Participant in World War II
|Headquarters||Knud and Jens' rooms|
|Part of||Danish resistance movement|
|Opponents||German Occupying Forces|
The Churchill Club (Danish: Churchill-klubben) was a group of eight teenage schoolboys from Aalborg Cathedral School in the north of Jutland who performed acts of sabotage against the Germans during the occupation of Denmark in the Second World War.
The Churchill Club was probably the earliest resistance group to be formed in Denmark. Under the leadership of 17-year-old Knud Pedersen, their activities began at the end of 1941 when they began to target the German occupation forces in Aalborg as a result of the German treatment of occupied Norway. They succeeded in carrying out 25 acts of sabotage before they were arrested by the police in May 1942. Some of those acts of sabotage included stealing weapons and destroying vehicles, blueprints, and plane parts. The boys were charged with 1,860 million kroner for the destroyed Nazi property; their sentences ranged from two to three years in prison. Even after imprisonment, they managed to escape at night to continue their sabotage activities.
Knud Pedersen has written four books about the Churchill Club; all were republished in an omnibus edition in 2005.
- Pedersen, Knud (1946). Churchillklubben.
- Pedersen, Knud (1964). Breve fra fængslet.
- Pedersen, Knud (1966). Sidste krigsår.
- Pedersen, Knud (1979). Sagen om Churchillklubben fortalt gennem kilder.
- Pedersen, Knud (2005). Bogen om Churchill-klubben: Churchill-klubben, Breve fra fængslet, Sidste krigsår, Sagen om Churchill-klubben (Omnibus of the previous four books ed.). Copenhagen: Lindhardt og Ringhof.
Adaptations and related works
The popular 1991 movie, The Boys from St. Petri (in Danish: Drengene Fra Sankt Petri), is based on the Churchill Club but goes beyond the facts of the case.
Phillip Hoose's non-fiction book, The Boys who Challenged Hitler: Knud Pederson and the Churchill Club (2015), is based on the Churchill Club.
- Per Eilstrup, Lars Lindeberg (1969), De så de ske under Besættelsen. Gå til modstand. Forlaget Union. Copenhagen.
- "Fængselstiden". Churchill-klubben. Retrieved 23 April 2008.
- "Movie: The Boys From St Petri". The New York Times. 1991. Retrieved 23 April 2008.
- Hoose, Phillip (2015). The Boys who Challenged Hitler: Knud Pederson and the Churchill Club. Farrar Straus Giroux. ISBN 978-0-374-30022-7.
- Website about the Churchill Club (Danish)
- Knud Pedersen, the leader of the group, gives a short overview of the Churchill Club with photographs in a video presentation (in Danish): Et medlem af Churchill-klubben (retrieved 23 April 2008)