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African-American woman sewing

(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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George Fuller (1822-1884) of Deerfield, Massachusetts, traveled through much of the South, including South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama in the 1850s. Working as a portrait painter, Fuller also made numerous sketched of slaves and plantation slave life he observed on his travels. Fuller's sketches provide a rare glimpse of slavery in the Deep South in the decade before the Civil War (1861-1865.) This drawing is one of three Fuller made of the interior of slave quarters on a southern plantation. The woman in the sketch is making or mending a shirt. Her task and comfortable seating suggest that she is a house slave rather than a field hand. Note the Fuller's careful attention to details such as the woman's dress, the iron pots in the fireplace, and the meager furniture.


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