Only Chapter 10 Of This Book. (Gail Collins' 2003 Book, America's Women: Four Hundred Years Of – Book Report/Review Example
Philosophy Chapter 10: Women go west: Pioneers, Homesteaders, and the Fair but Frail The history of the American woman was mostly based on migration and quest for freedom. In 1841, Nancy Kelsey, age 17, was the first woman to travel to California on a wagon train. She celebrated her birthday on the summit of Sierra and occasionally followed her husband with whom they had ten children. According to Collins (2003), it was clear that the poor migrated less often and that pioneer women ensured that their daughters led healthy lifestyles. However, these women did most of the tasks in harsh conditions.
During the migration, there were ups and downs as stated in the text. One wrote, “She washes the diapers out every night and made her husband hold them over campfire until they dried” (Collins, 2003). This migration saw others dead because of health conditions such as cholera, while others died from strange happenings like horse kicks and rattlesnake bites. Despite all these, some persevered to reach the West where the female pioneers enjoyed some denied advantages. They lived in pleasant, comfortable houses unlike the crowded cities and gold mining camps of California.
As justified in Collins (2003), it was found that women were more industrious than men. Some also ventured into prostitution “the fair but frail” which earned them a profit of up to $16 for just sitting at a man’s table. Despite the fact that the past was marked with severe hardships for the women, they were granted some of the denied favors and gained fame and respect. This showed that their journey was not in vain as they begun to experience some of the joys that came with being in a new, civilized environment.
Collins, G. (2003). America’s women: Four hundred years of dolls, drudges, helpmates, and heroines. New York: Bantam Books.