As allied nations speaking a common tongue, I imagine there were a great number of liaisons between British women and American soldiers, airmen and sailors.

Most British men were serving overseas. Over 1 million US troops were stationed in the UK.

Young, English women had left their home to work in the cities...

How many of these women became mothers and what happened to the offspring?

Did the US allow these children to become U.S. citizens?

Did (m)any of these relationships eventually become marriages?

How did this affect the demographics of the UK i.e. did the loss of thousands of women who left the UK as war-brides negatively impact Britain?

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    May I suggest you edit to clarify if you are interested only in soldiers or all servicemen (sailors, pilots etc).
    – AllInOne
    Commented Jun 22, 2016 at 19:24
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    Relevant: jstor.org/stable/2651201?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents Commented Jun 22, 2016 at 19:24
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    You might look at the article on US Birthright citizenship. As of the mid-40's, if the father is American and the parents are married, the child is a citizen. If they weren't married at birth, things get a bit muddier, so it depends on the circumstances.
    – T.E.D.
    Commented Jun 23, 2016 at 0:31

3 Answers 3


Concerning part of the above question:

Did (m)any of these relationships eventually become marriages?

The National WWII Museum article "American Soldiers Arrive in Great Britain, January 26, 1942" closes with the following information:

Over 60,000 British women married American servicemen and came to the United States, many children were born from relationships formed during the war and we continue to enjoy a “Special Relationship” with our allies across the pond.

So there were at least three times the number of marriages as births attributed to American servicemen.



About 20k children were born, 1k of them black. The white children usually went back to America and grew up with their biological parents. The mixed children generally stayed in the UK due to miscegenation laws in many US states.

Took about 5 seconds to google this

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    "Took about 5 seconds to google this" - And yet your answer is incredibly poor. One would expect that with the ease of finding the information you would have had more time to refine your answer. This is not a trivial question, nor is it trivially googleable even if information can be found quickly. The average reader cannot readily verify the source you linked to know that the information is reliable. Commented Jun 23, 2016 at 14:22
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    I guess the part that most intrigues me is how many of the new mothers emigrated to the U.S. The reference you provided does cite the numbers you mentioned but it does not reflect the numbers of the mothers and children who stayed in the UK and the numbers that emigrated. Also it seemed to focus on the children of black service-members who only represented a small minority. Thank you for the link, but much of the question remains unanswered.
    – iAndelin
    Commented Jun 23, 2016 at 14:22
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    It seems implied that nearly all of them went to the us if able to. It'd be hard to raise children as a single mother back then.
    – D J Sims
    Commented Jun 23, 2016 at 15:36
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    The source here seems to be uncertain. The national WW2 museum website (nww2m.com/2012/01/…) suggests 60,000 British women married and emigrated to USA. I imagine the 20k babies number is low? Commented Jun 23, 2016 at 21:27
  • Good point. I have no idea why the sources contradict each other. My source cites nothing after 1948 and large US forces stayed in England until 1990. Maybe your source includes postwar marriages.
    – D J Sims
    Commented Jun 23, 2016 at 22:38

The U.K. Demographic pyramid from 2011 clearly shows a baby boom in the years 1946 to 1948, so the loss of war brides to the U.S. would seem to not have significantly affected its demographics or economy. This is as expected, as the number of females lost as war brides was muh smaller than the number of men lost as war casualties.

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