Appendix 1: Samplers and Embroidered Pictures from the District of Columbia

Susi B. Slocum

Until 1847, the District of Columbia was an amalgamation of two thriving seaport towns, Alexandria and Georgetown, and the new federal area known as Washington City. The Navy Yard, on the Eastern Branch of the Potomac River, dominated the southeast quadrant of Washington City. Providing various levels and types of education across these localities were churches, church affiliates (such as the Young Ladies’ Academy of Georgetown), private enterprises, and public schools.

Because the position of teacher was one of the few acceptable occupations for women, many chose female education as a career, either temporarily or permanently. Embroidery was a mainstay of early female education, and there is ample evidence that numerous teachers provided various types of needlework instruction in the District of Columbia, beginning in the late eighteenth century and continuing through the first half of the nineteenth century. Unfortunately, only a small proportion of the samplers and embroidered pictures that resulted from this instruction have been located.

Appendix I provides information for 128 known examples of needlework documented as being stitched within the geographical boundaries of the District of Columbia. Arranged alphabetically by maker and city (Alexandria, Georgetown, Washington City), the diverse pieces of schoolgirl embroidery date from 1784 to 1860. Only sixteen are silk embroideries, comprising both embroidered pictures and maps. Three of the four maps are the spectacular “Plan of the City of Washington,” and feature a portrait of George Washington. The remaining 112 schoolgirl embroideries are samplers.

Information in Appendix I about the maker includes whenever possible the full name, age, date of birth, and home place. Each sampler or embroidered picture is further identified by a brief description. Also listed, if known, is the completion or inscribed date, location where the embroidery was made, and current or last known owner. The list segregates the three governing entities and adds a brief section for District of Columbia girls who wrought known embroidery outside of the locality. Information in brackets indicates missing letters, assumed designation of an initial, or known names not marked on the embroidery. Additional ascribed information, such as a misspelled name or known name, is denoted by parentheses. Based on research or stylistic resemblance, some information is marked as “[attributed].”

Documented District of Columbia Samplers and Embroidered Pictures

Italics denote an actual inscription on the needlework.

