A detailed and historical, 19th century, school "Certificate of Distinction" from the "Albemarle Female Institute of Charlottesville, Virginia"!
Text indicates that the certificate was awarded to Emma Shannon on June 12, 1885 (Or 1883--difficult to read as the date is partially concealed under the frame edge). The certificate recognizes that Emma excelled in Latin, Arithmetic, History of France, Rhetoric, and English Literature. Signed by W. P. Dickinson, President of the Faculty.
With the exception of early fold lines, a water stain in the upper left corner, and two small circular age stains on the lower left and within the word "distinction", condition is quite nice!
Measures 16.25 inches X 12.25 inches framed. The piece is framed in wood and is beautifully grain-painted in brown and black tones with delicate, cream-toned, chip-carved stems and leaves at each of the four corners. Original wood backing remains in place.
Once located at the intersection of 10th and Jefferson Streets in downtown Charlottesville, the Albemarle Female Institute was founded in 1853 as a University School for young women by Baptist pastor John A. Broadus. In 1861, one of Charlottesville's most famous 19th century women, Charlotte "Lottie" Moon, earned one of the first Master of Arts degrees ever awarded to a woman by a southern educational institution during this time period. Fluent in Latin, Greek, French, and Italian, Lottie was called to serve as a Baptist missionary in China, devoting 40 years of her life to that mission.