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Ellen Eliza Champney, New Ipswich, Hillsboro, NH, 1823

 

This is an extremely pleasing sampler, with its crisp combination of a lawn and house scene, an unusual variety of trees and an imposing basket of flowers.  It also includes a letter perfect verse that reads as follows:

 

O thou to whom all creation bow

Within the earthly frame

Show all the world how great art thee

How glorious is thy name

 

Ellen's sampler exhibits a shimmering inner sawtooth border meticulously worked in the satin stitch enclosed within a larger, undulating strawberry border on three sides.  This three-sided border is quite often found on southern NH and northeastern Massachusetts's pieces.   It is the house and surrounding lawn, however that draws our attention.  The lawn is also the setting for a variety of trees and a large basket of flowers that ultimately provide the base from which the undulating borders arise.  The double chimney Federal house is shown in three-quarter view with teal blue windows and was worked with a solid whipstitch.  Note the stitched detail at the corner of the house to give it definition and depth.

 

Ellen signed her sampler "Ellen Eliza Champney aged 8 years.  Happily, our research regarding Miss Champney has been quite rewarding.  Ellen, born on Oct. 17, 1815 in New Ipswich NH, was the fourth of seven children born to Benjamin Champney and Rebecca Brooks.  Her brother, Benjamin Crackbone Champney, (1817-1907) was a well-known artist and teacher and one of the founders of what became known as the White Mountain School, a loose association of Boston and New York artists taken by the White Mountains. Their work has been "re-discovered" by art critics and has become quite popular once again.  He was president of the Boston Art club in 1858 and published Sixty-Year Memories of Art and Artists.

 

Ellen married John Clough on December 31, 1840 and had one child, Maria, who was born in Woburn, Massachusetts. Worked in silk on linen, the sampler is in excellent condition and is mounted into a carved walnut frame.  It is our pleasure to present it to you.

Sampler size: 11 1/2" x 14"

 

 

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