The Harlow, Bradford, and Churchill samplers belong to an important group worked at an unknown school in Plymouth between 1815 and 1845. Typical is an octagonal format and a scene that combines embroidery and paint upon the linen ground. The Harlow sampler and other early pieces include ligatures and a bold alphabet that suggest Quaker influence.
Mary Ann Bradford, a daughter of William Bradford and Elsey Sylvester, was a direct descendant of the Pilgrim governor William Bradford. She married William Holmes on October 8, 1844. Her family record includes a memorial to three-year-old William Bradford, Jr . and written on the plinth is the same epitaph found on Burial Hill in Plymouth: Bost not thyself of tomorrow / For thou
knowest not / What a day may bring forth .
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