Delaware Sampler Symposium Six Weeks Away; Exhibition Available for View in March and April

‘Wrought with Careful Hand’: Ties of Kinship on Delaware Samplersferris2Image taken from a sampler by Deborah Ferris,
1783, in the collection of the Delaware Historical
Society (N1993.001.661)

On March 21-23, 2014, the Biggs Museum of American Art in Dover, Delaware will host a three-day weekend symposium highlighting Delaware samplers and newly emerging scholarship on Delaware’s needlework schools and teachers. This event is the culmination of a year long sampler documentation effort in Delaware, directed by the University of Delaware’s Sampler Archive Project. Financial support for the Delaware Sampler Symposium is provided in part by the Delaware Humanities Forum, the Coby Foundation, and the Sampler Consortium.

On Saturday March 22, 2014 there will be a full day of lectures and multimedia presentations:

Delaware’s Schoolgirl Embroideries in  Historical and Cultural Context

The Decorative Arts of Delaware: Historical and Geographical Influences (Ryan Grover, Biggs Museum of American Art)

Decorative Needlework: A Legacy Wrought with Needle and Thread (Linda Eaton, Winterthur Museum)

Genres of Genealogical Records: Commemorating Family on Delaware Samplers (Gloria Seaman Allen, Independent historian)

The Philadelphia Influence: Designs, Motifs, and Teachers (Amy Finkel, M. Finkel and Daughter)

One Family in Delaware: The Corbits of Historic Odessa (Deborah Buckson, Historic Odessa Foundation)

A Sampling of Delaware Schools and Teachers

The Brandywine School in Wilmington: Preceptress Susannah Pusey Harvey (Barbara Hutson, Independent researcher)

Quakers at Duck Creek Crossroads: ‘Southern Boarding School’ Samplers (Lynne Anderson, Sampler Archive Project, University of Delaware)

Mrs. Bowers School: Persistent Themes and Motifs in Lewes (Gloria Seaman Allen, Independent historian)

Researching Samplers:  Tools and Techniques

Researching Girls and Their Families: Tapping Genealogical Databases (Cynthia Steinhoff, Anne Arundel Community College)

Researching Teachers and Schools: Digging into Historic Newspapers                         Sheryl DeJong, Independent researcher

Researching Domestic Life: Orphans Court Appraisals & Probate Inventories                         J. Ritchie Garrison, University of Delaware, and Rebecca Sheppard.

On Friday, March 21 and Sunday March 23 there will be a variety of sampler needlework classes, sampler research classes, and group field trips to see samplers in Delaware collections. More information on these classes and field trips will be posted at the Sampler Archive website as arrangements are finalized. Advanced registration will be required.

More information is available at:

The related exhibit will be in place from March 7 through April 20, 2014. A collection of approximately 60 Delaware samplers will be on view for the duration of the exhibition to highlight the different styles that were produced during the 18th and 19th centuries.



The Loudoun Sampler Guild is a group of sampler enthusiasts based in northern Virginia. We meet monthly for lectures, needlework classes and workshops, and field trips.

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 267 other followers


%d bloggers like this: