which was very extensively bombed by the Germans in the Blitz in World War II. On March 5, 1951, Sheffield honored Churchill, who attended the ceremony in person. This is the program from that event, the “Ceremony of Admission” to the “Honorary Freedom of the City” that took place at City Hall that day at 7:30 in the evening. The program contains biographical information on Churchill, and includes a copy of the city resolution granting him the honor, which states that it is presented to Churchill “in recognition of the eminent services rendered by him to the Empire.”

Inside the program is the famous Stoneman portrait photograph of Churchill taken in 1941, amidst the war, with the offices he held beneath it, and he has signed in blue ballpoint pen below that. This is the only Freedom of the City program signed by Churchill that we have seen. Included is the original ticket to the event used by the attendee who obtained the signature.

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