Southern Women Before, During & After the Civil War

2810 words 12 pages
The women of southern plantations are something that not many write about. There is a critical lack of information and books about them, which makes writing about her a difficult task. Many southern women are mentioned in many books only as part of the males. “It was not until the early 1970’s, with the advent of the women’s movement, that a book written by a Southern woman about Southern women was recognized as being of scholarly significance…” The wealthy white women of the south spent most of their time in the home. They raised the children and acted as teachers in many cases, teaching reading, writing and religion. White women (of all classes) in the south suffered under heavier burdens than northern women. They married earlier, …show more content…

Women participated in decisions about the children’s education, and the men sometimes relieved wives of the burdens of tending to infants. Nonetheless, traditional attitudes toward marriage found universal acceptance in the South.” It was the responsibility of the woman to run the household and they were expected to sacrifice their own interests and to devote themselves to their husbands almost entirely. Many believed that while marriage was a pleasant duty for a man, it was the sole reason for a woman’s existence. Her job was to continue the family and be a helpmate to her man. Most married before they were twenty and many married before they were even sixteen. Marriage was considered a family matter and men would be remiss to ask a girl to marry him without first the permission of her father and of his own father. Life for the poorer women in the south was a cycle of household duties. Their diversions usually included the work that they had to do anyways. Spinning matches, candle-dipping, and quilting parties were common. “When a housewife finished sewing together the pieces for a patchwork quilt, she invited her neighbors to spend the day or the afternoon with her and quilt it.” Fairs were also a popular pastime as it got the women out of the house and provided them with a place to socialize with their friends


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