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Stephen & Carol Huber: 17th - 19th Century Needlework

Marblehead, MA sampler from Stephen & Carol Huber

Jane Bird
Needlework Sampler
Marblehead, MA dated 1802

"The incomparable samplers of Marblehead have no foreign counterparts and represent American girlhood embroidery at its best." Quote from Betty Ring's Girlhood Embroidery.

Jane worked this very pleasing, rare and graphic, solidly stitched black background sampler at Martha Barber's school in Marblehead, MA. It is one of two known with identical composition, the other one was also worked in 1802 by a 12 year-old girl and is in the Cooper Hewitt Museum. See Betty Ring's book Girlhood Embroidery pg. 137, fig. 154.

At the top is a depiction of Aurora, the Goddess of Dawn in her chariot and five finely dressed figures, probably representing a family and another couple. The bottom section depict a man, hat-in-hand, greeting a lady with her dog, a man on horseback with his dog, another couple with their cow and sheep, and a dog bounding after a stag. A three sided undulating floral border surrounds the pictorial sections.

Jane Miller Bird (1790-1843) was the oldest of five children born to Daniel Bird (c.1760-1802) and Sarah Blaney (1770-1863). In 1802, at age 12, Jane worked this sampler, and at age 19 married sea captian Thomas Quiner (1785-), and they had one child, Jane Quiner (1813-1888). She died in March of 1843 at age 53, in Marblehead.

Silk on linen 22 ¾" x 17 4/4" in a period frame, probably original.


(860) 388-6809


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