American Sampler by Sally S. Smith, 1836

Dominated by a large house, shown in three-quarter view and centered between two stylized, leafy trees, this handsome sampler is signed, “Executed by Sally S. Smith AD 1836.” There are various ways that samplermakers signed their work and we find this phrasing to be one of the most appropriate – needlework was indeed executed by schoolgirls after they learned the techniques and patterns from their teachers.

Sally stitched two hymns that were widely published in the early 19th century: “In the soft season of thy youth / In natures smiling bloom / Ere age arrives and trembling wait / Its summons to the tomb” and “Remember thy Creator God / For Him thy powers employ / Make Him thy hope thy love thy trust / Thy confidence and joy.”

The house is nicely detailed with delicate mullions to the windows and a double row of eyelet stitches at the foundation. Worked in silk on linen, it is in excellent condition and has been conservation mounted into a later 19th century walnut frame with a gilt liner. UV filter glass was intalled. 

Dealer M. Finkel & Daughter
Date: 1836
Origin United States
Artist/Maker Sally S. Smith
Measurements sampler size: 16½” x 15¾” • framed size: 21½” x 20¾”
Inventory View Dealer's Inventory
Price 3400
Contact Amy Finkel, 215-292-3568 or

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