An American schoolgirl sampler by one Ana Tyson, West-Town Boarding School, July 1812, measuring 11 3/4" by 13 1/2" (14 1/4" by 16 1/4" simply framed). This is a fine work of folk art, the creator having been a student at a then-renowned Society of Friends (Quaker) school in Chester County, Pennsylvania, outside of Philadelphia. The text reads: "Extract. /Enough has Heaven indulged of joy below./ To tempt our tarriance in this loved retreat. /Enough has Heaven ordained of useful woe. /To make us languish for a happier seat.//// Let no fond love of earth exact a sigh/ No doubt divert our steady steps aside, /Nor let us long to live, or dread to die,/ Heaven is our hope, and Providence our guide. /// Ana Tyson/West-Town Boarding School, 7th month// 1812." The sampler features a Pennsylvania hex sort of symbol at top, and simple leaf devices on the encircling line. Over more than 200 years the dark color of the lettering and devices has bled into the linen background, but this remains a powerful and very collectable piece of Americana folk art. Also there is a small figure-eight shaped hole in the linen at bottom center, again, forgivable considering the age. All photos taken through non-glare glass which should be discarded as it dulls the detail. The sampler was purchased outside of Seattle, and was said to have arrived in the Pacific Northwest with an Iowa collector. This is a much-traveled old work that might want to go east again to its point of origin. See the internet for much detail about this well-known school of its day.
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