Collection of 5 CADWELL Samplers - East Hartford, CT - S. Wait. Instructress
This is a unique collection of 5 silk on linen marking samplers acquired by Glee in 1979. They are worked by the CADWELL sisters, Polly and Betsey, and 20 years later, by Susan Maria Cadwell, whom I believe to be a daughter. Cadwell was a common surname in Hartford, CT, and the surrounding counties, in the late 18th c. I have researched every Cadwell that is documented for the state, but had a challenging time finding more definitive information on all 3 girls. Polly & Julia Cadwell, are recorded in the Hartford First Church records as daughters of Abraham Cadwell, receiving baptism, 24 Jun 1792. Betsey, daughter of Abraham Cadwell, is baptised 4 years later in the same church, 23 Oct 1796. Abraham appears to be the black sheep of the Cadwell lineage. There are no other records of him, or of the mother of the girls. (There is a Betsey Cadwell, daughter of David Cadwell and Mindwell Judson, b. 1805, but no Polly or Susan connected to her.)
Inscription on Susan Cadwell's sampler: "S. Wait. Instress / Susan Cadwell aged 12 yrs Feby 6th 1824" - (School for Young Ladies, the Misses Wait. "Plaine and fine needlework, Tambouring, Embroidery, Drawing and Painting" - CT Gazette, 5 May 1813).
Verse: "Be good yourself nor think another's shame / Can raise your merit or adorn your fame." There is a Susan M. Cadwell, born abt 1812, in Harwinton, Litchfield, CT (27 miles from East Hartford). With no records of her parents, she is listed as marrying Hart Barker, abt 1842 in Hartford, CT.
The motifs in Betsey's and Susan's samplers are similar to several pieces featured in Susan Schoelwer's Connecticut Needlework: Women, Art, and Family, 1740–1840. Sally Doolittle worked her sampler in Wallingford, instructed by Ruth Eliza, in 1819, and Abigail Ursula Wooster created hers under the instruction of Mary Mallory, in Waterbury, in 1824. pp. 154-157
Further genealogy research provided with collection.
1803 - 1824
Susan Cadwell, 1824, 13.25" x 9.75"
Susan Maria Cadwell, n.d., 7" x 7"
S.M.C., n.d., 7.75" x 7.5"
Betsey Cadwell, n.d., 8..25" x 10.75"
Polly Cadwell, 1803, 5.75" x 6"
Sheila Rideout at Mathew Seamore Antiques, Woodbury, CT - 1979
Darkening, staining, and foxing to each one. Some holes to ground. Not mounted and unframed.