Sampler Gallery
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                                                                               #6942                                                                                                    Sarah Alexander Sampler               

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Rare Baltimore Maryland Sampler

17 " x 16 1/2".    21 1/4" x 21 " including a modern frame.  Sarah was born "about 1820" in Baltimore, Maryland. South- ern samplers are quite rare and very difficult to find, so Sarah's lovely needlework is quite special.  She stitched her parents names( James and Frances), and the names of her brothers and sisters as well as Mary Ann Banning, who was probably her teacher.   The siblings listed are:  Margaret, Ninian, Catherine, Martha Jane, Sarah, John Andrew and Rebecca.     The names are surrounded with a gorgeous basket of meandering flowers and an outside border of queen stitched strawberries.   
  

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Her verse reads:

"Jesus permit thy gracious name to stand
As the first efforts of an infants hand
And as her fingers o'er the canvass move
Engage her tender heart to seek thy love
With thy dear children may she have a part
And write thy name thyself upon her heart".

Her signature reads: "Sarah Alexanders Sampler  Worked by her in the tenth year of her age".                                                                                                   

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There is some staining in the signature area as well as a few holes in the fabric.   The holes are top center, the left outside edge and the signature area.   But the silks are vibrant and still show a nice sheen.   The only thread loss in is the alphabet area at the top.  The sampler has been mounted on acid-free board.                                                                                                                               $1685

                                                                         #6931                                                                                                      Eliza Slack Quaker Sampler               

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     Attleboro, Massachusetts

26 1/4 " x 22 1/4".    27 3/4 " x 23 3/4 " including a vintage frame.   Eliza was born in Attleboro, Massachusetts in 1800.   Her parents were Samuel Slack and Lucy Miller.   Samuel's ancestors trace back to as early as 1606 in Massachusetts, so the family must have been among the earliest settlers.   Eliza's sampler is a lovely example of a classically Quaker sampler.   All of the motifs are typically Quaker as is the black block lettering and the verse.          
 

 

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Her verse reads:

" Jesus permit thy gracious name to stand
As the first effort of my youthful hand.
And while my fingers o'er this canvass move
Engage my tender heart to seek thy love.
With thy children let me bear a part
And write thy name thyself upon my heart".

She signed her sampler,  "Eliza Slack's Work   1822".                                                                                                   

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While the silks are vibrant and they still retain quite a bit of their sheen, there are several holes in the fabric.   The most noticable of these are in the verse and signature areas and along the top edge of the fabric.  The sampler has been mounted on acid-free board.                                                                                                                                                                                                        $1295

                                                                         #6847                                                                                                18th. Century Dutch Sampler
                                            

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12 " x 17 1/4".    15 1/2" x 20 5/8 " including a 19th century bird's eye maple frame.    I am going to say that this fabulous sampler is circa 1700 - 1730, although I think it might actually be a bit earlier.   The stitcher did put two sets of initials inside the cartouche, but she did not sign her sampler.   The initials are "O.G.B. and A.G.Q.". There is a great deal going on in this wonderful and very early sampler, and most of it is biblical in origin.  Of particular beauty is our stitcher's rendition of Adam & Eve sitting under the apple tree.  The tree and Adam & Eve are quite realistic and very beautiful.  You can actually see Eve handing the apple to Adam.   And they are surrounded by several different types of animals in the Garden of Eden.
 

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One exceptionally unusual motif is a ship that I think is meant to be Noah's Ark.  There are also a man and a woman standing at a well, an incredible phoenix (or maybe it's a griffin), the spies of Canaan, the crucifixion, Moses holding two tablets, and a man climbing some stairs up into a windmill.  But, by far the most unusual motif on this beautiful sampler is what I believe to be a very realisitic monkey.  This is not the "spinning monkey" that is often found on Dutch samplers.  This one is a fairly large, standing monkey. I have never seen anything like it.  And the stitches on this wonderful sampler are exceptionally tiny, making this a bea- utiful piece of needlework history.                                                                                                                     

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The sampler is showing a fair amount of thread loss. This is most noticable in the band just under the last alphabet. But, Moses' tablets have also almost faded away.  There are also some holes in the fabric.  The large ones are in the bottom center border area and at the top just above the letters "R & S".  There are also a few very small holes mostly in the apple tree area.   The sampler has been mounted on acid-free board.                                                                                                                                         $1545

                                                                         #6774                                                                                                Emma Elizabeth Smith Sampler
                                        
                                                          

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16" x 16".   18 1/2" x 18 1/2 " including a modern frame.   Emma Elizabeth Smith was born on May 5, 1857 in Atkinson, Illinois.  That makes this an exceptionally rare sampler.   Emma's parents were John Wesley Smith and Sarah Ann Rummell.  She married Samuel Kiner in December of 1874, and George Edwin Perkins on July 3, 1891.   She was buried in Geneseo, Illinois so she lived her entire life in Illinois.   Emma worked her sampler at the age of 10.   She included an alphabet, numbers, verses, florals, birds, baskets of fruit and a charming pictoral.  There is a lady in a striped dress standing in her garden filled with flowers, birds, dogs and a hillside leading up to her house.  She signed her lovely sampler " Emma Elizabeth Smith 1867."

