Polly Rider,

Polly Rider,

Worcester County, Massachusetts, circa 1795

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sampler size: 18" x 15½" • framed size: 21½" x 19" • sold

A handsome sampler worked by Polly Rider of Worcester County, Massachusetts, this features many alphabets in a center register, a beautiful lattice-work basket of flowers, and two low baskets with pyramids of fruit. The maker inscribed her birth along the bottom, “Polly Rider was born April the 7 1782” along with a classic sampler verse, “My youthful days will soon be o’er / This you may see when I am no more / Laid in the cold grave we all must be / And this I have wrought for you to see.” The side borders are airy compositions of flowers and leaves on delicate vines, and a four-sided sawtooth outer border frames it well.  The sampler would have been made when Polly was approximately 12 or 13 years old.

Polly was the daughter of Samuel and Margaret (Gibson) Rider who were married in Hopkinton, Massachusetts in 1773. The family lived in various towns in Worcester County, including Shrewsbury, Oxford and Grafton. The Rider family in America began five generations prior, with Thomas Rider (1606-1655) who was born in Norfolk, England and died in Boston, Massachusetts, having arrived in New England in 1634. Polly’s marriage to Joshua Winchester Leland (1786-1862) was recorded in the Grafton Vital Records on March 19, 1807. She died in 1867 at age 84 years, 9 months and is buried along with her husband in Riverside Cemetery in Grafton.

Worked in silk on linen, the sampler is in excellent condition with some very slight loss to the left border. It has been conservation mounted and is in a beveled mahogany frame with a maple bead. 

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