Our trip to Connecticut last fall took us to many fascinating places. One of the most fun was Old Sturbridge Village (which is actually in Massachusetts). In the background of this page you can see some of the wonderful history interpreters we met and talked with. We saw a printer and a tinsmith at work, talked with a lovely lady who was making a rag rug, met a couple of ladies putting in a garden of bulbs for springtime delight, browsed the wares at the local mercantile and visited with two neighbors who were passing the time of day in a kitchen. This is a place that truly "takes you back", and makes you wonder whether you've fallen down the rabbit hole!
We had gone to Sturbridge because we knew there was a sampler exhibit - and this was our main excuse, but we spent the whole day just reveling in days gone by. It was magical!
Needlework of many types abounds here - on our way to the sampler exhibit, we saw some wonderful quilts. And later, as we toured through several homes, we saw more...
The homes we visited were of several different economic classes, so we got a good idea of everyday life for people across classes in New England of 1790 or so.
Early in our visit, we found the Needlework Exhibit we had come to see:
There were some beautiful samplers, and the exhibit was very well laid out...
with lots to see...
When we finally left the needlework, we toured the houses. One of the most memorable was a modest home with the lady of the house busy working on a rug.
She talked to us of her materials and the tools she had with her in her needlework bag.
There was evidence of her handiwork all over the home. These wonderful knitted mittens
and this make-do in the bedroom upstairs.
What a terrific day we had in Massachusetts! As we drove home, we knew we'd be heading back whenever we could! The exhibit we saw on samplers and girlhood embroidery is up until June 19th, and they have a terrific quilt exhibit they've just added. And the needlework found in all the houses is a real treat, so don't wait for a special exhibit - go anytime! If you can't visit - enjoy their online version, or a slide show of the quilts.