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Review of American Museum

American Museum
Ranked #16 of 168 things to do in Bath
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Situated in a glorious Georgian manor house within 120 acres of wonderful grounds and stunning scenery, the American Museum in Britain is home to the finest collection of Americana outside of the United States. Visitors learn about the Founding Fathers, the pioneers West, Native Americans and the Slavery issue which lead to the Civil War in the new interactive American Heritage Exhibition. This precedes a series of attractive period rooms dating from colonial times until the eve of the Civil War. These rooms set the scene on domestic life throughout the exciting settlement and independence years of America and are accessible via a lift for those who have difficultly with the manor house stairs. The museum has an outstanding quilt collection which allows us to alter the permanent textile display from time to time (40-50 quilts are on show each year) and an inspiring Folk Art gallery intrigues visitors with whirligigs, cigar store Indians, weathervanes and even a Mohawk ship figurehead! Main season Mid-March to November, Tuesday -Sunday, 12-5pm. Cafe & Gardens open from 10.30am. Closed Mondays except during August and Bank Holidays. Christmas season Mid-November to Mid-December, Tuesday -Sunday, 12-4.30pm. Cafe open from 11am. Closed Mondays. Free shuttle bus from Bath city centre to the museum throughout afternoon, see website for schedule.
Reviewed May 16, 2014

The American museum is a little "out of town" but well worth making the journey up Bathwick Hill to Clavendon Manor. It is set in a large building within beautiful grounds. It shows the history of the development of the USA from the days of the early pioneers onwards. Various rooms show interesting aspects of American life over the years. I have visited the museum several times over the past 42 years and always see something new each time I go.

Thank Hadley94
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 14, 2014

What a lovely day out this place provides. A beautiful old house, in lovely grounds, amid glorious countryside. The museum is full of goodies, and kept us enthralled for hours. We went specially to see the exhibition of work by Kaffe Fassett, which was a real treat, full of vibrant colours and textures, so innovative and cheerful.
Lunch in the little restaurant was excellent. A delicious home-made quiche, and some of the nicest, freshest salad we'd ever tasted in a cafe. Full of grated apple, carrot and other crunchy morsels. Not just grreens and tomato. It was truly yummy. Recommended thoroughly, especially if the weather is good, to enjoy the gardens. But allow plenty of time.

Thank Patricia G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 4, 2014

As a family we have visited many different museums. The museum has interesting displays and facts about American history but was not jam packed with artefacts like some other museums. Although not a problem it does mean that the visit does not last as long. Having said that the guides in each room spontaneously interacted with us with some very interesting facts. The lady who served us in the cafe could do with some customer service training as did not greet me, smile, or say thank you. Found the grounds to be really tranquil with lots of birdsong. Learnt something new so always a good thing.

Thank Mintylou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 3, 2014

The American Museum in Britain was founded in 1961 in a 19th.century manor house in a superb location of 125 acres overlooking the Limpley Stoke valley, with stunning views. The exhibits span U.S. history from the early settlers to the 20th.centrury. A major feature are exhibits of American textiles and quilts of the 19th.Century. There are lovely collections of American folk art (particularly moccasins), furniture and paintings. This is the only museum of Americana outside the USA. There are a series of period rooms, but you should note that the Museum does not open until after midday, but there is a very good light meal restaurant on site, with reasonable prices, and if the weather is fine the 125 acres of parkland offers extra value for the £8 entry fee. The period rooms are well laid out with good guides.We were impressed by the Greek Revival Room, with an unusual Pianoforte cabinet (1818), the Country Store, the bedrooms, and the maps. The museum is on three floors and is open 12.00-17.00hrs, car parks closing at 17.30. The cafe provides light lunches from 12-14.00hrs, and teas, cold drinks and ice cream are available till 17.00 hrs. There is a small shop, with good selection of quilts for sale, and we were fortunate that there was an extra exhibition of the vibrant and highly coloured knitting of Kaffe Fassett (a Californian based in the UK). There is a shuttle bus to /from the museum and good parking facilities.

Thank malholme
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 30, 2014

I visited the American Museum again for another look at their quilt collection. It is just amazing and very inspirational for a self-confessed quilt addict. I love all the other exhibits too, especially the Shaker rooms and the artefacts from the native American nations. Talking to the volunteer guides is a revelation as their knowledge, friendliness and enthusiasm for all things American is outstanding.

As a bonus, there is a terrific exhibition of the work of Kaffe Fassett on at the moment. The colours and sheer exuberance of the knitting and quilting on show is amazing. The quality of the exhibitions at the museum is unbelievable. A few years ago, I saw the exhibition of costumes worn by Marilyn Monroe - a very rare opportunity indeed.

It's not easy to find but please make the effort and this time of year, you will be rewarded by the spectacular bluebells and a great cultural experience. I cannot recommend it enough if Americana is of interest.

2  Thank Honeypot54321
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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