Martha & her Os

What are the main themes of this essay by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich and why do you think this study of women’s work in the late 18th and early 19th centuries is so important for us to understand and know about today?

In what specific ways would you say that Martha?s role in the community as a midwife is important for her own self esteem, sense of accomplishment and productivity?

Does her role and status in the community change over time? If so, why and what does that mean to her and the people around her, such as the neighbors she serves as well as her own family and husband?

How does she feel about such alterations in her working environment and how does she cope with such detrimental changes in her daily life?

What did you find most interesting and compelling about Martha and her girls? Lastly, how does the film ?A Midwife?s Tale? compliment Ulrich’s essay and the other handouts dealing with her diary?

Why are both the film and the written materials useful and helpful towards a better understanding and comprehension of this historical period in America?s past, especially New England?s past? Explain.








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