ALEXANDRIA

Last Name First Name Age Birth Date Date Made Type Where Made Home Place Owner
Atkinson Sarah E. (Elizabeth) 1 OCT 1843 1850-1855 Sampler, pictorial, mourning verse Alexandria? Alexandria and “Rippon Lodge”, Prince William Co. VA Private
Barton Elizabeth 11 1798 ca. 1809 Sampler, architectural, pictorial, verse Alexandria Alexandria Private
Beal Mercy 1796 Band sampler Alexandria or Fairfax Co. VA Private
Bontz Mary Ann 9 22 DEC 1818 JUNE 1828 Sampler, floral, basket, verse “Religion” Alexandria (Mary Lang Muir school) [attributed] Alexandria Private
Brown Sarah N. (Neill) 8 1805 ca. 1813 Sampler, marking Alexandria Alexandria WFCHS
[Campbell] [Anne] 8 JULY 1796 1810-1815 Embroidered picture, Palemon and Lavinia Alexandria (Sarah Eliza Edmonds school) [attributed] Alexandria Private
Carson Ann 10 4 MAY 1808 JULY 1818 Sampler, architectural, (cornucopia motif) Alexandria (Mary Lang Muir school) [attributed] Alexandria B&C
Copper Christiana Davis 1774 ca. 1786 Sampler, motifs, verse Alexandria [attributed] Alexandria MMS
Custis Martha 7 31 DEC 1777 DEC 1784 Sampler, religious, verse “Abington”, Alexandria “Abington”, Alexandria MV
Fifield Rebecca Ann 7 1816 SEPT 1823 Sampler, marking Alexandria Alexandria Private
Fleming Margaret 9 26 APR 1801 ca. 1810 Sampler, architectural, verse Alexandria Alexandria Private
[Fleming] [Margaret] 26 APR 1801 1810-1815 Embroidered picture, classical Alexandria (Sarah Eliza Edmonds school) [attributed] Alexandria Private
Gonsolve Mary Filana 1832 Sampler, architectural, pictorial, verse Alexandria? Private
[Graham] [Elizabeth] 1790 1800-1803 Embroidered map, Plan of the City of Washington Alexandria Alexandria Winterthur
Green Betsy 12 ca. 1786 1798 Sampler, marking, verse Alexandria B&C
Harrison Mary 11 1819 JULY 1830 Sampler, architectural, verse Alexandria (Mary Lang Muir school) [attributed] Alexandria NMAH
Hooff Julia Maria 1798 ca. 1815 Embroidered picture, Dido and Aeneas Alexandria (Sarah Eliza Edmonds school) Alexandria Private
H. [Horwell] A. [Ann] [May] ca. 1780 1798 Sampler, verse “On War” Alexandria [attributed] Alexandria CWF
[Horwell] [Ann] ca. 1819 Sampler, floral Alexandria [attributed] Alexandria B&C
Horwell Sarah M . (May) 8 ca. 1799 1807 Sampler, marking, verse Alexandria Alexandria Private
[Horwell] [Sarah May] 1799 ca. 1809 Sampler, floral Alexandria [attributed] Alexandria B&C
Janney Hannah 19 MAY 1774 1785 Sampler, motifs, verse “On Education” Alexandria [attributed] Alexandria or Loudoun Co. VA B&C
