Sarah Churchill

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Winston Churchill serving in the British Army. (Photo by Time Life Pictures/Pictures Inc./The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)

Winston Churchill serving in the British Army. (Photo by Time Life Pictures/Pictures Inc./The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)

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Hereditary titles held by the Spencers include the dukedom of Marlborough, the earldoms of Sunderland and Spencer, and the Churchill viscountcy. Two prominent members of the family during the 20th century were Sir Winston Churchill and Diana, Princess of Wales.

I was blown away when I saw Sarah Churchill with Victor Bergeron, who I met several times. Vic dropped off produce at Traders almost every day. He would go inside and have lunch with his friend, leaving Mark and I sitting in the truck. We were in training. Our father  told me he used Wolf Larsen as a model on how to raise us. I believe we – Acme Produce – lost the Trader Vic’s account after Vic caught the cook sneaking a sandwich to his sons. He went off on him.

I saw my Bad Muse in Sarah’s features. It’s the way their noses sit on their face. Sarah had a problem with booze, and is seen above being arrested in Malibu, the Tiki Capital of America at one time. The main reason for my blog, and my two non-fiction novels is the realization I had years ago, that American Culture had completed its Bohemian Way of Life, and everything from now on, is going to be a deliberate replication by future generations – who need a good role model! Everything is going to be remixed!

One motive for  Victor Bergeron changing the name of his restaurant, was there was a chain of Hinky Dinky stores in Nebraska, established in 1925. Now that the Supreme Court has ruled corporations are people too, we will begin to resemble the early British Empire that was a Huge Business into Branding. The uniform made the man. Lucky Victor’s is a brand name that m be used in the future by someone who has read my book. Hinky Dinky  Parlez Vous was a popular world war one song. I might start a Business Genealogical Tree service, and Family Business Album.

To see a photo of a archetypal Royal Bad Girl in Traders Vic’s, is awe-inspiring. Note the roaring British Lion on the wall at the Cop Shop. This is High Tiki Culture also known as Polynesian Pop. The phrase “The natives are restless tonight.” denotes the occupation by the Empire, a idea Princess Diana loathed. That is her banner hanging in Saint Martin’s Church where Sarah Churchill came to rest.

My video of Belle in Kesey Square shows a classy dame – slumming! She then sends me the poem to go with – after she is arrested for trespassing in the City Manager’s Office, along with the other Classy Slummerette, Alley Valkyrie. You know SLEEPS is going to be my guests at the Mucumba Love Festival, wearing their Country Fair costumes.

Jon Presco


Tiki maestro Victor Bergeron of Trader Vic’s fame.

The fine folks over at Oakland North are doing a history series, and today’s topic is a neighborhood that doesn’t exist anymore called the Golden Gate District. The area was centered around a particularly boozy few blocks of San Pablo Avenue that was home to “50 bars from the Emeryville line to the Berkeley line,” including the famed original location of Trader Vic’s, opened in 1937 at 6500 San Pablo — now a vacant lot. They’ve got a cool interactive map of all the former taverns and saloons, which have pretty much all converted to other uses, or been demolished. We only wish we could have seen the Adam and Eve Tavern at 5515 San Pablo, which was operated by a bartender known as “Big Edna.”


Victor Jules Bergeron, Jr. (Born December 10, 1902) famously opened the original Hinky Dinks at 6500 San Pablo (now a vacant lot) in 1934 with a $500 loan. Hinky Dinks was named after the World War I era song “Hinky Dinky Parlay Vous. As the story goes, after an adventure to Cuba to “refine his skills as a bartender and explore the subtleties of rums from around the world”, Bergeron continued to Hawaii where he completely immersed himself in island living and culture. Upon his return and a visit to L.A.’s Don the Beachcomber in 1937, he transformed Hinky Dink’s from a saloon into a tropical retreat that he renamed “Trader Vic’s” after a nickname given by his wife because of his knack for bartering services. He re-outfitted the space with knickknacks he had collected throughout his travels and retooled the menu with Island-style/Cantonese cuisine becoming “America’s first fusion restaurant concept”. Adding to Vic’s island mystique was the fast that he had a left Wooden-leg that he apparently allowed customers to stab with an ice-pick. The missing appendage was untruly rumored (but perhaps self-perpetuated) to have been bitten off by a shark when in reality, Doctors amputated it when he was six to prevent his death from tuberculosis of the knee.

