History: Elizabeth Parker Sampler

Although this embroidery is described as a sampler, Elizabeth Parker did more than demonstrate her stitching abilities, she recorded her early life in embroidery. She describes the life she was born into and her childhood: at 13 she left home to become a nursery maid and had a number of unpleasant experiences at the hands of her employers leaving her desperate and considering suicide. She poignantly ends her sampler with ‘what will become of my soul’ . Here the sampler ends and it could be assumed that something happened to her resulting in the sentence, and sampler, being unfinished.

Although the sampler ends rather abruptly historians have been able to find out more about her and discovered that she went on to become a school teacher and lived to be 76 years old. You can read more about this sampler here and here.

Thank you to Zoe for letting us know about this fascinating sampler.


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