Boston, Massachusetts, 1827
A praiseworthy sampler with a strong folk quality, this is signed, “Mary Donnoghue Is My Name And With My Kneedle I Worked This Same / That Every One May Pleanly See The Care My Parents Took Of Me finished / November The 6 1827.” Large baskets of flowers, potted plants, large birds and an architectural whimsy are joined by two couples in excellent period attire and an outstanding depiction of a coach, coachman and horses, all very finely stitched.
The sampler descended in a family and while they couldn’t pinpoint Mary Donnoghue, they’re certain that she lived in Boston, according to family history. An article in New England Historical and Genealogical Register entitled The Irish in New England is highly informative about the early population in Boston and other towns. By 1830 the Irish-Catholic population was approximately 8000, having doubled in five years. Mary Donnoghue’s family was most likely part of the wave of immigrants in the 1820s.
The sampler was worked in silk on linen and is in excellent condition. It has been conservation mounted and is in a beveled and figured maple frame with a cherry bead.