856
856

PROPERTY OF VARIOUS OWNERS

Rare and Important 'Fishing Lady' Canvaswork Picture, Zebiah Gore, Boston, Massachusetts, January 10th 1791
Estimate
80,000120,000
LOT SOLD. 68,750 USD
JUMP TO LOT
856

PROPERTY OF VARIOUS OWNERS

Rare and Important 'Fishing Lady' Canvaswork Picture, Zebiah Gore, Boston, Massachusetts, January 10th 1791
Estimate
80,000120,000
LOT SOLD. 68,750 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Important Americana

|
New York

Rare and Important 'Fishing Lady' Canvaswork Picture, Zebiah Gore, Boston, Massachusetts, January 10th 1791
with the inscription Now We are taught to Live there's nothing I / Esteem Worth learning but the way to Die / Zebiah Gore Ended her Sampler In the 11th Year of her Age January the 10ththe lower reserve depicting a shepherd presenting a flower to a young lady within a pastoral setting, the reverse inscribed in pencil Zabiah [sic] Gore born July 27 1780.
17 1/2 by 15 in.
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Provenance

Zebiah Gore (1780-1848) and her husband Edward Johnson (1769-1853) of Boston;
To their daughter, Hannah Richards (Johnson) Leeds (1817-1907);
To her daughter Mary Hannah Leeds (1854-1939) of Reading, MA;
At her death, given to her friend Edith S. Nichols of Reading, MA;
To her daughter, Miriam Barclay of Reading, MA;
Thence by descent to the present owners.

Exhibited

New York, Museum of American Folk Art, The Polite Lady: A Course of Female Education, September 15, 1994 – January 8, 1995.

Literature

Ethel Stanwood Bolton and Eva Johnston Coe, American Samplers (The Massachusetts Society of the Colonial Dames, 1921): plate XXXVIII.

Catalogue Note

This sale represents a rare opportunity to purchase an exceptional example of schoolgirl art from the 18th century that has never been on the market until the present time.  Inscribed “Now We are taught to Live there’s nothing I / Esteem Worth learning but the way to Die / Zebiah Gore Ended her Sampler In the 11th Year of her Age January the 10th,” this sampler is the work of Zebiah Gore (1780-1848), who embroidered it when she was 11 years old. The pencil inscription on the reverse “Zabiah Gore born July 27, 1780” indicates that the sampler dates to 1791.  With its figural and pastoral artistic scene, this needlework showcases Zebiah’s talent and mastery with the needle. It descended in her family until 1939, when it was given to a family friend.

Zebiah Gore was born on July 27, 1780 in Boston, the daughter of Jeremiah Gore (December 26, 1734-July 9, 1813) and Hannah Richards (Feb. 13, 1750-Nov. 25, 1816), who married on February 18, 1773. Jeremiah was a landowner in Boston as well as a member of the Roxbury fire company. He was the grandson of John Gore (1634-1705), who was a master mariner, surveyor of land, and civil engineer in Roxbury, where he served as selectman and town clerk.  On January 24, 1802, Zebiah Gore married Edward Johnson (September 28, 1769-March 18, 1853) and they had two children: Zabiah (Johnson) Balch (January 24, 1807-May 2, 1892) and Hannah Richard (Johnson) Leeds (April 16, 1817-March 1, 1907). After the death of Zebiah on August 1, 1848 and her husband in 1853, this sampler became the property of their daughter Hannah. Her daughter, Mary Hannah Leeds (July 27, 1854-October 27, 1939), owned the sampler next, when it was illustrated in the publication, American Samplers by Ethel Bolton and Eva Coe in 1921. At her death, she gave this sampler, a clock by Aaron Willard and other possessions to her friend Edith S. Nichols in whose family the sampler descended until this sale.

A virtually identical sampler worked by Elizabeth Richards at age 10 and also finished on January 10th is in the collection of the Historic Odessa Foundation in Odessa, Delaware.  Zebiah Gore and Elizabeth Richards were cousins and likely attended the same needlework school together in the Boston area. Both samplers follow the same pattern depicting a shepherd presenting a flower to a lady in a pastoral setting surrounded by animals. With their black outlines, the pronounced eyes of the figures on both samplers are distinctive and possibly unique.

Important Americana

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New York