Women and the Home    
"The housewife makes the home and the home makes the nation."

Mother and child Culture Sick husband

One of the most significant changes to American culture in the late nineteenth century was the shift in women's roles. In addition to the anxiety experienced by most Americans as a result of rapid industrialization, advice givers, like Catharine Beecher and Sara Hale, were concerned that the home was no longer considered sacred and women were not being appreciated for their role maintaining "the light of home".

This resulted in a proliferation of advice in magazines and art. Over 50 advice magazines and books were published per year in the last three decades of the nineteenth century. Most of the images in this site are from the most influential advice magazine of the nineteenth century, Godey's Lady's Book. The areas of advice that can be explored through this website are decorating and housekeeping, motherhood, marriage, and preserving culture.

While many women fulfilled their "responsibilities", a large number of women responded to this attempt to define and limit their roles with their own literature and work in the feminist movement.

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