Janney Rebecah 9 14 AUG 1776 1786 Sampler, motifs, verse Alexandria [attributed] Alexandria or Loudoun Co. VA CWF
Leadbeater Anna 9 2 OCT 1842 1852 Sampler, marking Alexandria Va Alexandria NMAH
Leadbeater Anna 10 2 OCT 1842 8 mo 1852 Sampler, marking, Quaker dating Alexandria Alexandria NMAH
Leadbeater Lucy DEC 1838 FEB 1852 Sampler, marking Alex. Va Alexandria Lyceum
Leap Ann 11 MAY 1789 1799 Sampler, marking, motifs, verse Alexandria Alexandria Private
[Leap] [Ann] 11 MAY 1789 1801 Embroidered picture, An Emblem of America Alexandria Alexandria Private
[Lemoine] [Maria Magdalene] 1792 1800-1804 Embroidered map, Plan of the City of Washington Alexandria Alexandria DH-CDA
Mankin Elizabeth 1819 OCT 1832 Sampler, marking Alexandria Alexandria Private
McFarlane Margreter (Margaret) ca. 1823 1831 Sampler, flower basket, verse Alexandria Alexandria Private
McFarlane Elizabeth 6 ca. 1834 1840 Sampler, marking Alexandria Alexandria Private
[McKnight] [Martha Bryan] 7 MAY 1802 1810-1815 Embroidered picture, The Finding of Moses Alexandria (Sarah Eliza Edmonds school) [attributed] Alexandria Private
Muir Mary 12 2 NOV 1805 JUNE 1818 Sampler, architectural, verse “Religion”, (cornucopia motif) Alexandria (Mary Lang Muir school) Alexandria Lyceum
Plummer Ann 9 ca. 1791 1800 Sampler, marking, Quaker motifs Alexandria Alexandria WSHS
Potts H. [Hannah?] 1799 Sampler, map, The State of Maryland Alexandria Alexandria? MdHS
Resler Eve ca. 1786 1800-1804 Embroidered map, Plan of the City of Washington Alexandria Alexandria CWF
Robertson Williamina 9 ca. 1818 SEPT 1827 Sampler, marking, verse Alexandria Alexandria or Fairfax County Private
Rudd Ann Tottington 12 1804 1817 Sampler, marking, verse, “George Washington” Alexandria Alexandria Lyceum
Stabler Mary P. (Pleasants) 11 30 JAN 1809 ca. 1820 Sampler, marking Alexandria Alexandria NMAH
Suter Rebecc[a] 10 1809 APRIL 1819 Sampler, verses, “Religion”, (cornucopia motif) Alexandria District of Columbia (Mary Lang Muir school) [attributed] Alexandria Private
Taylor Hester Dashiell 10 1790 1800 Sampler, marking, architectural, verse, (cornucopia motif) Alexandria Alexandria B&C
Vowell Mary Stewart 8 19 AUG 1823 1831 Sampler, marking Alexandria Alexandria CHS
Wood Ann Maria 7 1825 ca. 1832 Sampler, flower basket, verse Alexandria Alexandria Auction
Wood Marian 13 1805 MAY 1818 Sampler, architectural, floral Alexandria (Mary Lang Muir school) [attributed] Alexandria CWF
Anonymous 1803 Sampler, memorial, Respectfully Addressed to, Mrs Brown On the death of an Infant. Alexa Alexandria Lyceum

