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Maker(s):Honeywell, Martha Ann
Culture:American (1787-1856)
Date Made:1810-1840
Materials:paper; ink; wood; glass; pencil
Place Made:United States; Eastern Atlantic Coast
Measurements:Frame: 5 1/2 x 4 3/8 x 15/16 in; 14 x 11.1 x 2.4 cm; Sheet: 4 3/8 x 3 1/8 in; 11.1 x 7.9 cm
Accession Number:  HD 2014.20.7
Credit Line:Gift of the Estate of Compton Allyn
Museum Collection:  Historic Deerfield

Framed silhouette of a man; Honeywell was known as an “extraordinary phenomenon” – throughout the United States and Europe as much for her accomplishments in embroidery, miniature writing, and paper cutting as for her body, which lacked hands and had only three toes on one foot. Born in Westchester, New York, in 1787, her career options were severely limited, but Honeywell was able to turn her debilitating qualities into tools for economic and social success as an accomplished visual and performance artist. At the young age of 11, Honeywell began to exhibit herself and performed sewing and ate food at the Museum of Gardiner Baker in New York City. By 1806, she began a life of itinerancy, making use of the rapidly expanding transportation network of turnpikes, canals, and after 1828, railroads. Honeywell toured from New England to South Carolina and Kentucky as well as Ireland, England, France, and Canada over her 50-year career. Throughout her career she produced a variety of visual arts including embroidery, tambouring, waxwork, ink drawing, miniature writing, and cloth and paper cutting. She usually sold her works for between 25 and 50 cents, in addition to her standard admission fee of 25 cents. Framed profile silhouette of a man with curly hair and a high collar jacket, image is cut from black paper and applied to a white background paper, inscribed in ink at the bottom of the silhouette is "Cut by M. Honeywell with the mouth." Faint traces of a pencil outline are visible on the edge of the sitter's silhouette; Sitter is unknown, on back of frame is a white label with the inked number, "66022" and pasted onto the frame is the number "465" using a red label maker; Condition: some staining along edge of paper, some dark smudges on the word "Cut", paper slightly wavy from moisture?, large loss to the frame.

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