Yankee Destinies: The Lives of Ordinary Nineteenth-Century Bostonians

By Peter R. Knights | Go to book overview

2 Marriage and Children

A MAN'S WEALTH depends more on his wife than [on] his income. Some women will cause their husbands to become rich on five hundred a year; others can scarcely keep out of jail on five thousand. Saving has made more fortunes than getting one. If married men are poor, in nine cases out of ten, it is their wives' fault.

-- Boston Evening Transcript, 13 May 1853, 4/1

DEATH THROUGH IGNORANCE. The [ Boston] Commonwealth states that in Roxbury, yesterday, an Irishwoman named Toomey, having heard that a quantity of tobacco steeped in milk would operate as an excellent vermifuge for children, procured the wicked dose and administered it to her own child, only a year old, causing its death in less than an hour and a half.

-- Boston Evening Transcript, 8 July 1851, 2/3

A MOTHER'S LOVE. We learn from the [ Boston] Journal that Mrs. * Daniel Warren of 528 Commercial street, on Tuesday afternoon missed her little son [ Charles M.], eighteen months old, and found him at the eaves of the roof, sitting in the gutter with his feet hanging over the outer edge. The little fellow was screaming with all his might, and without for a moment thinking of the danger to which she was exposed, she slipped down the roof to the eaves, and seizing her darling boy, bore him in safety to the attic, when she instantly fainted, and it was with much difficulty that she was restored to consciousness. 1

-- Boston Evening Transcript, 12 July 1855, 1/5

-37-

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Yankee Destinies: The Lives of Ordinary Nineteenth-Century Bostonians
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Tables ix
  • Maps xv
  • Acknowledgments xvii
  • Introduction 1
  • 1 - Origins 13
  • 2 - Marriage and Children 37
  • 3 - Making a Living 63
  • 4 - Perils of Everyday Life 101
  • 5 - Leaving Boston 125
  • 6 - Death 151
  • Appendix a Methods and Sources 171
  • Appendix B Unconsidered Trifles 201
  • Appendix C Missing Sample Members 207
  • Notes 213
  • Bibliography 241
  • Index 267
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