Judith Throckmorton Ball Singleton wore this dress in Winchester, Virginia. She was born March 14, 1775. Her father, William Ball, owned a plantation the family called "Chapel Green" on the Shenandoah River in what is now Clarke County. She was related to many prominent Virginia families. Judith's gradfather, George Ball, was George Washington's second cousin. Her mother died when she was an adolescent, and her father remarried. In 1797 Judith married James Singleton, an ambitious local man. She and her husband were appointed as guardians of her two younger siblings when her father died. She and James had eight children, three of whom died as children. Their son, James Washington Singleton, became a successful Illinois lawyer, businessman, and prize stock farmer. His military and political service included two terms in the U.S. House of Representatives. Over the years they increased the amount of land they owned. Besides their house in Winchester, they built a house on their farm "Paxton," just outside Winchester. They also had another farm called "River Farm," previously owned by Judith's father. The years 1810 to 1815 were the most prosperous years of their lives. The 1810 Census shows that they owned 35 slaves, both field hands and household servants. James Singleton also served in the Virginia House of Delegates for several terms and was an officer in the Virginia militia, rising to the rank of general. He died suddenly in 1815 when an epidemic swept the area. She wore this dress during this prosperous period. She lived until 1852, living most of the time with her daughter and son-in-law. The dress itself is deceptively simple in its construction. A careful examination shows that it was probably made by a skilled dressmaker. The bodice was cut on the bias so it would stretch over the bust; the creation and insertion of the "poufs" required considerable sewing skills.