835
835
AN EXCEPTIONAL AND RARE SILK EMBROIDERED 'SCAMMAN FAMILY' COAT OF ARMS, SARAH CUTTS, SACO, MAINE, 1792
Estimate
30,00050,000
LOT SOLD. 100,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT
835
AN EXCEPTIONAL AND RARE SILK EMBROIDERED 'SCAMMAN FAMILY' COAT OF ARMS, SARAH CUTTS, SACO, MAINE, 1792
Estimate
30,00050,000
LOT SOLD. 100,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

The Collection of Anne H. & Frederick Vogel III

|
New York

AN EXCEPTIONAL AND RARE SILK EMBROIDERED 'SCAMMAN FAMILY' COAT OF ARMS, SARAH CUTTS, SACO, MAINE, 1792
inscribed THE NAME SCAMMAN; worked in satin and couching stitch on black silk ground with gold and silver thread, retains the original frame and glass.
Height 21 in. by Width 21 in.; 53.3 by 53.3 cm.
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Provenance

Dean Family;
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York;
Bernard & S. Dean Levy, Inc., New York, July 1974;
Vogel Collection no. 198.

Literature

T. H. Halsey and Charles O. Cornelius, A Handbook of the American Wing, 6th Edition (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1938), p. 169, fig. 84. as displayed in the room form Almodington, Somerset County, Maryland;
Joseph Downes, “Early American Interiors with Contemporary Window Hangings,” Magazine Antiques, vol. 50, no. 4, October 1946, p. 242;
Betty Ring, Girlhood Embroidery: American Samplers & Pictorial Needlework 1650-1850, Vol. 1, (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1993), p. 72 , fig. 71 (referenced).

Catalogue Note

This exceptional coat of arms is in outstanding condition and stands as an excellent representative of the required needleworking skills for such an ambitious work.  Armorials worked in silk thread on a black silk ground were taught to young girls in Boston around 1750. Earlier canvas work examples are known, but those with black silk grounds date to 1750 and later. This one represents the work of Sarah Cutts (1774-1845), who made it while a student at the school of Eleanor Druitt. An announcement for the opening of this school near the Quaker Meetinghouse in Boston was published in The Massachusetts Gazette and The Boston Weekly on October 17, 1771. In 1789, Eleanor Druitt moved her school to Court Street and continued to operate there through 1798.

Sarah’s sister, Elizabeth (1776-1810), worked a similar armorial while at Druitt’s school and it survives today in the collection of the York Institute in Saco, Maine (acc. no. 0000.23)(see Carolyn S. Parsons, Agreeable Situations: Society, Commerce, and Art in Southern Maine, 1780-1830, ed. Laura Fecych Sprague, (Kennebunk, ME: Brick Store Museum; Boston: Distributed by Northeastern University Press, 1987), pp. 2401, no. 142). Both possess identical frames except the cast gilt spandrels present on Elizabeth's coat of arms which are lacking on this example.

For her coat of arms, Elizabeth unknowingly worked the Milward arms rather than the arms of her father, Thomas Cutts (1736-1821), a prominent citizen of Saco. Sarah chose the Scamman arms, which were those of her mother, Elizabeth Scamman (1754-1803).  Both arms have the details favored by the Druitt school of a highly raised design in brilliant gold and silver with a helmet and motto ribbons featuring silver thread and black cross-stitched letters. As the compositions are very similar and a letter by Elizabeth to her father attests to her armorial being designed by “Mr. Gore”, it is likely that Sarah’s coat of arms was also designed by Samuel Gore (1750/51-1831), a heraldic artist working on Queen Street in Boston.

A very similar coat of arms for the Ridgeway family is also in the Vogel Collection and offered as lot ___ in this sale. It was also likely designed by Samuel Gore and worked in the school of Eleanor Druitt.

The Collection of Anne H. & Frederick Vogel III

|
New York