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Life in Black and WhiteFamily and Community in the Slave South$
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Brenda E. Stevenson

Print publication date: 1997

Print ISBN-13: 9780195118032

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195118032.001.0001

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Marriage, for Better or for Worse

Marriage, for Better or for Worse

(p.63) 3 Marriage, for Better or for Worse
Life in Black and White

Brenda E. Stevenson

Oxford University Press

This chapter begins with a description of the varying wedding practices among Loudoun's diverse community members—from the simple and frugal affair of the poorer folk to the elaborate and extended parties of the affluent. Life after marriage is also described which, barring differences due to wealth, shows a common trend of familial and even community support for the newlyweds through advice, emotional support, and financial assistance. The often harsh realities of married life in the pre-Civil war South cut across financial and social boundaries though the responsibilities and pressures differed for the wife and the husband. The females had to contend with childbearing and rearing, rigorous domestic duties, and the often unreasonable expectations of a male dominated society. The males, on the other hand, had to deal with the pressures of financial responsibility and maintaining their “face” and status in the community.

Keywords:   marriage, pre-Civil war, South, wedding, wife, husband, Loudoun

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