The Hinky Dinky grocery store chain was started by Jule, Henry and Albert Newman, brothers, and Ben Silver, a cousin, in Omaha in 1925. Another supermarket chain already existing was called Piggly Wiggly. Hoping to take advantage of the public’s affection for a cute name (Piggly Wiggly was very successful) they came up with “Hinky-Dinky”, which was taken from the World War I song, “Hinky Dinky Parlez-vous” (see Mademoiselle from Armentières).

In 1972, Hinky Dinky was purchased by Cullum Companies of Dallas, which operated the Tom Thumb grocery chain. At its peak, Hinky Dinky operated approximately 50 stores.[1] But Cullum was using profits from Hinky Dinky to support the operations of the Tom Thumb stores, and comparatively little reinvestment was made in the Hinky Dinky stores.[2]

Donn Beach (February 22, 1907 – June 7, 1989), born Ernest Raymond Beaumont Gantt, was the founding father oftiki restaurants, bars and nightclubs.[1] The many so-called “Polynesian” restaurants and pubs that enjoyed great popularity are directly descended from what he created. After years of being called Don the Beachcomber because of his original bar/restaurant, Gantt changed his name several times, using Donn Beach-Comber, to Donn Beachcomber, and finally settling on Donn Beach.

Daughter of Winston Churchill and Clementine Churchill. Sister of Diana ChurchillLady Mary Soames, Marigold Frances Churchill (15 November 1918 – 23 August 1921), andRandolph Churchill. Aunt of Winston ChurchillArabella ChurchillCelia Sandys, andNicholas Soames.

Last appeared on stage in 1971.

Was fond of reading spy thrillers and watching classic horror movies.

She had a problem with alcoholism during the 1950’s, and was at one time even briefly incarcerated at Holloway Prison. Combined with her flamboyant life style, this was often a frequent source of consternation to her illustrious father.

During World War II, worked in photo reconnaissance for the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force. She accompanied her father, Winston Churchill, to both the Teheran and Yalta Conferences.

St Martin’s Church in Bladon near WoodstockOxfordshireEngland, is the Church of England parish church of Bladon-with-Woodstock. It is also the mother church of St Mary Magdalene at Woodstock, which was originally achapel of ease. It is best known for the graves of the Spencer-Churchill family, including Sir Winston Churchill, in its churchyard.

The first church on the current site was probably built in the 11th or 12th century. The earliest references to the church state that John de London,Henry III’s chaplain, obtained from the King a grant of the Manor of Bladon, with the advowson of the Rectory in 1269.

A print hung in the present St Martin’s shows the old church before its demolition in 1802. This print shows an ornate Norman doorway to the south porch, which suggests a 12th or late 11th century date for the building. It also shows a clerestory that would have increased the amount of natural light in the nave.

The parish registers of baptismsmarriages and burials date from 1545 and are kept at the Bodleian library in Oxford.

There is no record of the church building itself until 1802, when the parish petitioned the Bishop of Oxford to grant them a new building as the old one was becoming dilapidated and dangerous. Permission was granted, the medieval church was demolished, the 4th Duke of Marlborough paid for building materials and the new church was opened in 1804.

In 1891 the architect A.W. Blomfield rebuilt the chancelrestored the nave, added new windows and added pinnacles on the tower.[1] Unlike the medieval church, the new building has no clerestory and despite the windows that Blomfield added the interior remains relatively dark.

The work was carried out largely at the expense of the rector, Arthur Majendie, and resulted in the creation of the present church. Because of these efforts, three windows in the chancel are dedicated to his memory by his widow and children. Other feature windows in the church include a copy of Sir Joshua Reynolds‘ Choir of the Cherubs. In 1893, Majendie gave a lych gatein memory of his mother. In 1937, a statue of Saint Martin was placed in a niche over the porch.

Spencer-Churchill graves[edit]

Winston and Clementine Churchill’s grave after restoration in 2006

The grave of the 10th Duke of Marlborough and his first wife at St Martin’s Church.

The parish of St Martin’s includes Blenheim Palace, the family seat of the dukes of Marlborough. Most ‘lesser members’ of the Spencer-Churchill family are interred in St. Martin’s parish churchyard at Bladon. With the exception of the 10th Duke and his first wife, the Dukes and Duchesses of Marlborough are buried in the Blenheim Palace chapel.

Sir Winston Churchill had expressed a wish to be buried at Bladon. So, on 30 January 1965, after his state funeral service at St Paul’s CathedralLondon (the largest ever held in world history up to that point), his body was taken by train to nearbyHanborough railway station and thence to Bladon. There, the private burial took place, conducted by the rector. By contrast with the earlier service, only relatives and close friends were present.

