Collecting US ’Over Here’ Memorabilia


Britain became home to various allied forces in the fight against Nazi Germany, but the biggest foreign arrival was of American personnel. More than 1.5 million US troops came to the UK, making a lasting impression on their hosts. Austin J Ruddy surveys a selection of items representing the American wartime presence in Britain.

Meet The US Army, written by British poet and playwright Louis MacNeice in 1943 and published by HMSO, offered an introduction to the UK’s American allies.
To help servicemen posted to the UK in 1943, the US War and Navy Departments produced the small booklet, A Short Guide To Great Britain.

Although Japan posed the more immediate threat to America, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill persuaded US President Franklin Roosevelt that Germany was the greater menace to the free nations and world economy. The transatlantic bond is still maintained today, but never was this ‘special relationship’ more important than during the Second World War.

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