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2nd Air Division History Seminar

In 2023 we celebrate 60 years since the official opening of the first Memorial library dedicated to the 2nd Air Division in Norwich, Norfolk.

To celebrate this the American Library will host a seminar focused on the 2nd Air Division, its history and legacy, placing the 2nd Air experience within the broader context of the experience of WW2 in East Anglia and WW2 for the US Army Air Forces. We are also interested in exploring other histories present in the 2nd Air Division Archive, for example the experience of local people who lived near air bases or American Red Cross personnel who came to East Anglia.

The seminar will take place on Saturday 18 November 2023. It will be a blended event with speakers and a live audience at the library in Norwich, as well as attendees and speakers who will join us online.

We welcome submissions of papers that will last 30 minutes, all formats will be considered.

Suggested topics include but are not restricted to:

  • African American Service Personnel in WW2
  • Art and War
  • Commemoration and Memory
  • Digitizing our WW2 history
  • LGBTQ lives in the US Military in WW2
  • Healthcare in the USAAF
  • Interpreting WW2 for different audiences
  • Landscapes of WW2 East Anglia
  • Love and Friendship
  • Life in the Air
  • Life on an Airbase
  • Post War Life back in the USA
  • Psychology, trauma and the effects of war
  • The American Effect - culture and society after the Friendly Invasion
  • Women and the 2nd Air Division
  • 2nd Air Division objects and artefacts in Gallery, Library, Archive and Museum collections


Please submit a paper proposal of not more than 300 words and biographical information of not more than 100 words by 25 August to Please indicate if you wish to attend in person or participate digitally. The seminar will be available live online via zoom webinar and will be recorded. You will be informed by September 6 if your proposal has been accepted.

If you have any queries prior to submission, please contact the library for clarification.

American Library, Memorial to the 2nd Air Division, 8th Air Force, United States Army Air Forces

The library was first opened in 1963 as a living memorial to the nearly 7,000 American personnel from the 2nd Air Division who were based in East Anglia during World War II and were killed in action. Our aim is to honour their memory and be a place of cultural exchange between the people of the United Kingdom, specifically East Anglia, and the people of the United States of America.

The library is funded by the Memorial Trust of the 2nd Air Division, United States Army Air Forces. This is a registered British charity established in 1945 by officers of the 2nd Air Division with the intention of establishing a permanent living memorial in Norfolk.

Discover more on

The 2nd Air Division Archive

This is a collection of over 30,000 original photographs, letters, memoirs and other ephemera, as well as sound recordings. The archive has been almost entirely digitised thanks to a legacy by veteran Bernard Newmark and is available online at our digital archive. The physical archive is on deposit at the Norfolk Record Office. The NRO is the county archive for Norfolk. NRO collects and preserves unique archives relating to the history of Norfolk and make them accessible across the world.

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