2 Replies Latest reply on May 6, 2021 12:00 PM by Rebecca Brown

    Seeking GIs who came from Burtonwood Airbase

    Geoff Brown Newbie

      I am researching  Pan Africanism in Manchester during and after World War II. The best-known Pan African activists in the city were Ras Makonnen and Dr Peter Milliard. Makonnen’s autobiography, ‘Pan-Africanism from within’, describes the many initiatives he and Milliard and others undertook, including the restaurants he established of which the best known was the Cosmopolitan.  I’m looking for information about African American GIs based at the Burtonwood airbase near Warrington, the largest US air base outside the US. They would have escaped the colour bar in the base and in many pubs and clubs in Warrington, travelling just 30 minutes by train to get to Manchester and then walking a couple of minutes to the Cosmopolitan. My theory is that they helped make the Cosmopolitan a success and thereby assisted in funding the 5th Pan African Congress held in Manchester in October 1945 which issued the historic call for the liberation of colonial Africa. I think it likely that they will have made friends, black and white, and brought their music and much else enriching the life of the city. I would be grateful for any details or suggestions where I might look for this information.