The Civil War Homefront

Drew Gilpin Faust
National Park Service

“In a two-volume History of Woman Suffrage, published in 1882, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Gage hailed the war as transformative. ‘The social and political condition of women was largely changed by our Civil War,’ they wrote. ‘In large measure,’ they explained, it was because war ‘created a revolution in woman herself.’ In the North, the war provided a catalyst for women’s advancement into both professional nursing and medicine…which leads historian Elizabeth Leonard to conclude that northern nurses ‘trespassed en masse into the public sphere‘ and became ‘wielders of a new kind of institutional power previously hoarded by men.'”

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