December 21, 2022

Legacy Lecture: The Christmas Truce

The Christmas Truce of 1914 remains a moment of enduring fascination more than a century after the day the First World War guns fell silent. Now for the first time, hundreds of first person accounts of this most extraordinary period of history have been gathered together telling the story in their own words of the soldiers who met in peace in No Man’s Land. The stories of men from English, Irish, Scottish and Welsh regiments who played and joked, sang and danced, swapped gifts and shared food and drink with the enemy before returning to war on the Western Front.

Christmas Truce By The Men Who Took Part is the largest collection ever drawn together of letters sent home by the officers and soldiers who laid down their guns and shook hands with their foes. The eye opening accounts of the unofficial armistice between German and British forces capture the trepidation and exhilaration, the curiosity, anger, joy and despair of that first Christmas on the unforgiving battlegrounds of the Great War.

Mike Hill is an award-winning journalist who has worked in the newspaper industry for more than 25 years holding senior news and features desk roles at some of UK’s most respected regional titles. He was born in Liverpool and lives on Merseyside with his wife and two sons.

Purchase the book here.

The views expressed in this video are those of the presenter and do not necessarily reflect those of the George C. Marshall Foundation.