19th Century Early Stays, Or Corset, Possibly French But Worn In America. Worn by Mehetable Stoddard Sumner (Welles), American, 1784–1826. Cotton twill, linen plain weave (lining), cotton plain weave tape (edging), linen twill tape (lacing and drawstring), applied linen twill tape, baleen, silk thread.
DIMENSIONS: Overall (measured closed with shoulder panel laced): 51 x 41 cm (20 1/16 x 16 1/8 in.)
Center front: 41.4 cm (16 5/16 in.)
Lightly boned stays of cotton twill, drawstring across neck, four gussets and three corded bands at bust; empty steel or busk casing down center front, corded side seams, shoulder straps part of a back flap, back flap laced through four sets of holes at side seams, baleen bones in back shoulder flap and lower back sides, empty bone casings along back lacing holes, linen twill tape applied to lacing holes on shoulder flap and back edges, corded back edges, seams and lacing holes sewn with silk thread, edges bound in cotton plain weave tape.
PROVENANCE Inherited by Miss Georgiana Welles Sargent (born 1858) of New York City; Gift of Emily Welles Robbins (Mrs. Harry Pelham Robbins) and the Hon. Sumner Welles, in memory of Georgiana Welles Sargent, to MFA, 1949. ACCESSION NUMBER 49.904
via Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. mfa.org