GEORGETOWN

Last Name First Name Age Birth Date Date Made Type Where Made Home Place Owner
Abbot Martha D. (Duncan ) 11 1840 1851 Sampler, marking Georgetown Female Seminary (Lydia English) Georgetown Private
Beall Harriet 13 ca. 1788 1801 Embroidered map – A chart of the World Georgetown Georgetown B&C
Beall Harriet 9 9 MAR 1811 FEB 1821 Sampler, pictorial, landscape Georgetown Georgetown MESDA
Boarman Mary Rose 13 ca. 1805 1818 Sampler, marking, religious, verse Young Ladies Academy George Town Georgetown GVM
Brooke Mary Rebecca J. 13 25 JAN 1804 1817 Sampler, marking, [religious, verse, unfinished] Young Ladies Academy George Tow Town “Woodbury Manor,” Leonardtown, Saint Mary’s Co. MD GVM
Burton Hannah E. JULY 1847 Sampler, marking Geo Town Auction
Carroll Mary [Ann] 6 1794 1801 Sampler, marking New Academy George Town “Sweet Air,” Baltimore Co. MD MdHS
[Clemens] [Catherine Ann Lavinia] 17 1840 1857 Wool work, religious – King Solomon Georgetown, Academy of the Visitation Georgetown GVM
Combs Celestia Mary 12 ca. 1804 1816 Sampler, marking, religious, verse Young Ladies Academy Georgetown Chaptico District, Saint Mary’s Co. MD DAR
Conaway Eleanor R. 1834 1847 Wool work, floral wreath Georgetown Prince George’s Co, MD Auction
Copley Mary 12 1817 APRIL 1830 Sampler, architectural Georgetown D. C. Georgetown Auction
Dellaway Julia Ann OCT 1832 Sampler, marking, floral, verse George-town Georgetown Private
[Dunlop] [Elizabeth Peter] 1771 ca. 1790 Embroidered picture, floral Georgetown [attributed] “Tudor Place”, Georgetown Auction
Durkee Elenor 9 12 NOV 1800 1810 Sampler, marking, religious, verse Young Ladies Academy Georg Town Baltimore PMA
Fearson Mary Elizabeth 1824 NOV 18 – – (ca. 1834) Sampler, marking, verse Miss Bootes’s Seminary Georgetown Georgetown DAR
Jackson Artridge Priscilla 9 14 JUN 1820 JULY 1829 Sampler, architectural, (shuttered windows), motifs, verse Georgetown Female Seminary (Lydia English) [attributed] Georgetown DAR
Jackson Emily M. 25 SEP 1798 1808 Sampler, marking, religious, verse young Ladies Academy Georgetown Leonardtown, Saint Mary’s Co. MD GVM
[Jameson] [Eliza] 1785 1800-1804 Embroidered picture, pastoral Georgetown, Young Ladies Academy Cornwallis Neck, Charles Co. MD GVM
Kurtz Sarah 9 1795 1804 Sampler, marking, motif, verse Georgetown NMAH
Laird Barbara L. 1795 ca. 1807 Sampler, marking, floral, verse Georgetown [attributed] Georgetown B&C
Laird Margaret 1797 ca. 1809 Sampler, marking, floral, motifs, verse Georgetown [attributed] Georgetown B&C
[Lalor] [Maria Teresa] ca. 1793 1800-1804 Embroidered picture, pastoral Georgetown, Young Ladies Academy Philadelphia Private
Laurence Mary Elizabeth 16 FEB 1812 1829 Sampler, marking, floral, (parrot motif) Young Ladies Academy George Town Georgetown Private
Lipscomb Sarah Ann 10 MAR 1820 ca. 1830 Sampler, marking, pictorial Geo Town Georgetown Auction
Meem Mary (Margaret) 14 17 OCT 1821 1836 Sampler, pictorial, (cornucopia motif) George Town DC Female Seminary (Lydia English) Georgetown NMAH
Morton Margaret Isabella ca. 1830 NOV 12 1838 Sampler, marking Georgetown Georgetown Dealer
Neale Eleanora 15 1808 1823 Sampler, floral, verse, (parrot motif) Young Ladies Academy George Town Charles Co. MD GVM
Nicholls E. (Elizabeth) 9 8 FEB 1819 ca. 1828 Sampler, marking, verse Georgetown Female Seminary (Lydia English) Georgetown Dealer
Orme Elizabeth 9 ca. 1825 NOV 1833 Sampler, pictorial, verse, (cornucopia motif) Georgetown Female Seminary (Lydia English) [attributed] Georgetown NMAH
Ould Paulina 11 24 MAR 1824 ca. 1835 Sampler, marking George Town District of Colubia Georgetown Auction
[Queen] [Catharine F.] ca. 1788 1800-1804 Embroidered picture, pastoral Academy of the Visitation, Georgetown. D.C. Eastern Branch of Potomac, Prince George’s Co. MD GVM
Ritter E. A. 12 ca. 1812 1825 Sampler, architectural, verse Georgetown D C Georgetown Private
Scaggs Ann Lucretia Mayo 12 ca. 1819 MAR 1831 Sampler, marking, floral basket, verse Georgetown Georgetown Private
Scott Mary Ann MAR 1831 Sampler, marking, architectural, (shuttered windows), motifs, verse George Town DC. Female Seminary (Lydia English) [attributed] Georgetown Dealer
Waring Eleanor 11 2 JUN 1808 1819 Sampler, floral, verse, (parrot motif) Ladies Academy George Town Middle Brook Mills, Montgomery Co. MD and Georgetown Auction
Anonymous ca. 1800-1804 Embroidered picture, pastoral Georgetown, Young Ladies Academy [attributed] Dealer
Anonymous ca 1813 Embroidered picture, Wisdom Directing Innocence to the Temple of Learning Georgetown? DAR

