*

*

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Keep Calm And Carry On....

Several readers have asked what is the origination and meaning of the Keep Calm and Carry On entrance carpet, displayed on my sidebar.



The Keep Calm and Carry On was a motivational poster produced by the British government in 1939 during the beginning of World War II, but never used.
I was rediscovered in 2000 and has been re-issued by a number of private sector companies, and used as the decorative theme for a range of products.

The poster was initially produced in 1939 during the beginning of World War II, and was intended as a "last case scenario" to be used only should the Nazi's succeed in invading Great Britain, in order to stiffen resolve.

Two and a half million copies were printed, although the poster was distributed in limited numbers.
The designer of the poster is not known.
The poster was third in a series of three. The previous two posters from the series, "Your Courage, Your Cheerfulness, Your Resolution Will Bring Us Victory" and "Freedom is in Peril", were issued and used across the country for motivational purposes.

They were designed to have a uniform device, be a design associated with the Ministry of Information, have a unique and recognizable typography,with a message from the King to his people.

In 2000 a copy of the "Keep Calm and Carry On" poster was rediscovered in Barter Books, a second-hand book shop in Northumberland. Since Crown Copyright expires on artistic works created by the UK government after 50 years, the image is now public domain.

The popularity of posters, and motivational merchandise has been a much sought after example of British character "Stiff Upper Lip" attitude, a much needed example in today's financial recession.
Photo credit : Graham Turner Info credit: Wikipedia

18 comments:

DJan said...

I think it's a great motto, and I'm going to take it to heart, for myself, even if I'm not a Brit. Keeping calm and carrying on is pretty much all one can do in trying times, right?

Brit Gal Sarah said...

So funny you should blog this today. I saw a t-shirt with this on in the BBC America catalogue last night and said to the Hubster I needed one!

I think it's a great motto and design and was aware of the interesting history.

Andora said...

I am glad you posted the info..very interresting..I really enjoy reading your blog...

Flat Creek Farm said...

Glad you posted this! I purchased a planner/binder on Etsy today with this very same motto. I didn't know the origin at the time, but I liked it! -Tammy

Sunny said...

Jolly good show! I love your carpet.
Sunny :)

donna baker said...

I still remember the Queen and Queen Mum during the war as they stayed and comforted their countrymen.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi there, We're home from our 2-day Hendersonville adventure. The plumbing is fixed and the folks are happy (I hope).

There's alot of truth in that motto, Jo. I like it... They say that when you get in an uncomfortable situation, it's best to walk away and be CALM--before dealing with it while angry or upset... THEN--after the calm sets in, we can carry on!!! GREAT Quote.

Hugs,
Betsy

Miss Daisy said...

I love that! And what a great reminder to me as I'm yelling at my daughter to get to bed! LOL. I need to keep calm and carry On! Thanks for the history lesson and reminder. I also love your calming music!

L. D. Burgus said...

Thanks for the info on that. That was a very serious time in history and I can't imagine how they seriously thought they were going to have to use that poster. Having had my father in WW 2, it really meant a lot to me to see that we didn't have to see that poster used. I am somewhat speechless to think about it all.

bennie and patsy said...

Someone should hand these on t- shirts out at town hall meetings. LOL
Patsy

midwesttomidlands said...

I have that poster in my kitchen. Love it and great story.

Limey said...

Oh, I love this! Love that doormat! Must find it and buy! Thanks for sharing.

from our front porch... said...

I just saw this poster the other day and wondered about the orgin! I just love it on your floor mat! Yes, it is so very conducive to our world today!
Misha

Wanda said...

An uplifting post for anyone to appreciate!

notesfromthefrugaltrenches said...

Thank you for the History. The image and words always make me happy to be English - we are so calm and we just carry on in troubled times! I'm preparing to leave the UK for a while, must get a copy of this poster before I go!

McGillicutty said...

Hello Fellow Ex-patter... just discovered your blog and it's super! You have all the things going on there that I miss... I'm lazy and don't often keep up with home as much as I'd like to. LOVE THE RUG!!! that's so us.
Check out my blog..great to "meet" you.. Ali.

therealbobthought said...

when it comes to WWII mementos this is indeed a classic, thanks for sharing.

Denise said...

Fascinating, I had never heard that before Jo. Thanks for the info.