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Emma's verse reads:
Let all thy Converse be sincere;
Thy Conscience as the Noon Day clear;
Think how the all seeing God thy ways,
And all thy secret thoughts surveys.

Virtue's the chiefest Beauty of the Mind
The noblest Ornament of human kind
Virtue's our Safeguard and our guiding star
That stirs up Reason when our Senses err"                                                                                           

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There is a fair amount of thread loss in Emma's sampler. Most of the losses are in the alphabet and the border.   There is also a cut in the fabric along the right border as well as some darkening to the center of the sampler.  But, in spite of its losses, this is still an exceptionally rare and special piece of needlework.  It has been mounted on acid-free board.
 
                                                                                                                       $765

                                                                             #6746                                                                                                      Mary Turnor Sampler               

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7 1/2 " x 21".   9 1/2 " x 23 " including a modern frame.   Mary's beautiful sampler is a very typical band sampler in that it starts with bands of alphabets and numbers, followed with pro- gressively more elaborate decorative bands.  But it is a very nice band sampler because some of those decorative bands are both very unusual and quite lovely.   The patterns and motifs used are reminiscent of the motifs used in earlier band samplers of the 17th century.  While Mary stitched the final band on the sampler in simple cross stitch, it has the look and feel of a band worked in flame stitch.        

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Mary signed her sampler  "Mary Turnor  1768"
so her needlework is actually quite early.   The back of the sampler has a printed label which reads, "Only conserva- tion framing techniques and archival quality acid-free mat- erials were used in the production of this piece."   I have not taken the sampler out of its frame, but I believe the label to be accurate.

                                                                                                  

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In spite of its age, the sampler appears to be in very good condition.   There is some overall darkening to the fabric, but I think that is partly due to the fabric being dark to start with. There are no holes although the linen is a bit thin in some areas. Because a white mat was used behind a dark fabric, the fabric looks a lot thinner than it is. The fabric is actually quite strong.  The thinning is a very small problem to the condition of the sampler.  The colors are still strong and there is only a very tiny amount of thread loss. This is a very early sampler in good condition with an affordable price.                                                                                                                                                                        $1275

                                                                         #6378                                                                                                      Mary Bradshaw Sampler
                                                  

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16 1/4" x 18 1/2".   22 1/2" x 24 1/2 " including a period  frame.   This is perhaps one of the most charming samplers that I have ever been able to offer.  In the bottom corners of the sampler, Mary has stitched and labeled a "Swiss Boy" and a  "Swiss Girl".  They both wear hats with feathers and are costumed in a very interesting manner.   The boy looks like a pirate while the girl is wearing a turbin.   But what is particularly charming is that it is the girl who is smoking a pipe!   So at the age of 11 in 1844 maybe Mary was the world's first woman's libber!

Mary's sampler also features lots of other wonderfully realistic motifs including birds, florals, baskets of fruit, two really nice seated dogs and two truly beautiful angels. 

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Mary also added a lovely verse which reads:

" Boast not thyself of to-morrow
for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth".

She signed her beautiful sampler " Mary Bradshaw's Work Aged 11 Years  1844".                                                                                                                                                         

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There is an overall darkening to Mary's sampler.   But there are no holes in the fabric and no losses to the silk.  The colors are still quite vibrant in spite of the darkening to the fabric.  So the sampler is still in good condition.                                                                                                                                                                           $1150

                                                                         #6869                                                                                                  Werter Memorial Embroidery
                                            

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12 " x 14"    18 " x 19 3/4 " including a modern oval frame.   Often, needlework of the 18th and 19th centuries was inspired by paintings, poems or books of the time, as is the case with this unusual piece.   The Sorrows of Werter by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was originally published in Germany in 1774.  The English translation was published in 1779.   This very special memorial embroidery was inspired by that book.   And what I find to be absolutely amazing is the fact that this lovely piece was stitched on blue felt.   The monument, and the lady's clothes and hat are appliqued pieces of felt, while her face is painted on paper. The remainder of the piece is stitched with silk.     
  

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The verse on the monument reads:

" Oh!  May the interventions of Charlotte
plead for the decay of Reason in Werter".

The top of the monument shows the name of Werter.  The young lady holds a prayer book and wears a lovely bonnet and a black cape.  The scene is surrounded with willow trees.   The embroidery is circa 1800 - 1820.                                                                                                       

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There are some holes in the felt, mostly near the tree trunk on the right.   There are also a couple of small holes near the top of the monument.   But there is very little thread loss and very little damage to the actual stitching.   This is a wonderful example of how important needlework was to a young girl's education.   The embroidery  has been mounted on acid-free board.                                                                                                                                           $945

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