Monday, August 13, 2007

New Piece of Quilt History

I just finished a book by Sheila Allan "Diary of a Girl in Changi". Seventeen year old Australian Sheila, her step mother and father were captured by the Japanese when Singapore surrendered early in World War II. Sheila determined from the start that she would keep a diary and hide it so it wouldn't be confiscated.

Also from the start, the older women, mostly British, and the Red Cross were determined to keep spirits up and alleviate as much boredom as possible. There were plays and concerts and even a "circus" with elaborate costumes. An enduring part of these projects is a series of three quilts, the Changi Quilts, stitched by the women on recycled rice bags. The quilts were given to the Red Cross for the wounded Australian, British and Japanese soldiers. Changi Quilts

I won't spoil the book for you just in case you want to read it. I knew nothing about the Japanese imprisoning civilians during WWII and, especially, I knew nothing of these quilts. Here are prime examples of how much emotion goes into the making of a quilt!

Oh, and we had clear skies for the meteor showers: wow, wow, wow!

1 comment:

Mary Emma Allen said...

Thanks for this bit of information. How coincidental...or are things like this really coincidental? I was listening to a CD of quilting songs the other day my daughter had in her car. One of the songs was about the quilts prisoners in Japanese camps made. I told myself I had to research this topic. And here is your blog post and the name of a book about the quilts.