Halsey Munson Americana
2707 Twin Oaks Court
Decatur, Illinois 62526
All rights reserved.
Rare Boston Schoolgirl Needlework
Silk and chenille on silk Boston schoolgirl needlework with watercolor details, possibly the work of “The Boston Limner,” portrait painter John Johnston. This scene depicts Maria, a character from 18th C. novelist Laurence Stern’s 1768 Sentimental Journey. Stern’s work was a popular source for paintings and needlework among schoolgirls at exclusive academies in the early 19th C. Her flute and small spotted dog are both elements in a late 18th C. Angelica Kauffman painting of Maria drawn from the same literary source, illustrated in Mabel Swan’s Plain and Fancy: American Women and Their Needlework, 1700-1850. Bordered by a black gilt and eglomise mat, and in what appears to be the original water gilt frame. This needlework may have been done by a student at Susanna Rowson’s school. 11½” x 13½” SS. 16⅜” x 19” overall.