Princeton Today: Hail Specimen of Female Art

Hammell, ElizabethHail specimen of female art
The needle’s magic power to show
To canvas various hues impart
And make a mimic world to grow
A sampler then with care peruse
An emblem sage you may find there
The canvas takes what forms you choose
So education forms the mind.

Morven Museum & Garden’s new exhibition, Hail Specimen of Female Art! New Jersey Schoolgirl Needlework, 1726 – 1860, is now open to the public. The exhibit is the first comprehensive survey of New Jersey schoolgirl needlework from the 18th and 19th centuries. Featuring 151 pieces, the exhibition includes examples on loan from Winterthur, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, and dozens of private collectors and institutions across the country. The exhibition runs through March 29, 2015.

Organized geographically, the exhibition features works from every region of the state. Although many elaborate and important examples of New Jersey needlework are featured in the exhibition, the curators have also included more modest examples that highlight other aspects of the educational environment, social class and familial situation experienced by young girls in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. In some cases the exhibit reunites, for the first time, needlework created by the same girl, sisters, cousins, schoolmates and other close relations.

The exhibition, which coincides with the 350th anniversary of New Jersey, occupies 1,709 square feet in five galleries within the second floor of the Morven mansion.

The title of the exhibition is borrowed from a needlework quoted above that was stitched by Trenton-born Anne Rickey (1783-1846). “Hail Specimen of Female Art” was stitched onto her sampler in 1798. Anne Rickey was the daughter of Quaker merchant, John Rickey (1751-1829) and his wife Amey Olden (1757-1849).

Morven Museum & Garden is located at 55 Stockton St., Princeton. For more information visit


October Native Plant Sale at the D&R Greenway Land Trust – Stop by the Johnson Education Center for some plants. Available in quart and gallon-sized pots from $5 to $12. 3 to 6 p.m., 1 Preservation Place, Princeton.

Corn Maze at the Howell Living History Farm -Visit New Jersey’s longest running corn maze. Three-acre field of 10 foot stalks and double-depth hedgerows where getting lost is guaranteed.  5 to 8 p.m. Located just down the road from the historic farm site at 17 Valley Rd., Lambertville. Admission $10 ages 10 & up, $8 ages 5-9, under 4 free.

“Mr. Holland’s Opus” at the Princeton Shopping Center –  Part of the “Back to School” movie series.  Film begins at 7:30 p.m., rain or shine. In the event of bad weather, movies will be in the Arts Council of Princeton;s Pop-Up Studio.

Harvest Moon Hike –  Visit the Plainsboro Preserve for a hike during the full moon. 80 Scotts Corner Road, Cranbury. $5 per person for members; $7 per person for non-members.

 Free Yom Kippur Services – Chabad of Princeton, Kol Nidre service, 6:15 p.m. Princeton Marriott, 100 College Road East, Plainsboro. Temple Micah, Kol Nidre service, Lawrenceville Presbyterian Church, Route 206, 8 p.m. Child care available.


Mostly sunny with a high of 71.


In Montgomery, overnight paving will take place on Rt. 601 between Inverness North and South. Inverness will be the detour. Paving on Rt. 518 between Rt. 206 and Rocky Hill. Expect alternating traffic.

One lane closure for the reconstruction and realignment of Route 518 between Canal Road and Route 27, alternating traffic weekdays 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., expected to begin any day now. Nov. 10 to Nov. 21: 24/7 road closure with detour. Nov. 24 to Dec. 23rd road closure with detour weekdays 9a.m. to 4 p.m..  This will be a long-term project with an expected completion at the end of 2015.

In South Brunswick, avoid Davidson Mill Road between Fresh Ponds Road and Rt 535 (Cranbury South River Rd.) due to paving until  4 p.m. One lane open. Expect delays.

In Lawrence, milling and resurfacing work slated for Pennington- Lawrenceville Road (County Route 546) from Federal City Road to U.S. Route 206.  New Jersey American Water is reconstructing Route 206 between the Fackler Road Extension and Province Line Road as part of a water main project the company completed last year. The work is being done mostly from 9 .m. to 6 a.m.

Next week – Milling and paving on Paul Robeson Place in Princeton will take place Oct. 9-11 from 8 a.m. to about 4 p.m.Traffic will be reduced to one lane of travel during the milling, and closed all together during the paving processes. Parking will be prohibited on Paul Robeson Place throughout the operation. Expect delays. Plan an alternate route.  Bank Street in Princeton will be closed at Nassau Street from Oct. 6 through Oct. 11, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily, due to construction. Residents and employees may enter Bank St. via Chambers St. during the closure.