Memorial Sampler for Rev. Samuel Hopkins

The entire text on this sampler is worked in black silk, using color only for the border and one crossband. The top center contains a 3 x 3 ½” space that is outlined with basting stitches in tan silk, but is completely empty. It probably was intended to contain a memorial monument or urn. Working the sampler in black indicated death and including a Bible passage on a sampler was common as most families owned that book. The sampler is stitched with silk embroidery thread on a linen ground with a thread count of warp 27, weft 28/in. The stitches used are cross and crosslet.
The sampler maker did not include her name, but was honoring a well respected minister. Samuel Hopkins was born on October 31, 1729, and married Sarah Porter on February 17, 1756. She was a widow with five children, and they had nine more children. After Sarah died, Samuel married Margaret Stoddard on October 16, 1776, and they had one child. He was ordained as the fourth minister of the church in Hadley, Massachusetts on February 26, 1755, and served until February of 1809, when he was struck with a paralysis which impaired his mental faculties. He died on March 8, 1811.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Physical Description
silk on linen (overall material)
yellow-green (overall color)
blue-brown (overall color)
peach (overall color)
yellowish tan ground (overall color)
black (overall color)
overall: 11 1/2 in x 13 1/2 in; 29.21 cm x 34.29 cm
United States: Massachusetts
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Textiles
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Arthur M Greenwood

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