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Date Made:ca. 1790
Materials:textile: bleached (white) plain weave linen
Place Made:United States; Massachusetts
Measurements:overall: CF- 39 in x Width at hem -27 1/4 in x Sleeve - 20 in
Accession Number:  HD 2001.9.3
Credit Line:Hall and Kate Peterson Fund for Minor Antiques
Museum Collection:  Historic Deerfield

Hand-sewn, hand-spun linen man's linen shirt with a high attached collar, center front neck slit, and cut with long tails, with the extra fabric used as a type of underwear to cover and protect body parts. Men's linen shirts are examples of some of the finest stitches found on domestic items of clothing. Usually stitched by wives or daughters, they were technical marvels of needlework seen in examples such as this shirt with rows of back-stitch on the cuffs that are 32 stitiches to the inch. The fine sewing also enabled the garments to survive both hard use and cleaning techniques such as boiling and the use of lye soap. The frills along the center front neck are always made from much finer linen, and were often starched and pressed into elaborate pleats.

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