Churchill survived Salmonella that killed his servant on a trip to East Africa

A never-seen-before letter by Winston Churchill has emerged to reveal how the future Prime Minister once escaped a fatal bout of food poisoning which killed his servant instead.

churchill-warThe great wartime leader described how he had eaten the same food as George Scrivings, who became ravaged with salmonella poisoning a short while later.

The valet endured 16 hours of choleraic diarrhea before passing away in 1907 during a trip to East Africa.

After burying the army officer, Churchill wrote a very personal and poignant letter to Scrivings’ wife to break the news to her.

In it he wrote how her husband ‘seems to have eaten some poisonous food’, adding ‘we have all had the same food, for he always ate whatever was prepared for me and others’.

Churchill then speculated: ‘It may be some mouthful of poisoned fish from a tin.’

The little-known episode reveals a previously-unknown close brush with death Churchill had which could have changed the course of history.

His letter to Mrs Scrivings has now emerged for sale at International Autograph Auctions for the first time after being in the hands of a private collector for years.salm-churchill-lett-2