Ornamental arts : the contribution of samplers to the study of women's history : an honors thesis (HONRS 499)
Women's education during the colonial and federal periods of American history gave rise to sampler-making, which, in the most recent decades, has become a credible art form. This examination of education's impact on the art of sampler-making is divided into nine chapters that can be grouped into three sections. The first section, comprised of the first two chapters, gives basic information on the use of ornamental arts in the education of women and on the various aspects of making a sampler. Section two, which includes the remaining chapters, takes an in-depth look at the schools, teachers, and sampler designs that came from new England during the late seventeenth through mid-nineteenth centuries. The final part of this thesis is the conclusion, which looks at how sampler-making was transformed into an art form and valuable collector's item when, before, samplers had been used primarily as an educational tool for women. Brought together, all these chapters serve to emphasize the significance of sample-making in the development of women's history.