Memorial quilt commemorates World War I family members

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30 October 2018
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car-51577.jpeg World War I commemorative quilt
Karen Cox from Banbury in Oxfordshire has knitted a memorial quilt to commemorate members of her family who died during World War I, and members of the public are invited to come and see it.

Karen Cox from Banbury in Oxfordshire has knitted a memorial quilt to commemorate members of her family who died during World War I, and members of the public are invited to come and see it.

Karen wanted to honour the sacrifice made by ordinary men in World War I and so used their civilian occupations as the inspiration for the design. Names on a war memorial can convey the enormous loss of life but by concentrating on their trades makes the men seem more real. They were tailors, butchers, milkmen, printers, office clerks, railway workers and on. 

There are 21 blocks representing 18 occupations as well as one for those of “unknown” occupation and one each for those who were already soldiers and sailors before the war started. Karen began knitting this quilt in August 2017 and it took about 9 months to complete.  

World War I sacrifices

Karen said of her project: 'I have always intended to knit something to commemorate the sacrifice of my great grandfather Thomas Wade who was killed in 1917. In civilian life he was a glass fitter for the furniture trade. He was an ordinary family man with a wife and 3 children. His death left the family destitute and left its mark on the family over the generations.
 
'I knew that I had a number of other relatives who died in World War 1, but it wasn’t until I started putting my family tree online that I came up with over 50. So instead of knitting something small like a wall-hanging – I decided to do something large to remember all of these men. I decided to focus on their occupations – what they had done before the war.'
 
If you would like to see the quilt, it will be on display at Oxford Yarn Store, 3 North Parade Avenue, Oxford, OX2 6LX during November.  
If you would like to read more about how each block was designed – read Karen’s blog under the label WW1 Memorial Quilt.
 
QUICK LINK: Find out how to trace your World War I ancestors in November 2018 Family Tree magazine.
 
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