Hester Brunner, Pennsylvania German

Hester Brunner, Pennsylvania German

Worcester, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, 1835

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sampler size: 17¼” x 16¾” • framed size: 21¼” x 20¾” • sold

Pennsylvania German samplers can offer a wonderful combination of motifs, often presenting many of the decorative elements that were popular within their tight knit community and occasionally adding in a few of Quaker sampler designs, the use of which was widespread in southeastern Pennsylvania in that period. Hester Ann Brunner’s sampler is a fine example – a delightful tableau of flower arrangements, geometric motifs and pairs of birds composed around a central fruit tree. The sampler is dated “June the 3 AD 1835,” with the 3 digit worked backwards in each case.

Born on July 26, 1823, Hester was the daughter of Michael and Mary (Kline) Brunner. The family lived in Worcester, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, north and a bit west of Philadelphia and had been in Worcester for many generations. Conrad Brunner was the emigrant ancestor, born in Switzerland in 1711 and was living in Worcester by 1751. In 1849, Hester married Jacob Yeakel (1824-1892), a fellow Pennsylvania German, specifically a member of the Schwenkfelder sect. Mention of the family is published in Genealogical Record of the Descendants of the Schwenkfelders Who Arrived in Pennsylvania in 1733,1734, 1736, 1737 (Manayunk, 1879). The Yeakels had two children. When Hester Brunner Yeakel died on March 18, 1904, it was reported in the April 1904 issue of the Schwenkfeldian, a periodical publication.

The sampler was worked in silk on linen and is in excellent condition with some very minor wear to some of the white stitching. It has been conservation mounted and is in a beveled cherry frame with a figured maple bead.


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