Silk-on-Linen Needlework Sampler
Worked by Polly Smith, Mary Balch's School, Providence, Rhode Island, worked in 1785
Height 13 7/8 inches, width 11 1/8 inches. Inscribed Virtue out = shines the stars.
Christie's, New York, 29 May 2002, lot 92
M. Finkel & Daughter
Miss Mary Balch (1762-1831) began teaching in Providence, Rhode Island in 1782. The present example and another example are the two earliest samplers known from Miss Balch's School. An example of similar composition is found in Betty Ring, Girlhood Embroidery, Volume I, pg. 181, fig. 206, which features similarily striped blue and white columns with arch and polychrome floral border emanating from blue and white two-handled vases. Polly has also incorporated her initials at the bottom of the columns. The Balch School samplers are characterized by the floral vine border growing from vases and the depiction of Providence, RI, buildings.
C Property from the Estate of a Private Collector
Additional Notes & Condition Report
frame rubbed, scratched, losses
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