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Embroidered Sampler

1939

Embroidered verse with additional floral embellishments on plain cloth. The verse reads:

‘Keep Smiling
Keep smiling, my darling,
Wherever you may be,
Keep hoping my loved one,
Keep thinking of me.
Keep wishing Love’s wishes,
And they will come true,
Keep praying for me,
As I’m praying for You.’

The piece was made by Will Bower while serving in India during WWII, as part of his recuperation from frequent malarial attacks. He sent this and other hand stitched pieces home as gifts to his wife, May Bower, herself an experienced needlewoman.

Needlework was often used as a method for therapy for soldiers recovering from illness and injury. It promoted fine motor skills and kept the mind occupied during recovery.