Tracing Pedigree Ladies successfully in the 21st century requires an examination of their every day lives: ladies’ work, ladies’ skills, ladies’ duties, ladies’ contacts, ladies’ responsibilities when they become ancestors. Most historical treatments in the past overlooked or ignored the role women played, except peripherally, developing certain stereotypes about women--especially the idea that they did not work outside the home. Even the census takers messed up--recording almost all ladies as housekeepers, which they were; yet, ignoring what else they did during their lives.
A woman approached me at the conclusion of a recent conference to exclaim, "You are so right! I gave my autobiography to my grandchildren for Christmas-and I never said one word about the jobs I held. The work I did. Or even my special services classification with the U.S. Government."
Since surviving historical sources included the ladies on your pedigree, you can still go back and identify them: in the family, in the workplace, in social reform, and in the military.
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