Harmony D. Curtis,

Harmony D. Curtis,

Worthington, Hampshire County, Massachusetts, 1831

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sampler size: 17" square • framed size: 21¾" square • sold

A handsome sampler, this was made by nine-year-old Harmony Dillany Curtis who resided in Worthington, Massachusetts. Located 103 miles west of Boston in Hampshire County, the town was described in the 1839 New England Gazetteer as “pleasantly situated on elevated ground … washed by a branch of the Westfield River” and with a population of 1,142. Elijah Curtis, a farmer, and his wife Polly (Benjamin) Curtis were married there in 1816. The Benjamin family resided in Preston, Connecticut and then removed north to Worthington, Massachusetts. Polly’s father, James Benjamin (1757 – 1821), served as a private in the Revolutionary War.

The Curtis family included Harmony, born on March 26, 1822, and her siblings, Alden, Fidelia, Betsy and Mary. In 1856, Harmony married, as his third wife, Milton Nash, a farmer from the nearby town of Hinsdale and she died there in 1861.

The palette employed by Harmony is an interesting and unusual one: dark brown with accents of teal and peach, and the little log house and border use these colors well. The four-line verse, extolling the virtues of “busy hands,” furthers the appeal of this sampler. Line end elements include geometric motifs and a single and double heart. Worked in silk on linen, it is in excellent condition and has been conservation mounted into a beveled maple frame.

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