Wooden letter opener

Carved wooden letter opener, one piece and stained. Pattern on handle includes star, heart, maple leaf and the initials G. d. M. Likely carved in Petawawa Internment Camp by Italian Canadian internee Gabriele Di Maurizio.

Di Maurizio was a citizen (a naturalized British subject), who was the first president of the St. Catharines lodge of the Order Sons of Italy.

Many internees brought wooden objects home to their families, including elaborate ships, mirrors, painted reliefs, jewellery boxes and serving trays. Letters from the camps relate how many of the men occupied their time by carving wood.