A Textile Lover's Diary

Sarah Kurtz's Sampler 1804

Three block alphabets; one script alphabet. Two alphabets have letters colored alternately with no "J"; numbers to 4, to 15, and to 21; all these rows separated by geometric crossbands. Surrounding verse and inscription paired motifs of trees, crowns, flower-baskets, birds, and bird in wreath; two checkered flower-baskets with handles but no flowers. Border of geometric strawberry vine on all four sides. Silk embroidery thread on linen ground. STITCHES: cross, crosslet, stem, chain, eyelet, Algerian eye. THREAD COUNT: warp 28, weft 32/in. Inscription: "When wealth to virtuous hands is giv[e]n It blef[s]ses like the dews of heavn Like heaven it hears the orphans cries And wipes the tears from widows eyes Sarah Kurtz." (written in ink after the inscription is: "Worked 1804 age 9") Background: Sarah Kurtz and Thomas Orme were married by Rev. Balch in Washington, D.C., on June 2, 1816. They had three daughters—Rebecca, Elizabeth, and Anna. Sarah died on December 23, 1864, in Washington and is buried there in Oak Hill Cemetery. The date on the sampler indicates that Sarah was born in 1795. Anna's daughter Mary donated her grandmother's and aunt's samplers. See Elizabeth Orme's sampler. Measurements: Overall: 21 1/8 x 17 1/8 in.; 53.6575 x 43.4975 cm Maker(s): maker: Kurtz, Sarah maker: Kurtz, Sarah Date Made: 1804
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