|A family register made by Elizabeth Jane Hunter of Knox County in 1836.|
Photo by Jennifer C. Core for the Tennessee Sampler Survey
Samplers, once made by schoolgirls learning how to embroider, can be valuable primary sources for genealogists. Family registers were usually copied directly from family Bibles, listing names, births and death dates. When compared to public records, the dates on samplers are often more accurate. For example, if a girl was born and died unmarried before the 1850 census, her sampler might be the only proof of her existence. Some samplers also included details such as the name of a girl’s school, her teachers and the town where she lived.
Janet S. Hasson, the former curator at Belle Meade Plantation, will conduct the workshop from 9:30 a.m. until 11 a.m. May 6 in the auditorium of the Library & Archives building. The Library & Archives is located at 403 Seventh Avenue North, directly west of the Tennessee State Capitol in downtown Nashville. Although the event is free and open to the public, registration is required due to seating limitations in the auditorium.
To reserve seats, please visit https://tennesseesampler.eventbrite.com. Free parking is available around the Library & Archives building.
"The history of our state is told in many different mediums," Secretary of State Tre Hargett said. "The tradition of making samplers dates back thousands of years, which of course includes the era in which Tennessee existed as a frontier territory before statehood. I believe this workshop will offer tips on a fun and informative way to study history that's quite different from digging through reference books and maps. I encourage people to make reservations as early as possible for this event."
The Tennessee State Library and Archives is a division of the Tennessee Department of State and Tre Hargett, Secretary of State