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Region: Middle Tennessee
1846 Mary Elizabeth Terrell
Mary D. Patterson, Teacher
Little Dog Group

16"V x 17"H © TSS 196
fibers: silk and wool
ground: 24 ct. cotton
Mary Elizabeth Terrell was the first child of Timothy Terrell and Nancy W. Dodson. Her father was a farmer in the Burwood area of Williamson County. Mary attended a school directed by Mary D. Patterson in nearby Spring Hill, Maury County. She was ten when she made her sampler there. In 1848, when Mary was 12, her mother died. Later in 1859 when her father died, her grandfather, Bird Dodson, became the Terrell children’s financial guardian. Mary wed William Akin in 1860, and the census that year shows the couple took in her siblings. The couple’s farm was next door to her grandfather’s in the 4th Civil District near Jordan’s Store. The Akins had five children, two of whom died in childhood. William Akin died in 1907 and Mary died ten years later. Both are buried in the Mt. Hope Cemetery in Williamson County.
Mary’s striking sampler retains its vivid colors. Her sampler provided an important clue; the name “Mary de Patterson” is stitched above the cartouche. Mary was the only one of Mrs. Patterson’s students to name her teacher.
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