American Military History
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American Military History

Visit key sites across Cambridgeshire that showcase American Military History, ranging from Museums and Memorials to a famous historical Pub .

IWM Duxford

Visit Imperial War Museum Duxford for a huge day out. See Spitfires take to the skies from the airfield where they first flew, get up close to gigantic aircraft and walk in the footsteps of the men and women who served here.

From the early days of flight, through to the dramatic days of the Second World War and the technological advances of the Cold War, IWM Duxford has played a central role in some of the most significant periods of 20th century history.

Inside every hangar and exhibition, you’ll discover iconic aircraft, see historic objects from our collections and uncover hundreds of personal stories of the many lives impacted by conflict.

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Bottisham Air Museum

The Museum was opened in 2009 to commemorate the sometimes-forgotten role of the airfield at Bottisham in World War Two. It is the only UK museum dedicated to the Royal Air Force, United States 8th Army Air Force and Belgian Air Forces.  We are now operating out of the last remaining airfield buildings to exist within the airfield’s original perimeter.

A Nissen Hut was erected in the original location of one that was there in 2016. The restoration of the original buildings was completed in 2020.

The museum is now fully functioning with modern facilities including a coffee shop and shop.

Our Mission Statement – To collect, restore, conserve and display items relevant to the history of Bottisham Airfield, including material relating to the Home Front in the local communities and local personalities. To promote and encourage interest in the Museum, especially among the local communities, young and old, and in relation to items or memorabilia that individuals might wish to donate to the Museum. To educate visitors to the Museum regarding the role of the airfield, the units that served there and the role the village played in the war effort.

History – Originally prepared in 1940 as a satellite of RAF Waterbeach, Bottisham was built as a grass airfield and was initially used by the Cambridge based Tiger Moths of No.22 Elementary Flying Training School as a relief landing ground.

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The Eagle Pub

The Eagle, since 1667, has poured pints in gratitude for our patrons’ achievements. From Watson and Crick, the regulars who discovered DNA and celebrated that phenomenon here, to the hundreds of WW2 RAF pilots who left behind a wall of messages in the hope they were never forgotten.

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American War Cemetery 

The Cambridge American Cemetery and Memorial site in England, 30.5 acres in total, was donated by the University of Cambridge. It lies on a slope with the west and south sides framed by woodland. The cemetery contains the remains of 3,811 of our war dead; 5,127 names are recorded on the Walls of the Missing. Rosettes mark the names of those since recovered and identified. Most died in the Battle of the Atlantic or in the strategic air bombardment of northwest Europe.

From the flagpole platform near the main entrance, the great mall with its reflecting pools stretches eastward. It is from the mall that the wide, sweeping curve of the burial area across the lawn is best appreciated. Along the south side are the Walls of the Missing, and at the far end is the memorial with a chapel, two huge military maps, stained glass windows bearing the state seals and military decorations, and a mosaic ceiling memorial honoring the dead of our air forces.

A new, 4,000-square-foot center visitor center opened in May 2014. Through interpretive exhibits that incorporate personal stories, photographs, films, and interactive displays, visitors will gain a better understanding of this critical campaign that contributed to the Allied victory in Europe during World War II.

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Did you know?

Lord Byron, the famous Romantic poet, is said to have kept a bear while he was a student at Trinity College in the 1800s.