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Sarah Ann Leader, Bedford, Pennsylvania, 1831

It is extremely rare to find a sampler that descendants have preserved, and has barely seen the light of day, retaining original color as the day it was made. This Sampler is one of those exceptional examples!  It descended in the Leader family of BEDFORD, Pennsylvania and was safely tucked away in a drawer for almost 200 years!

Worked by Sarah Ann Leader, the pristine sampler features vivid original colors of seldom seen . . . fluorescent lime, teal, and mauve, and features identifiable Quaker elements including lily of the valley, inverted tulip, inverted grapes identical to those found on Waynesville Quaker School examples (figs 56,129,130-Ohio Sampler Book); as well as a striking floral border all around. The verse reads:

On the tree of life eternal
Man let all thy hopes be staid
Which alone for ever vernal
Bears a leaf that shall not fade

In addition, Sarah created a little schoolgirl whimsy when she dropped the "Y" in her large alphabet right through the delicately stitched horizontal band below it. Above her verse she also worked a short band motif of interconnected diamonds in brilliant fluorescent green! The entire inscription includes not only the samplermaker's information but the TOWN AND DATE OF COMPLETION...."SARAH ANN LEADER'S WORK IN THE 12th YEAR OF HER AGE, BEDFORD, 1831 and JULY the 5".....the name and verse in bright teal and the town and date in the same vivid lime green. The pristine sampler (appx 18x17 inches sight, and 22 x 21 inches framed) is a stunning example.

Worked in silk on linen, it is in excellent condition and has been conservation mounted into a custom figured maple frame with bead and protected with Tru Vue conservation glass.


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