Historical Activities

The NSCDA-VA undertakes a variety of projects to further the historic preservation and patriotic service aims of the organization.

At the state and local level the Virginia Society and our 10 Town & County Committees are active in preserving many projects such as the “Save the Outdoor Sculpture” program in Lynchburg; and assisting the History Museum in Roanoke to be able to purchase items from the Colonial period for its collection.

Additionally we have placed numerous historical plaques and markers across the state to honor significant events.

At the National level the NSCDA and its 45 State Societies are second only to the Federal Government in the number of historical markers and monuments that have been placed to recognize significant historical areas or events.

Our current preservation project is the “Sampler Survey”. American samplers and pictorial embroideries created by girls and young women are today a valuable insight to the social history of women’s culture and education in the 17th-19th centuries.

In 1921 The National Society of The Colonial Dames in The Commonwealth of Massachusetts published American Samplers, by Ethel Stanwood Bolton and Eve Johnston Coe. This book contains some 2,500 descriptions of samplers, and is still considered today the most comprehensive listing of samplers ever compiled. Since that time much has been discovered about the teachers and students that created these beautiful needleworks, many more have surfaced and the awareness of their existence much greater. So here we are some 85 years later conducting another survey that will include samplers in museums, historical societies, individual collections, as well as those owned by the NSCDA Museum Houses, our members and friends.

Our goal is to collect an inventory up to the present culminating with a publication and an exhibit, which will promote the study of samplers and pictorial embroideries.

For more information on this valuable project please visit the Sampler Survey