In 1998 his tombstone had to be replaced because of the large number of visitors over the years having eroded it and its surrounding area. A new stone was dedicated in a ceremony attended by members of the Spencer-Churchill family.[2] However, after only eight years the gravestone had become dirty and partially eroded again. In July 2006 the area of the graveyard containing Churchill’s grave was closed to the public and a cleaning and restoration project restored the gravestone.

The churchyard also contains the graves of Sir Winston’s parents Lord Randolph Churchill and Lady Randolph Churchill, his younger brother John or Jack, his children DianaRandolph, and Sarah, and his-son-in-law Christopher Soames. Other Churchill family members buried there include the 10th Duke of Marlborough along with his first wife The Hon. Alexandra Mary Cadogan and his mother, Consuelo Vanderbilt, former Duchess of Marlborough through her marriage to the 9th Duke of Marlborough, and their younger son Lord Ivor Charles Spencer-Churchill.

The Spencers later joined the Churchills upon the marriage of Charles Spencer, 3rd Earl of Sunderland and Lady Anne Churchill, daughter of the most celebrated Duke of Marlborough. From them descends the current line of the Spencer family which was divided into two branches. The senior line are currently the ducal line of the Spencer family who holds the Dukedom of Marlborough. The 5th Duke of Marlborough later changed their surname to Spencer-Churchill to emphasize their descent from the first duke. The junior line are currently the comital branch of the family who holds the title Earl Spencer.

The estate given by the nation to Marlborough for the new palace was the manor of Woodstock, sometimes called the Palace of Woodstock, which had been a royal demesne, in reality little more than a deer park. Legend has obscured the manor’s origins. King Henry I enclosed the park to contain the deer. Henry II housed his mistress Rosamund Clifford (sometimes known as “Fair Rosamund”) there in a “bower and labyrinth”; a spring where she is said to have bathed remains, named after her. It seems the unostentatious hunting lodge was rebuilt many times

The churchyard is the subject of the poem ‘At Bladon’, by Avril Andersen (also known as Mrs Crabtree):

‘At Bladon’

From the halls of king’s they bore him then
the greatest of all Englishmen
to the nations the world’s requiem
at Bladon.
Drop English earth on him beneath
to our sons; and their sons bequeath
his glories and our pride and grief
at Bladon.
For Lionheart that lies below
that feared not toil nor tears or foe.
Let the oak stand tho’ tempests blow
at Bladon.
So Churchill sleeps, yet surely wakes
old warrior where the morning breaks
on sunlit uplands. But the heart aches
at Bladon.

Sarah Churchill was born in London, the second daughter of Winston Churchill, later Prime Minister of the UK during the Second World War, and Clementine Churchill, later Baroness Spencer-Churchill; she was the third of the couple’s five children and was named after Sir Winston’s ancestor, Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough. She was educated atNotting Hill High School as a day girl and later at North Foreland Lodge as a boarder.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Churchill married three times:

  1. Vic Oliver, a popular comedian and musician (1936–1945) (divorced)
  2. Anthony Beauchamp (1949–1957) (widowed)
  3. Thomas Percy Henry Touchet-Jesson, 23rd Baron Audley (1962–1963) (widowed)

It has been both stated and confirmed by multiple sources,[who?] including Sarah Churchill’s sister, Lady Soames, that Winston and Clementine Churchill neither liked nor approved of Sarah’s first two husbands. Towards the end of her marriage to Vic Oliver, she began an affair with the American ambassador to Britain, John Winant; it is believed the failure of the relationship contributed to the depression that led to his suicide in 1947.[2] Only Sarah’s third marriage to Lord Audley (the love of her life, it was said) was greeted with warm approval by both parents.

In numerous books about the Churchill family, it is said that Clementine (despite her disapproval) managed to be polite to both Vic Oliver and Anthony Beauchamp after Sarah had married them, but Winston Churchill remained rather cold and hostile toward both, considering them to be self-centred, superficial types who ultimately did not make his beloved Sarah either happy or fulfilled.[citation needed] Sarah’s marriage to Beauchamp in America in 1949 came as a shock to her parents since they had neither been introduced to Beauchamp nor informed of the forthcoming marriage. Despite her stubborn rebellion against the expectations of both parents, Sarah reportedly felt guilty about this for the rest of her life, since she had craved her father’s approval in most matters.[citation needed]

In 1964 Sarah became romantically involved with African-American émigré jazz singer and painter Lobo Nocho, and there were reports that the two might marry.[3][4]Her father was also believed to have disapproved of this relationship.[5]

World War II service[edit]

Winston Churchill is accompanied by his daughter Sarah, Cairo, December 1943

During World War II, Churchill joined the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF). In her account of the work of photo reconnaissance Evidence in Camera Constance Babington Smith records that she was with them and worked closely on the interpretation of photographs for the 1942 invasion of North AfricaOperation Torch. Known by the name Sarah Oliver, Babington Smith says she was “a quick and versatile interpreter.” Aspects of Churchill’s wartime service are also described in detail in Women of Intelligence: Winning the Second World War with Air Photos.

