The inscription on the Fayetteville Academy Needlework/mourning picture reads as follows:
In // Memory // of // Enoch Harry, who departed from this life // 29 Oct. 1793. Aged <28> years & ………months
(David) Harry departed // this life 17 Oct. 1794 aged// 3 years & 8 months.
Jacob Mandeville departed // this life Oct. 9 1803 Aged// ten months
Farewell bright Souls. A short Farewell. Till we shall // meet again. In that happy place where pleasures dwell // And trees of life bear fruits of love. There Glory sits on // every face, there
Wrought By Ann Harry
Fayetteville Academy Dec. 10 1811
ARTIST: Ann Harry Sparks (1793-1870) lived most of her life in Marlboro County, South Carolina, about 65 miles from the Fayetteville Academy where she was educated and worked this piece of needlework. She was born on June 22, 1793, the same year her father Enoch Harry (1765-1793) died. Her mother, Susannah Forness, then married a wealthy planter, David Mandeville (d. 1827). On this needlework picture she mourns the death of her father, as well as her brother David Harry (1791-1794), and her half-brother Jacob Mandeville (d. 1803). In 1822, Ann married a well-to-do Marlboro County planter, Samuel Sparks (1787-1878). She and her husband are buried at the Welsh Neck Baptist Church Cemetery in Society Hill, Darlington County, South Carolina.
The Fayetteville Academy was founded in 1794 by the Reverend David Kerr. A graduate of Trinity College, Dublin, Kerr became the first Presiding Professor of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In 1810 the Raleigh Star observed that the Fayetteville Academy “had upwards of 120 Students… Music, Painting, and the French Language are said to be taught in a very superior manner by Miss Beze, a native of France.” The price of tuition for the 1811 term was between $2.50 and $6 per quarter. room and board cost $18 to $21 per quarter. The Academy taught both young men and women. Beginning in 1802 the young men were housed in a new “boarding house… large and commodious… very convenient to the Academy.”Young women were housed in the homes of “the most respectable families.” Usually the cost of materials for an embroidered picture such as this one would have been extra.
Ann worked this picture in the final days of the Academy’s 1811 term. She left portions of her memorial text unfilled.