Tuesday, May 8, 2018

The Role of Women in the Early Virginia Colony

Wives for the Settlers at Jamestown by William Ludwell Sheppard 1876

The men fish, hunt, fowle, goe to the wars, make the weeres, botes, and such like manly exercises and all laboures abroad. The women, as the weaker sort, be put to the easier workes, to sow their corne, to weed and cleanse the same . . . for, by reason of the rankness and lustines of the grownd, such weedes spring up very easely and thick . . . likewise the women plant and attend the gardins, dresse the meate brought home, make their broaths and pockerchicory drinckes, make matts and basketts, pownd their wheat, make their bread, prepare their vessels, beare all kindes of burthens, and such like, and to which the children sett their handes, helping their mothers.

Source: William Strachey, The Historie of Travaile into Virginia Britannia (1612).