WASHINGTON CITY

Last Name First Name Age Birth Date Date Made Type Where Made Home Place Owner
Adams Elizabeth George 13 13 SEP 1822 MAR 1836 Sampler, marking Washington City Spotsylvania VA FAMCC
Blair Sarah Jane 9 1817 1827 Sampler, marking, verse Washington City Washington City Private
Bohlayer Mary Christeen 13 19 JAN 1828 1842 Sampler, architectual, (shuttered windows), verse – Navy Yard area Washington City DC Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Borrows Mary Ann 9 12 FEB 1802 JULY 1811 Sampler Mrs. Gray’s School in the city of Washington Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Borrows Susan (Susannah) 1788 JUNE 1803 Sampler, marking, motifs Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Boswell Maria 12 4 APR 1800 AUG 1812 Sampler, architectural, verse – Navy Yard Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Brightwell Maria OCT 1827 Sampler, marking, motifs Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Brown Ann Eliza 10 AUG 1831 JAN 1842 Sampler, figurative, verse Washington City D.C. Washington City Private
Bryant Mary M. 1836 JULY 1848 Embroidered map, Map of ASIA Washington M.A. Tyson & Sisters Seminary Washington, D.C. Dealer
Carbary (Carbery) Ann Asenath 7 JULY 1828 Sampler, marking Washington City Washington City HSCC
Carbery (Carberry) Helen M. (Mary) ca. 1822 AUG 1832 Sampler, marking, architectural D C Washington City HSCC
Carlon Ann MAY 1812 Sampler, fruit basket, verse “On Virtue” Washington City Washington City CWF
Carter Sarah Ann JAN 1834 Sampler, architectural, (shuttered windows), verse Washington City Washington City? Dealer
Cassady Catherine ca. 1804 FEB 1814 Sampler, architectural, verse – Navy Yard Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area MMA
Cassedy Margaret A. ca. 1815 OCT 1826 Sampler, architectural, verse – Navy Yard Washington Washington City, Navy Yard area MMA
Clubb Charlotte 12 1801 JULY 1813 Sampler, architectural, verse – Navy Yard Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area AM
Crowley Julia Ann 10 14 DEC 1799 FEB 1810 Sampler, architectural, verse – Navy Yard Washington Navy Yard Washington City, Navy Yard area CWF
Crowley Julia Ann 13 14 DEC 1799 APRIL 1813 Sampler, architectural, verse – Navy Yard Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area DAR
Cruttenden Harriet Lay ca. 1804 1818 Sampler, marking, motif Washington Auction
Dove Elizabeth S. 13 1807 SEPT 1820 Sampler, architectural, verse Washington City Washington City Private
Dove Harriet ca. 1805 MAY 1817 Sampler, marking, verse Washing City Washington City Private
Ensey Martha 10 FEB 1803 APRIL 1813 Sampler, architectural, verse – Navy Yard Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area Auction
Hancock Ella 9 ca. 1844 1853 Sampler, marking Public Schools of the City of Washington Washington, D.C. Private
Holleran Kate A. 6 OCT 1848 ca.1860 Embroidered picture, wool work, religious Washington DC Washington, D.C. Auction
James [attributed] Amelia ca.1826 Sampler, architectural, verse – Navy Yard Was – – – – – – – (thread disintegration) Washington City Private
Latrobe Juliana E. 8 or 9 17 JULY 1804 JULY 1813 Sampler, marking, verse Probably Washington DC [or Baltimore] MdHS
Lacey Julia [Winona] 8 1840 1848 Sampler, marking St Vince—. Sch—. (St. Vincent’s School), Washington, D.C. Washington, D.C. NMAH
[L]awrenc[e] [Ju]liann[a] ca. 1820 JULY 1830 Sampler, architectural, verse, St. Patricks Church Washington City Washington City CWF
Masi Caroline R[osella] 10 1837 NOV 1847 Sampler, marking St Joseph’s School E. Street Washington D.C. Washington, D.C. GVM
M. [Massoletti] J. [Julietta] M. [Marie] 16 JAN 1825 1835-40 Silk embroidery, floral Washington City Private
O’Brien Julia 12 1800 JUNE 1812 Sampler, architectural, (shuttered windows), verse – Navy Yard Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area Auction
Ourand Alletha F. (Frances) F. (Findley) 12 26 MAY 1827 MAY 1839 Sampler, marking, verse Washington City Washington City Private
Prout Mary 7 1810 APRIL 1817 Sampler, marking Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Ridgway Mary 1839 ca. 1850 Embroidered picture, wool work, mourning School of St Vincent, Washington, D.C. Washington City Private
Rothwell Laura E. 8 4 FEB 1825 1834 Sampler, marking Washington City Washington City Private
Simmons [Margaret] C. 8 7 JAN 1819 OCT 1827 Sampler, marking, motif Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area NMAH
Simmons Margaret C. 9 7 JAN 1819 JAN 1828 Sampler, architectural, (shuttered windows), verse – Navy Yard Washington City D.C. Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Slade Jane Maria 6 9 SEP 1819 JULY 1826 Sampler, marking Washington District of Columbia Washington City Auction
Sutherland Charlotte DEC 1809 Sampler, floral, verse Washington possibly Washington City, D.C. Auction
Tait Mary 9 3 AUG 1815 JUNE 1825 Sampler, architectural, (shuttered windows), verse – Navy Yard Washington City D. C. Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Thomp[s]on Eliza 3 DEC 1809 1823 Sampler, marking Washington City Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Thompson Eliza 13 3 DEC 1809 SEPT 1823 Sampler, architectural, (shuttered windows), verse – Navy Yard Washington City D.C. Washington City, Navy Yard area Private
Trunnel Sarah Eliza Ann 11 1813 ca. 1825 Sampler, floral wreath, verse Washington City? Georgetown DAR
Vonderlehr Catharine ca. 1824 JUNE 1837 Sampler, floral St Vincent School Washington City Auction
Ward Ann 1826 Sampler, floral wreath, verse Washington City Washington City CWF
Waring Eliza M. 1828 Sampler, floral, verse Miss Pennell’s school Washington DC Washington City Private
Wendell Anna Mary 9 8 SEP 1845 1854 Sampler, marking Washington D.C. Washington, D.C. Private
Whitney Sarah Malvina 8 28 DEC 1819 DEC 1828 Sampler, marking, motif, verse Washington City Washington City Private
Wilson Charity FEB 1835 Sampler, marking, verse Washington.DC.NY (Navy Yard) PMA
Anonymous After 1820 Sampler, marking, basket Washington DC B&C

