Sunday, September 6, 2009

15. America's Women

Dear Followers,

Exciting news! As you know, The Self-Empowered Woman is now on sale at, and my first official book signing event is scheduled to take place on Friday, October 9th at 2:30 PM at Saks Fifth Ave. on Worth Avenue in Palm Beach. Champagne and strawberries (and stories about interesting women) will be served. Hope to see you there!

I wanted to share with you an amazing book by an amazing woman. Gail Collins was the first female head of The New York Times editorial board, and has also written for The New York Daily News and New York Newsday. I stumbled across her 3rd book a while ago, and felt that I had to share it with you.

In "American Women" Collins takes a look at women in America from the 1600s to the 1960s, and manages to make what in theory is a history book read, instead, like an interesting conversation with a well informed friend. Thanks to Collins I've learned about the genuine hardships that Colonial Women faced when they landed here from England. For example, did you know that 6,000 people came to Virginia between 1607 and 1624, but by 1625 only 1,200 were still alive? The colonies' sponsors were so anxious to get women to cross the Atlantic that London recruiters offered marriageable women free passage, trousseaus, and 120 pounds of "good leaf tobacco" for their future husbands. In 1620 the first shipment of 90 "tobacco brides" arrived in Jamestown.

Although women were in demand and highly prized for their ability to help with weaving (fabric was a real luxury), cooking, soap making, etc., they essentially had no legal rights if they were married. Collins' book is a real eyeopener about the day-to-day lives of the amazing women who settled America's Eastern seaboard. I only wish I'd read this "good-for-you and good-to-you" book the minute it came off the press, but better late than never.

Looking forward to your feedback...

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