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It is the combination of elements within this costume that makes it so interesting. Embroidered, open-fronted robes with matching underskirts are more usually associated with the 1760s to 1780s, but the train and the tiny bodice, only two and one-half inches from neckline to waist, preclude any date earlier than about 1798. The matching fichu is extremely rare. Each piece is embroidered with variations on the floral designs rather than mere duplications, suggesting artisanal primacy, not pattern book repetitions. This dress is believed to have belonged to Catherine Beekman (1762-1839), wife of Elisha Boudinot of Princeton, New Jersey.
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