Samplers and Embroidered Pictures Worked by District of Columbia Girls at Non-Local Schools

Last Name First Name Age Birth Date Date Made Type Where Made Home Place Owner
[Balch] [Jane Whann] 14 FEB 1805 ca. 1819 Embroidered picture, Palemon and Lavinia Lititz, PA Moravian Girls’ School Georgetown DH-CDA
English Lydia 1802 ca. 1816 Embroidered picture, memorial Lititz, PA Moravian Girls’ School Georgetown Private
I[rwin] H[annah] 11 22 MAY 1792 1803 Sampler, Quaker motifs Weston, Westtown Boarding School, PA Alexandria RH
Stabler Elizabeth 13 1797 1810 Sampler, marking, Quaker motifs, verse Sandy Spring, Montgomery Co. MD Alexandria SSM

 

Key to Owner Abbreviations

Am American Museum in Britain, Bath, UK
B&C American Samplers by Ethel Stanwood Bolton & Eva Johnston Coe
CHS Cohasset Historical Society, Cohasset, MA
CWF Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, Williamsburg, VA
DAR National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, Washington, D. C.
DH-CDA Dumbarton House, The National Society of The Colonial Dames of America, Washington, D. C.
FAMCC Fredericksburg Area Museum and Cultural Center, Fredericksburg, VA
GVM Georgetown Visitation Monastery Archives, Washington, D. C.
HSCC Historical Society of Carroll County, Westminster, MD
Lyceum The Lyceum, Alexandria’s History Museum, Alexandria, VA
MdHS Maryland Historical Society, Baltimore, MD
MESDA Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts, Winston-Salem, NC
MMA The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY
MMS Manassas Museum System, Manassas, VA
MV George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate, Museum & Gardens, Mount Vernon, VA
NMAH National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C.
PMA Philadelphia Museum of Art
RH Ruggles House, Columbia Falls, Maine
SSM Sandy Spring Museum, Sandy Spring, MD
Winterthur Henry Francis du Pont Winterthur museum, Garden & Library, Wilmington, DE
WFCHS Winchester-Frederick County Historical Society, Winchester, VA
WSHS Washington State Historical Society, Tacoma, WA