American author Christopher Ogden’s biography of Pamela Harriman and other sources indicate that during the war she had an affair with (married) US Ambassador John Gilbert Winant, and that it ended badly. Winant committed suicide in 1947.

Acting career[edit]

Churchill is best known for her role in the film Royal Wedding (1951) as Anne Ashmond, romantic interest of Fred Astaire as Tom Bowen. In the same year, she had her own television show. She also appeared in He Found a Star (1941), All Over the Town (1949), Fabian of the Yard (1954) and Serious Charge (1959).

She appeared on both the Jack Benny radio and television programmes. On television, she appeared on the episode “How Jack Met Rochester.”

In 1961, she appeared as Rosalind in Shakespeare’s As You Like It at the Pembroke-in-the-round Theatre in West Croydon. Her parents were noted as paying a surprise visit to watch her performance which was almost entirely attended by Croydon schoolchildren, and her father (who sat in the front row of an in-the-round performance and so was highly visible throughout) fell asleep.

Alcohol problems[edit]

Sarah Churchill’s grave at St Martin’s Church, Bladon

Churchill appeared in a London revival of Shaw’s Pygmalion in the 1950s, but drinking had become a problem. She was arrested for making a scene in the street on a number of occasions and even spent a short spell on remand in HM Prison Holloway. She wrote frankly about this in her 1981 autobiography Keep on Dancing.

Death and interment[edit]

Sarah Churchill died on 24 September 1982 at the age of 67. She is buried with her parents and siblings at St Martin’s Church, Bladon, near Woodstock, Oxfordshire.[6]


Sarah Churchill in Royal Wedding(1951)

LONDON, Sept. 24— Sarah Churchill, whose flamboyant style of life overshadowed her acting career and sometimes dismayed her father, Winston Churchill, died early today after a long illness, her family said. She was 67 years old.

Her brother-in-law, Lord Soames, said she died in her sleep at her London home after an undisclosed illness. Funeral arrangements were pending.

The death of Sarah Churchill, who had lived in the United States for more than 20 years, leaves her younger sister, Lady Soames, as the only surviving child of Britain’s wartime Prime Minister. Diana died in 1963 and Randolph in 1968.

Sarah Churchill, who became Lady Audley when she married Lord Audley, her third husband, described in her 1981 autobiography, ”Keep On Dancing,” the ”wild period” that took her onto the Broadway and London stages and through her three marriages, drinking bouts and wild parties. ‘The Lamb Who Strayed’

In an interview last year with The Standard, she described herself as ”the lamb who strayed from the fold.” Lady Audley said she grew up as a loner. ”I had a lovely childhood, but I suddenly knew around 17 I had to make a break,” she once said. ”It was too comfortable, too secure.”

After leaving school she studied ballet and made her first appearance on the stage at the Adelphi Theater in London at the age of 21 in the chorus line of ”Follow the Sun.”

She fell in love with Vic Oliver, an Austrian comedian 17 years her senior who was associated with the show. They married in 1936, much to her father’s distress. Worked in Photo Intelligence

When World War II started, Lady Audley left the stage and worked in photo intelligence for the Women’s Air Force until 1945. She took two short breaks to accompany her father to the 1943 Teheran conference with President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the 1945 Yalta conference, where Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin mapped postwar plans.

She was divorced at the end of the war. She made her first appearance on the American stage in Princeton, N.J., in 1949 as Tracy Lord in ”The Philadelphia Story,” and later toured in the same part. That year she married Anthony Beauchamp, a photographer.

In the 1950’s she was often seen in dramatic roles on American television. She also appeared in ”Gramercy Ghost” on Broadway, in the title role in ”Peter Pan” at the Scala and toured Britain as Eliza in ”Pygmalion.”

Mr. Beauchamp died from an overdose of sleeping pills in 1958. Friends said she finally found peace with her third husband, Lord Audley, but he died in 1963 within a year of their marriage. She had no children from any of the marriages.

She last appeared onstage in 1971 and had devoted the last decade to writing, entertaining friends, reading spy thrillers and watching old horror movies.

About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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1 Response to Sarah Churchill

  1. Reblogged this on Rosamond Press and commented:

    This information will be included in my proposal to the Bucck Foundation and Alcohol Justice.

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