There is no doubt that becoming more knowledgeable about the laws, social conventions and customs of the era your women lived in is important. Unless you think about the broader historical context of women’s lives in various historical periods and study the laws and conventions therein you will not know what to do when the same old problem emerges: the names of women are missing and how we construct their history will remain limited and bare.
See my website www.writingfamilyhistory.com.au for lists of books and other resources for researching and writing about women.
A good example of this is how women fared in relation to property after marriage, their rights to care for and be with their children, separation and divorce, and domestic violence. More about this in a later post.
My Aunt Wilhelmein Florence Kyle and Ernest Chaffey on their wedding day in 1927, with Wilhelmein's dress in a suitably shortened 1920s style, and her headdress that could from a Downtown Abbey set!! Wilhelmein was born in 1907, the eldest child of my paternal Grandfather Billy Kyle and Florence Maude Matilda Rose. Wilhelmein died in a car accident in 1951.