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WINTRINGHAM, Capt Thomas Henry (1898-1949)

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0099 KCLMA Wintringham
Held at: Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives, King's College London
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Full title: WINTRINGHAM, Capt Thomas Henry (1898-1949)
Date(s): 1891-1982
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 23 boxes or 0.23 metres cubed
Name of creator(s): Wintringham | Thomas Henry | 1898-1945 | socialist writer and military commentator
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

Born 15 May 1898 in Grimsby, Lincolnshire. Educated at Gresham's School, Holt, 1910-1916. Served in the World War One as a mechanic and motorcycle dispatch rider, Royal Flying Corps, Jun 1916-[Feb] 1919; Balliol College, Oxford, 1918-1920; visited Moscow, 1920; joined Communist Party Great Britain (CPGB), Feb 1923; assistant editor of Workers Weekly, 1923-1925. Married Elizabeth Emma Arkwright, 31 Aug 1923; imprisoned for sedition, Nov 1925-Apr 1926; editor of Workers' Life, May 1926-Jan 1930; editor of Daily Worker, Jan 1930-[1936]; founder editor of the Left Review, 1936; military correspondent of the Daily Worker, 1936. Joined the British Bn, International Bde, fighting with Republican forces, Spanish Civil War, Aug 1936-Aug 1937; machine-gun instructor for 11 Bn and 12 Bn, Nov 1936; commanded British Bn, 15 International Bde, 1937; wounded, Feb 1937; instructor at Officer's Training School, Albacete, Jun 1937; rejoined 15 Bde as a staff officer; wounded in Aragon, 25 Aug 1937; returned to England, Nov 1937. Expelled from the Communist Party, Jul 1938; divorced Elizabeth, Feb 1940; married Katherine 'Kitty' Wise Bowler, 25 Jan 1941; set up the Osterley Park Training School to provide instruction to the Home Guard, Jun 1940-[Jun] 1941; co-founder of the Common Wealth Party, July 1942; unsuccessfully ran in the 1943 by-election as Common Wealth Party candidate for North-Midlothian; unsuccessfully ran in the 1945 General Election as Common Wealth Party candidate for Aldershot. Died 16 Aug 1949. Publications: The Coming World War (Wishart Books, London, 1935), Mutiny: Being a survey of mutinies from Spartacus to Invergordon (Stanley Nott, London, 1936). English Captain. Reminiscences of service in the International Brigade in the Spanish Civil War (Faber & Faber, London, 1939). Armies of Freemen (G Routledge & Sons, London, 1940). New Ways of War (Penguin Books, Harmondsworth and New York, 1940). Deadlock war (Faber & Faber, London, 1940). Blitzkrieg, by Ferdinand Otto Miksche, translated and with introduction by Tom Wintringham (Faber & Faber, London, 1941). The Politics of Victory (G Routledge & Sons, London, 1941). Freedom is our weapon. A policy for army reform (Kegan Paul & Co, London, 1941). Guerrilla Warfare by Bert Yank Levy, ghost written and with an introduction by Tom Wintringham (Penguin, 1941). Peoples' War (Penguin, Harmondsworth and New York, 1942). Weapons and Tactics (Faber & Faber, London, 1943). We're going on!: the collected poems of Tom Wintringham, edited by Hugh Purcell (Smokestack, Middlesbrough, 2006).


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of Tom Wintringham and his second wife Katherine 'Kitty' Wintringham (née Bowler), 1891-1982. Papers of Tom Wintringham relating to the Home Guard include correspondence, articles, radio broadcasts, press cuttings, photograph, report, lecture transcripts and training exercises. Papers relating to the Common Wealth Party including correspondence, photographs, minutes, publications, papers on Common Wealth Party policy, formation, resignations, libel charges, election campaigns and conferences. Other papers relating to Tom Wintringham including papers from his time at Balliol College, Oxford, 1918-1920; Wintringham's visit to Moscow, 1920; various inventions by Wintringham, 1929-1949; the Communist Party, 1933-1944; British economic crisis, 1947, and obituaries and biographical articles. Wintringham's correspondence includes his school days, First World War, prison, Spanish Civil War, Home Guard, Common Wealth Party and general personal and professional correspondence; Kitty's correspondence includes Spanish Civil War, the Common Wealth Party and general personal and professional correspondence. Photographs notably cover the Spanish Civil War, Home Guard, Common Wealth Party, Tom and Kitty Wintringham, their children, friends and family. Writings by Wintringham include draft and published articles (chiefly for the Picture Post, the Tribune, the Daily Herald and the Daily Mirror), drafts of published and unpublished books, scripts, reviews, notes, short stories and essays. Draft articles by Kitty. Poems by Wintringham and others on topics including World War One and the Spanish Civil War, 1910-1950 and printed material, 1923-1950.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:
English, with a small number of items in Spanish, German, French, Russian and Arabic.

System of arrangement:

Papers are arranged in sections as follows: Spanish Civil War, Home Guard, Common Wealth Party, other papers relating to Tom Wintringham (excluding Spanish Civil War, Home Guard and Common Wealth Party), books by Wintringham, articles and other writings by Wintringham, articles by Kitty Wintringham, Wintringham's correspondence, Kitty Wintringham's correspondence, photographs, poems and printed material. Photographs and correspondence for the Spanish Civil War, the Home Guard and the Common Wealth Party have not been placed in 'Photographs' and 'Correspondence' but have remained in their respective sections.

Conditions governing access:

Open, subject to signature of Reader's undertaking form, and appropriate provision of two forms of identification, to include one photographic ID.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be provided for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Trustees of the Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives, attention of the Director of Archive Services.

Finding aids:

Detailed catalogue available on-line and in hard copy in the Centre's reading room.

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Placed in the Centre by the Wintringham family in 1998, second accession 2004.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Collections also relating to the Spanish Civil War located in the Liddell Hart Centre include parts of the Bryant and Liddell Hart papers.

The Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives holds the following archives relating to Tom Wintringham: correspondence between Capt Tom Wintringham and Sir Basil Liddell Hart, 1938-1943 (LIDDELL: 1/758 and 9/22/7); article 'The War Office' by Wintringham in The Political Quarterly, Jun 1942 (LIDDELL: 13/17); Review by Liddell Hart of Deadlock war (Faber and Faber, London, 1940) by Wintringham, in The Listener, 2 Apr 1940 (LIDDELL: 10/1940/14) and papers of Lt Col Ferdinand Otto Miksche, (MIKSCHE) with whom Wintringham wrote Blitzkrieg, including correspondence with Wintringham. The centre also holds the following publications by Wintringham in the Liddell Hart Library: The Coming World War; English Captain; Weapons and Tactics; Freedom is our Weapon; New Ways of War; Deadlock War; Blitzkrieg, and How to Reform the Army.

Letters from Wintringham, 1931-1941 are held in Manchester University: Labour History Archive and Study Centre. Papers of the Common Wealth Party, 1942-1969, are held in Sussex University Library Special Collections.

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Sources: Who was who. Entry compiled by Geoff Browell; revised by Sarah Drewery.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
May 2003, Jun 2007

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