Sunday, April 18, 2010

Documentation Day: Smith Co. Sampler

1834 Jemima Clardy Mclelin
Smith Co.
silk on 32 ct. linen
17 1⁄4"V x 16 1⁄4"H © TSS 141

Jemima Clary Mclelin (McClelin) worked a very unusual sampler. Her large sawtooth border at the top and bottom contrasts with the floral repeat patterns found along the sides. Jemima used drawn work for the centers of the flowers on the left, an uncommon technique in Tennessee samplers.

We were able to remove the sampler from its frame and photograph the reverse, revealing a purple alphabet and yellow verse.

Jemima's signature is preceded by text from a Baptist hymn. Her mother's name is added at the end of the second line, perhaps indicating that Susan taught Jemima.

O grant me then this one request
And I will be satisfied / Susan Mclelin
That love divine may rule my breast
And all my actions guide
Jemima Clardy Mclelin. Sept. 15. 1834.

Source for text: Stennet, Samuel (1727-1795). Verse 9, “Should Bounteous Nature Kindly Pour.” A Selection of Hymns from the Best Authors, Intended to be an Appendix to Dr. Watts' Psalms and Hymns, 4th American ed. 1819.

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