Hannah Bates

American Samplers

Hannah Bates, age 9


Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


This is a large, beautifully worked sampler with compartmented borders. The style is quite similar to later compartmented samplers taught by Leah Galligher and Mrs. Rachel Steigelman, both in Lancaster County. An excellent assortment of elements is presented – stylized flowers and buds on stems, pots and baskets of blossoms, evergreen trees and birds.

Signed, “Hannah Bates Her Work in 1796 / 9th Year of her age,” it is further inscribed, “Hannah Bates is My Name / Now I am Young I did the same.” Other poetry that she included is more religious and cautionary in nature and was included in published Psalms of the period. Note that she used an old style "s" in her surname, but all the other letters "s" are backwards. While the lettering is carefully spaced and stitched, all of the misspelled words make it clear that pictorial motifs held more interest for young Hannah. Overall this is quite an impressive sampler, especially for a nine year-old.

Size (W x H): 16 1/4 x 27 inches

Stitches: Cross, satin, outline, back

Media: Silk on linen


We believe that Hannah is the daughter of Benoni and Sophia Bates of Philadelphia. The couple had at least five children: Johann (1785), Hannah (1789), Maria (1791), Carl (1793), Margaret (1796), Elisabeth (1799) and Benony (1803). Father Benoni lived until 1824.

Hannah married Daniel Fling, a watch and clock maker, on 30 December 1810, as recorded at the Philadelphia Monthly Meeting. Their children were Sophia (1811), James Burrel (1813), Mary Experience (1815) and Samuel Atkinson (1817). Hannah appears in the 1850 U.S. census living with James B., a shoemaker, and his family. Hannah does not appear anywhere in the 1860 census records so we presume she is deceased.


HannaH BaTes Her WoRk IN 1796
9th Year of her aGe

to the Let My first oferinGs rise
Whose sun CreAtes the daY
Swift As his GlAdning Influen
Ces lies And SPotles As his ray

HannaH Bates is MY name
Now I am Young I did the same
that I am brouGht to know the
danGer I was In By Nature
By PraCtICe a WretChed SLave

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Additional Information

Hannah's verse is taken from the hymn To Thee Let My First Offerings Rise:

To thee let my first offerings rise,
Whose sun creates the day;
Swift as his gladdening influence flies,
And spotless as his ray.

This day thy favoring hand be nigh,
So oft vouchsafed before;
Still my it lead, protect, supply,
And I that hand adore.

If bliss thy providence impart,
For which resigned I pray,
Give me to feel the grateful heart,
And without guilt be gay.

Affliction should thy love intend
As vice or folly's cure,
Patient to gain that gracious end,
May I the means endure.

Be this and every future day
Still wiser than the past;
And when I all my life survey,
May grace sustain at last.
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(This sampler was added to the site on November 21, 2014)