Heart-shaped poplarware box, Mount Lebanon, NY
Neale, Emma Jane (1843-1943)
Woven poplar box, reminiscent of heart, with lid. Lid, bottom, and top edges are lined with a white adhesive paper that has raised circles. Lid has a royal blue border 1/8" w. Proper right side of lid has circular woven basket about 1 7/8" in diameter. Proper left side of lid has eight-segmented dark blue velvet pincushion. Below these two items, mid-way between, is a woven poplar "purse-shaped" needle case with red and cream felt for needle storage. Lined with textured, cream-colored paper. Bottom covered with blue paper.
Attributed to Sister Emma J. Neale of the Church Family, Mount Lebanon. Sister Emma was known to have made these boxes for sale. According to Jerry Grant, Director of Research and Collections, the heart-shaped box is an extremely rare form; there are fewer than six known examples. In addition to the finished box, the Museum also holds the wood forms and pre-cut bottoms used to make them. See this blog post for more information: https://shakerml.org/why-did-the-shakers-switch-from-palm-leaf-to-poplar/