Mary Hannah Horspool, Billesdon School,

Mary Hannah Horspool, Billesdon School,

Leicestershire, England, 1837

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sampler size: 4½” x 6¼” • framed size: 7¾” x 9½” • sold

This little marking sampler with letter-perfect stitching was worked by Mary Hannah Horspool in Billesdon School in 1837, as she so notes. Billesdon is a village in Leicestershire, just east of the city of Leicester in England, and about halfway between London and Manchester as the crow flies. The school, which still stands there was built in 1650, funded by one man, William Sharpe, as a free school and continued to be maintained and supported by donations of the community.

Mary was born in 1827, making her 10 when she stitched this fine sampler. She was the oldest of child of William and Hannah Horspool; William was a farmer. A 1841 census implies that Mary had five siblings; however 1851 records indicate that the household included Mary and just three siblings.

Worked in a fine, deep teal silk on wool, this sampler remains in excellent condition. It has been conservation mounted into a dark painted, beveled period frame.

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