Prevailing attitudes in the nineteenth century depicted women as naturally different from men. Many people believed that women's talents made them particularly suited to gently nurture and serve others. While men were expected to succeed in the public world, women were advised to avoid commerce and politics and to restrict their activities to the home, the church, and the company of other women. Diaries and other writings of people in Illinois reflect many of these attitudes.
© Illinois State Museum 31-Dec-96