It might be that you know the city of Deventer more of its honey cake or carpets than of its samplers. Deventer is located along the east bank of the river the Yssel, in the province of Overyssel.
Being relatively far away from the traditional sampler producing provinces of Holland, Zeeland, Groningen en Friesland, Deventer had a rather impressive sampler making tradition which lasted from about 1760 to 1860. Probably there are earlier samplers than this, but so far we simply do not recognize them as such.
The Deventer Museum has a unique collection of 18 samplers all made by girls coming from one Deventer family. The oldest samplers were made by Hendrika Lamberts in 1766 and some years later by her twin sisters Geertruyda and Jacoba. The later ones were made in the 1790's -1800's by their nieces. Several of these samplers are in the online collection (go to zoeken, fill in merklap or stoplap).
The first sampler of the group was made by Hendrika Lamberts (1755-1800) in 1766.
The next one was made by her niece Hester Jacoba Lamberts (1790-1831) in 1805. Not bad either!
(Collection Historisch Museum Deventer)
Momentarily on our website we have a pair of samplers made by GTR in 1791. At first glance, the samplers didn't fit into the Amsterdam, Holland or Zeeland as provenance. Doing some (no, a lot) research brought us a bit closer to Deventer, but it was still no solid proof. Until...the darning samplers popped up and everything fell into place. It turned out that the darning samplers were more or less unchanged in a almost a century. This gave us the key to form a complete group of Deventer samplers, including GTR's.
The first darning sampler was again worked by Hendrika, but the one underneath was made by her sister Geertruyda (1753-1813) in 1769.
Than a generation later a darning sampler followed by Geertruyda's nice Ida (1795- ?) in 1809. She was the sister of Hester (sampler above).
Than just a little back in time, the darning sampler (and sampler) of GTR fits very nicely in between the Lamberts family needlework.
The similarities, particularly in the darning samplers are evident; a dark corner darn, a needlelace darn, eight darns placed a bit inwards, a striking middle cartouche with crown and guirlandes. And, as so often there is no sign on any of the samplers who was responsible for all this. The teachers of the French school(s) in Deventer were to modest to have the girls put their initials on the samplers. Too bad really, finding records of the famous French schools in the Netherlands is quite a difficult task if not impossible. Nevertheless, a start is made now and we are able to define a complete new group of former more or less homeless samplers!
Underneath a few more examples. Please have a look.
This sampler made by FE 1824 has a darning sampler companion...
There are several more but to round up this subject one more darning sampler, the youngest we found so far. Worked in 1859 and still so perfectly made. It must have been at least the third or fourth generation of teachers keeping up the good work.