Men's Needlework Wallet, ca. 1775

Value (2014) | $3,000 Auction$5,000 Auction
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GUEST:
After my mom passed eight years ago, I was helping my dad go through things in the house. I came across that and I asked my dad about it. He said that was something that was my mom's. It's from her side of the family. He really didn't know anything about it. And I was quite taken with what I was guessing to be needlepoint. And then I opened it up and I found a collection of letters that date back to 1770s, and these letters are all to the Massachusetts, Duxbury and Boston area, and that's where my mom's family is from.

APPRAISER:
All right, well, I think that explains a lot. I'm looking at it as an example of early American needlework. This would have been a man's wallet.

GUEST:
Oh.

APPRAISER:
This would have been probably produced by a girl in school. Needlework was an essential part of a girl's education. All the colors in this are derived from nature, they're all natural colors. And it's made of wool. And it must have been quite a process putting this together. This is in remarkably good condition. These are always like in really tough shape. This is gourmet food for moths, all right? But we look at this, and it's so well preserved. Look at these colors. They're absolutely dazzling. And we're looking at a piece that was made in the last third of the 18th century, probably in the Boston area or in the South Shore towards Duxbury, Massachusetts. We turn it over and even on the back this is glorious, absolutely glorious. And the fact that all these family papers are inside, it's just loaded with them. I mean I got goose bumps when I saw all of this stuff. So these papers, with a little bit of research, might tell us who made it. This essentially with just a little bit of loss here and there is as bright as the day it was made. And that makes an auctioneer get all excited, I'll tell you.

GUEST:
Excellent.

APPRAISER:
So this has very good value. Got any ideas at all?

GUEST:
None.

APPRAISER:
All right. Well, I think probably it's worth in the area between $3,000 and $5,000.

GUEST:
Wow.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Skinner, Inc.
Boston, MA
Appraised value (2014)
$3,000 Auction$5,000 Auction
Event
Detroit, MI (June 01, 2013)
Category
Folk Art
Material
Wool

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