Gender Roles In The Civil War Essay

1375 Words 6 Pages
The American Civil War was fought between the northern and southern soldiers during 1861-1865. This war played a crucial part in shaping the opinions of citizens and provisional gender roles during war time; females were encouraged to help aid the soldiers. Ladies at this time were “vivandieres” who were often known to accompany and provide support to the Union and Confederate army. A handful of women also impersonated themselves as men and joined the fight, while many other females were nurses and spies. As thousands of enslaved ladies were just beginning to be freed, they began their new lives surrounded by the barbarity and midst of the war. When the war was put to an end, 160,000 ladies were left mourning about their family members who …show more content…
White and black women had the same rights; however, racial prejudice made it difficult to determine the black women’s privilege. The females legal rights were determined on her social status and where she had settled in; “Single women could enter into contracts, buy and sell real estate, or accumulate personal property, which was called personalty” (gilder lehrman). Married women at the time relied heavily on her husband as legal statuses changed immensely and they no longer had independence. Coverture was an assumption that a family was best functioned with a male head of a household that choreographed all the virtues; anything a women brought into her marriage, her husband was allowed to direct it or give it away, as he pleased, without letting his wife know. If a married women were ever to become widowed, she would be supported and a dower granted everything that her husband owned. Women at the time still focused on daily chores such as caring for their family, gardening, and household (Middle …show more content…
Today, people all around notably remember women during the Civil War as nurses. The most renowned nurse at the time was Clara Barton, who later was the founder of the American Red Cross. Ironically, the Northern and Southern unions surgeons demoralized the female nurses to work in official military hospitals. Schultz noted “Throughout the nineteenth century, women were excluded from medical networks on the basis of biological determinism that cast them as unfit to endure the intellectual and physical rigors of doctoring.” Female nurses were doomed to encounter the military surgeons temper and by civilian bureaucrats who placed these policies. Being a nurse during war time was difficult due to the barbaric environment they had to work in. The female nurses had to prove that they were fit to do the job and help aid soldiers at the

Related Documents