Lincoln & Churchill: Statesmen at War

Lewis E. Lehrman (Author)


A Renowned Historian Gives New Perspective on Revered Leaders Separated by eighty years, Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill led their nations to victory in wars of national survival--Lincoln in the Civil War, Churchill in World War II--and became revered leaders, writers and speakers, and statesmen for all time. Yet the two have never been seriously compared at book length. Acclaimed historian Lewis Lehrman finds that Lincoln and Churchill led their wars in remarkably similar fashion, guided by fixed principles of honor, duty, and freedom. Gifted literary stylists, both also relied on the written and spoken word to steel their nation's hearts and give meaning to war's sacrifice. And though both unexpectedly left office near the end of their wars--Lincoln by the bullet, Churchill by the ballot--they had gained victory.

Product Details

$34.95  $32.15
Stackpole Books
Publish Date
January 15, 2018
6.3 X 1.8 X 9.2 inches | 2.0 pounds
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About the Author

Lewis E. Lehrman received the National Humanities Medal for his work in American history. He has written for the Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, National Review, and Harper's, The Churchill Project at Hillsdale College. His previous books include Lincoln at Peoria and Churchill, Roosevelt, and Company. His other work in history includes cofounding the esteemed Lincoln Prize for Civil War scholarship, the Gilder Lehrman Center at Yale, and the Gilder Lehrman Collection at the New-York Historical Society. A graduate of Yale and Harvard, Lehrman has been awarded honorary degrees from Babson College, Gettysburg College, Lincoln College, Marymount University, and Thomas Aquinas College. He lives in Greenwich, Connecticut.


For years, I have longed to be in the same room with Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill. And now Lewis Lehrman has given all of us that chance with this sweeping, yet intimate study of the war leadership of both remarkable men. With penetrating insight, Lehrman unfolds the contrasts and similarities between these two leaders: their points of origin, their temperaments, the nature of their ambitions, their leadership styles. I savored every page of this magnificent work.--Doris Kearns Goodwin, author of the Lincoln Prize-winning Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln
Few men have more profoundly shaped modern history than Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill. In this enlightening, original analysis of their leadership, Lewis E. Lehrman not only sheds a bright light on their remarkable achievements but he also deepens our understanding of the nature of statesmanship. How two leaders of such radically different backgrounds and temperaments led their nations to victory in wars of national survival--thus vindicating government of the people, by the people, and for the people--is an inspiring story, based on deep research, told by Lehrman with great skill. Admirers of both leaders, as well as history fans in general, will enjoy this very well written book and wonder why no previous historian has undertaken such an important comparative study.--Professor Michael Burlingame, Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies at the University of Illinois-Springfield and author of Abraham Lincoln: A Life
Lewis E. Lehrman's book brings a laserlike focus to bear on the two greatest English-speaking statesman of the 19th and 20th century--Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill. The latter is the grandson of a duke, the former was born in rural poverty . . . one a soldier in early maturity, the other a self-taught lawyer who never served more than one summer in the militia . . . one written down by some as a bounder and a prodigal, the other notable for his humility and thrift. Lehrman's dual examination is a compelling study, beautifully written, about the ideals and temperament of these two very different men--their restless intelligence . . . their wonderful stamina . . . their resilience in the face of defeat and disaster . . . their feel for the power of the English language . . . their mix of calmness and aggression . . . their commitment to free institutions. Lehrman's book is much more than elegant biography; he has also given us a well-wrought primer on national leadership. This book will amply repay every moment spent studying it.--Allen C. Guelzo, Henry R. Luce Professor of the Civil War Era at Gettysburg College and author of several prize-winning books on Lincoln and the Civil War, including Gettysburg: The Last Invasion and Abraham Lincoln: Redeemer President
In Lincoln & Churchill: Statesmen at War, Lewis E. Lehrman has accomplished a triumph of interpretation--to unite and to compare the leadership of two great English-speaking statesmen, eight decades apart, engaged in entirely different wars, by showing us what matters about both wars and war leaders, what they had in common, and how they differed. A beautifully written interpretive history, backed by over 1,200 carefully considered footnote-references, Mr. Lehrman illustrates the steel in both war leaders, however vastly they contrasted in upbringing, experience, and personality. This remarkable book is the very first major scholarly effort to compare the greatest English-speaking statesmen of the 19th and 20th centuries.--Richard M. Langworth, CBE, Founder of the Churchill Centre, Founding Editor of Finest Hour and the Chartwell Bulletin, and author of Churchill in His Own Words, among other Churchill books
The enduring fame of Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill rests chiefly on their leadership during existential conflicts. And while the American Civil War and World War II differed in scale, strategic difficulty and technological complexity, the two leaders indelibly stamped their respective causes in similar ways, as Lewis E. Lehrman observes in his penetrating new book, Lincoln & Churchill: Statesmen at War. . . . Deeply researched and elegantly written, Mr. Lehrman's Lincoln & Churchill is a valuable contribution to our knowledge of the past. By expertly conjoining two great leaders in a single volume, he has enhanced our understanding of both.--Michael F. Bishop "The Wall Street Journal "
The relationship between biography and general historical writing can be at times fraught. Because the historian is charged with not only telling history but also explaining it, any book structured around a single person will find itself at constant risk of adopting the thrilling but untestable idea that the events of human history are principally driven by a select group of once-in-a-generation "Great Men." And yet, great men have always existed--men who in select moments make significant contributions to the direction and survival of our civilization. Lewis E. Lehrman's most recent book tackles the wartime efforts of two such men--Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill--but manages to remain cool-tempered and analytical in the process. Though they lived in different eras and nations, both men valiantly led their respective countries through existentially perilous struggles (Lincoln's Civil War and Churchill's fight against Hitler's Germany). The two had drastically different personalities, but held in common a rare gift for oratory, similar war strategies, and, most of all, an undying commitment to core principles of freedom and liberty.--The New Criterion
But rarely does posterity compare and contrast these two historical giants to seek a better understanding of both men. Thankfully, this is what Lewis E. Lehrman has accomplished in his newest book, Lincoln & Churchill: Statesmen at War, an unparalleled examination of war leadership, character, and statecraft by two of the greatest men of their respective generations.... In Lincoln & Churchill, Lehrman offers up a book of inspired insight, impressive erudition, and monumental historical achievement. It is a book worthy of every history lover's shelf.--American Spectator