Friday, March 8, 2013

America's women in the Revolutionary Era : Featured library resource for March 2013

At the February program meeting, the Society received a marvelous gift from the local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). This substantial three-volume set is titled in full America's women in the Revolutionary Era, 1760-1790 : a history through bibliography, and was published in 2011.   Editor Eric G. Grundset is the DAR Library Director, and the book compiles references to revolutionary era women in books, dissertations, articles and online documents, from contemporary 18th century to present day sources.

The three volumes in this set cover the same material, accessed in different ways: subjects (v.1 and 2), authors, and a chronology of publications (v.3). Detailed citations provide information on names of women covered, chapter or article headings, and often brief annotations about the scope of the information as it pertains to women.  Although many famous women are covered, there is a conscious effort to include information on the lives of everyday women and girls, to give a well-rounded depiction of how life was lived by our ancestors in revolutionary times.

The subject chapters are divided into 5 parts: [vol. 1] 1. General studies (includes African American and Native American women); 2. Women in the family and society; 3. Women, culture, education, and creative arts; 4. Women, girls, and the war effort during the American Revolution; [v. 2] 5. Women and girls of the regions and states of the United States.  (Massachusetts is particularly well represented.)  An index to the subject chapters is found at the end of volume 2.

Citations in this book begin as early as 1716 with "Letters to a young lady" by one John Bennett, and end with 2011.  As the brief introduction to the chronology states, "many publishing and topical trends become clear" when citations are viewed chronologically, including the surge of scholarship around the time of the Nation's bicentennial in 1976.

We are grateful to the DAR for this gift and delighted to add it to the holdings of the CCGS Library.  Please stop in to see it!  We are open Tuesdays noon-4, Thursdays 10-4 and Saturdays 10-noon.

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