Southern women of the 1860's, as here revealed with the help of their own letters and diaries, were decidedly not the clinging vines described in romantic writings of later years. In a very real sense, the tragic Civil War was, for the Confederates, a women's war. Women were ardent in advocating secession. Women were indefatigable in running farms and families and infirmaries while their men fought. Throughout the hopeless war, the women conducted themselves in ways that earned the solid respect of their men, and in ways that won for women the first measured gains toward equality. Before the Confederacy was crushed, real hunger spread across the South. Clothing and shelter were hard to find. Inflation raged. Confederate women were subjected to unimaginable hardship; the farm wife and the aristocratic belle suffered alike, and often together. They wrote to husbands and sons in service. Their early letters were strong, confident, and encouraging. Later letters became poignant, often imperfectly masking forebodings of further calamity. But even during the war's desperate final months, a complaining letter was a rarity. Confederate women were strong, and they were proud.
Hardcover: 204 pages
Publisher: Barnes & Noble; Reprint edition (1994)
Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.7 x 0.9 inches