What’s in name? Everything as far as John Miles of Swansea is concerned. For years now, he has been researching his family tree and, in that time, learnt of a unique heirloom that has been lost for about 80 years.
Made by 15-year-old Rachel Miles in 1896, a large colourful
needlework sampler detailed the names and birthdates of a number of
Mr Miles' ancestors. It also gave the name of their home,
But any hopes of finding it after such a long time must have been
minimal - until a phone call following a find at the Carmarthen
Antiques Fair on April 28-29.
Someone who had been touring the fair noticed something
interesting when they came to the stand of North Wales antiques
dealer Clive Phillips. There was a colourful framed sampler with
the name Llangefelach worked in wool at the top complete with the
name Miles underneath.
Mr Phillips, who had bought the sampler at the NEC in Birmingham
only a week before, had decided to take it to the Carmarthen fair
after realising that Llangefelach was the name of a farm and
village near Carmarthen.
After numerous Saturday evening telephone calls, Mr Miles was
finally located and told of the find - needless to say, he was
first through the door on Sunday morning.
Absolutely delighted with his purchase, he was further thrilled to
find his own name, John Miles, shared by a forebear born in 1837,
worked into it.
"This is a wonderful story," said Carol Pugh of Towy Events who
organise the fair. "Such samplers with so much family history
worked into them are rare in themselves and the chances of it being
reunited with a family after so long must be very slim."
By Stephanie Harris
Antiques Trade Gazette is the weekly bible of the fine art and antiques industry. Read articles like this every week in the Antiques Trade Gazette or ATG app. Click here to subscribe today.
Back to top