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Are you related to Winston Churchill?
What about that name?
When ever I first meet someone...
...or give a speech...
...or write an article...
I know from experience that there are usually 2 questions swirling around in the person's mind:
Is that your real name?
Are you related?
The short answers are both “Yes.”
Let me explain...
I have a common ancestor with Winston Churchill. This was confirmed several years ago by Y-DNA testing as part of a genealogical research project being conducted into the Churchill line around the world.
Not Really Close Personal Friends
But my family was not even close to the Churchill family in England which makes this a more remarkable story (at least to me).
I'm a “Junior” meaning my father was given the name by his parents in 1924.
When my father was born, Winston was not yet famous to Americans-he was a public official but not well known in America. (Quick, do you know anybody's name in the UK government except the Prime Minister?)
Neither did my grandparents on a farm in Minnesota.
Car Nuts Unite
My grandfather was a “car nut” and named his son (my father) in honor of...a car!
PBS actually did a documentary on the car (and its driver) you can read more about here: http://www.pbs.org/horatio/
In fact, at the time, one venture capitalist remarked that the big drawback to the automobile was you'd have to pave the entire network of dirt and gravel roads that crisscrossed the country.
Winton Motor Car Company
The manufacturer of that car, Winton Motor Car Company of Cleveland, OH was sold to a company that would become a division of General Motors and remnants of the original company exist today as one of GM's specialized engine divisions.
Brush with Kin Folk...
However, shortly after the DNA test I had an opportunity to have a very memorable dinner with Winston Churchill's granddaughter, Celia Sandys (http://www.celiasandys.com/biography) when she was in Los Angeles.
And now you know...