Imperial War Museum, museum in South London with collections covering conflicts from World War I to the present day. The museum was established in 1917 with the purpose of displaying material related to World War I, which was still being fought. The interest in the project shown by governments of countries with Dominion status in the British Empire, many of whose troops were fighting in the conflict, led to it being named the Imperial War Museum; it was opened by George V on June 9, 1920, in Crystal Palace. Between 1924 and 1935 it was housed in two galleries next to the former Imperial Institute in South Kensington, and it was moved to its present site in 1936. It is now housed in the former Bethlem Royal Hospital, the asylum for the insane also known as Bedlam, which was previously at Moorfields. The surviving centre section of the main hospital building was acquired to house the Imperial War Museum. The central courtyard was covered by a series of glazed roofs to provide the imposing principal exhibition galleries, which are some 25.3 m (77 ft) high.

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