Mary's Handework...

Mary's sampler has come to grace the walls of our keeping room. I will treasure it, admire it, take good care of it & am certain it will serve as inspiration for future work.

I will think of Mary often & wonder...

A school girl named Mary Wrigley of Clearfield, PA completed this piece in 1834, she was 14 years old at the time the piece was completed. Mary was one of 11 siblings born to Robert and Mary Kay Wrigley. Mary's Sampler came complete with a full family history of her parents that immigrated to America from Lancashire, England. The piece measures 18" square with large motifs, common to PA samplers, worked in bright reds and mossy green flosses.


I am a small square of linen and some
few yards of thread.
Long years ago, when America was young,
I lay across the lap of a little girl
whose hands patiently patterned me.
Seated on her stool, she faced a table
whereon a candle flickered,
and shadows chased
her busy fingers.
She sewed the alphabet and learned her letters...
formed a verse and learned devotion...
embroidered flowers and learned nature...
worked a border and learned art.
Through me, in part, she learned to be
a woman and a wife.
I was her hope and her despair,
her pride and her love.
She is gone now, and gone are her times
and her ways.
But in me, her sampler, and through her needle,
something of her and her day lives on
as surely as the painter
lives through his brush, the writer
through his pen. Author - unknown.

With thy Needle & Thread,


Ann in Scotland. said...

Hi Brenda
I would love to add your beautiful blog as a link to my blog but wouldn't do it without asking you first. If you want to check my blog then you will find it at http://www.beadlework.com
Your designs have a special appeal - very quirky and the finishing ideas are so unique.

Lee Morrison said...

Morning Brenda,

Mary's sampler is exquisite. How cool! "A Sampler Speaks" was wonderful. Samplers are my favorite needlework, so this was quite a treat! Thank you for sharing!

Lee at Falling Star Primitives

Faye said...

Mary is beautiful~~~~ I love the look and simpilicity of it...I CAN see a young girl working on this! And, the frame is the perfect compliment~~

Take care, Faye

Rosie said...

Hi Brenda,
That sampler really is beautiful. Devotion is definitely the word when it comes to old samplers.

Lynn B. said...

Mary Wrigley's sampler is a true treasure. Mary was my 3rd great aunt. May I ask how you happened to acquire this piece? How beautiful.

brenda gervais said...

Lynn B - I purchased this sampler from a Wisconsin antique dealer at an antique show near Rochester MN several years ago. I have also had contact with another relative by the name of Bob Wrigley. Do you know him?