This past weekend I went on a family vacation to Savannah, GA. It was my brother’s 21st birthday and we wanted to do something fun to celebrate. On Friday we went to the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum, which is all about WWII memories and history.
Most of the museum was filled with planes and stories of the people who flew, worked on, or planned the flights of those planes. But one section was devoted to a family that helped people escape Germany. They hid Jews and stranded Allies. All of this was interesting, but I’m not easily moved by history even if they are moving stories.
In the corner of the replicated living room, there was an exhibit of embroidery, which immediately piqued my interest. Me? Embroidery? I wonder why… It turned out that this embroidery was the last non-confiscated embroidery of a concentration camp. AND I took pictures.
I had no idea that such things went on. The stories…. oh how many stories have been untold? How many women made it through the war because of their little embroideries? Their little pieces of the old life and sanity. When such horror faced them every single day, there was a little piece of creativity, talent and heart reminding them that they were human. They did have a life before this and there was still life awaiting them beyond the war. Those are the stories I want to hear in a history book. Not facts and figures. I want people. These little embroideries were like little reminders that each woman was one not alone. They were in the camp together and each one had a memory tied to a day before the concentration camp. A day like Lotty’s 3 May.
Below: Number 16
I don’t have a picture of 1 or 4.
Below: Number 6
Below: Numbers 7, 11, and 12
Below: Numbers 8, 10, and 13
Below: Numbers 14 and 15 (I didn’t get a picture of 9)Wow. Those completely blew my mind. I have been so concerned about my size of stitches and finishing my little blocks so that I can have a pretty throw quilt. Does it matter?????? No. These women, their stories and the weak imagining of the circumstances they embroidered in are incomparable to my comfortable life. I do believe one of the strongest life lessons learned here is don’t complain. And there are so many more to be learned that I need to just stew in the thoughts some more.