Jane Ann Ferguson, Glasgow, Scotland, 1832
sampler size: 12¾” x 17” • framed size: 16¾” x 21”
Samplers made by Scottish schoolgirls can present excellent composition, praiseworthy needlework and whimsical detail; we offer Jane Ann Ferguson’s 1832 delightful example. The four-chimneyed manor house, with its fenced lawn has a large dog in the wide front door, is surrounded by many motifs: trees, baskets of flowers, various birds, large stars elements, little animals and a wide horizontal band that was used by samplermakers for a century at that point. The large tree at the lower left has a stitched title – “The Tree of Life” - in white thread. Jane also stitched initials of her parents – FF and JF – above and to the right of the house near the horizontal band. Additionally, the initials JA appear at the border, lower right; these may be the those of the teacher.
Jane Ann Ferguson is most likely the daughter of John and Flora (Murray) Ferguson who lived in Glasgow. The family lived initially in Old Cumnock, south of Glasgow before removing to Glasgow itself. The 1841 census includes the family living further south again, in Ayrshire on Alloway Street, where John was an innkeeper. We are grateful to the Scottish sampler scholars behind antiquesamplers.org for their help identifying Jane Ann Ferguson and her family.
The sampler was worked in silk on wool and is in excellent condition It has been conservation mounted and is in its fine, original beveled and veneer frame.