Through a paper looking glass: Reality and mythology in the personal identities of pioneer women, 1860–1930
Fogle, Mary Katherine
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The purpose of this study was to analyze the identities and perceptions of pioneer women in the West between 1860 and 1930; specifically, this study addresses the Anglo women who settled in Texas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Kansas, North Dakota and South Dakota. This thesis examines western women's reactions to the landscape of the West, the problems and successes of western marriages, the ability of western women to procure financial or political independence, and addresses the similarities and differences between the experiences of western civilian women and military officers' wives in the West. This work utilizes a wide array of primary and secondary source literature, including the Western History Archives at the University of Oklahoma and published diaries and memoirs, to show the transformation of women on the western frontier from a group governed by the rules of the Cult of True Womanhood into a group of independent, decisive, active women.