Emma Lerch 1843
Origin and date: Probably Pennsylvania, 1843
Linen count/finished size: 25 count, 16-1/2″ square
Stitches: Cross stitch
Source: The Allentown Art Museum
A gift from the collection of Rosalind and Edwin Miller to the museum. Emma Lerch was born in Northampton County, Pennsylvania, in 1830, and she stitched this sampler in her thirteenth year. It is a very simple work, with a lovely meandering floral border. While perhaps too simple to have been worked as a school exercise at her age, the sampler bears some resemblance to the needlework taught by Esther Pritchard Hudders (1807-1887) of Bath/Catasauqua, particularly in the diamond-shaped leaves of the tree and in the bold color scheme. Emma might well have drawn inspiration from works produced at this teacher’s school, which was well established in 1843, the year the sampler was made.