America’s National Churchill Museum (formerly the Winston Churchill Memorial and Library), is located on the Westminster College campus in Fulton, Missouri, United States. The museum commemorates the life and times of Sir Winston Churchill. In 1946, Winston Churchill delivered his famous “Sinews of Peace” address in the Westminster College Historic Gymnasium. In it was the line: “From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the continent.” This sentence caused the oration to become known as the “Iron Curtain” speech. “Sinews of Peace” heralded the beginning of the Cold War. America’s National Churchill Museum comprises three distinct but related elements: the Church of St Mary Aldermanbury, the museum, and the Breakthrough sculpture.
The church was built in 1558 by Sir Edward Stanley and was endowed by him to the Drapers’ Company, after his return to England from Spain. The Drapers’ Company provided the furniture and fittings. It became the Church of St Mary Aldermanbury in the late 16th century. The church was so highly regarded that visitors to London would not only take the necessary services at the church, but would also visit the Museum, and the Churchill Room. It became known as “the English church” and the “Protestant church” because the church’s services and worship forms were so different from those of the established church. The minister, it is said, had to stand on a chair to preach from the pulpit. Though the Church of St Mary Aldermanbury has long gone, its memorial to Winston Churchill has endured.
Church of St Mary Aldermanbury The Church of St Mary Aldermanbury is one of a group of seven restored Georgian houses built in the 1730s to 1740s by Francis Levett. Churchill would occasionally visit his good friend Henry Haughey who lived in one of the houses. The Church of St Mary Aldermanbury is a rectangular sandstone building featuring a 16th century stone staircase and five tomb windows. Churchill, Haughey, and the Church of St Mary Aldermanbury had a love affair. Haughey once said: “Churchill loves St Mary Aldermanbury like a woman loves a man. He adores the place as if it were a daughter.” Many early Winston Churchill documents are stored in the Church. The church underwent extensive restoration in 2012. The museum is located in a historic and iconic building.