Wednesday 18 July 2012

Loudon Museum Threatened With Closure

I just had this worrying news from the Sampler Consortium today:
This is an urgent appeal from the Loudon Museum in Leesburg, Virginia. On July 9 the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors' Finance Committee voted to recommend elimination of funding for the Loudoun Museum. If the recommendation is adopted, the museum will close and its collections dispersed. One-third of the Loudoun Museum Collection consists of textiles made in Loudoun County and northern Virginia between the 18th and 20th centuries. The collection includes schoolgirl samplers, quilts, coverlets, costumes, historic clothing, needlework tools and accessories. The Loudoun Museum sampler collection owes its existence to Betty Whiting Flemming, who worked tirelessly to acquire, document, and promote girlhood embroideries. In 1995, forty samplers were displayed in an exhibit curated by Betty. In the exhibit's accompanying catalog, "Threads of History," Flemming wrote, "Most of the embroideries were made by girls in Loudoun County between the years 1792 and 1860." Pam Stewart, former curator of the Loudoun Museum, provides this additional information: "The LM sampler collection, in addition to those made in Loudoun, includes a number of Quaker girl samplers, as well as a 1799 English silk map sampler, a Virginia centennial sampler featuring Jack Jouett, the Susan Constant, and other key VA historical sites, a Janney sampler, several sewing samplers and a knitting sampler from Germany. Another highlight is the Esther Shivers sampler, beautifully worked on dark linen - a real eye-catcher." Help keep the Loudoun Museum open and the sampler collection intact. What can you do? Email the County Board of Supervisors and argue for continued funding of the museum. Their email is:

1 comment:

  1. I have such lovely memories of Betty Whiting Flemming, whom I met at the first Ackworth conference. She was indeed a "grand dame" of the sampler world, and is clearly much missed by the Loudon county community. It would be so very wrong for all her work to pass into nothingness!