Post #12: A Midwife’s Tale

I watched the interesting documentary movie A Midwife’s Tale by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich. This is the same person who said “Well-behaved women seldom make history.” These highlights of Ulrich’s career emphasize her focus on the history of women. I found it interesting that in the Midwife’s Tale, Martha Ballard seems to well-behaved. It is only Martha’s diary that gives her story a place in history. If not for Ulrich analyzing the diary and sharing Martha’s story, it is (in my opinion) likely that few would even recognize Martha Ballard’s story. I found it interesting that as a midwife, Martha was able to make a substantial living compared to other women and she was well respected as a medical authority. This story captures the hardships and sorrows of living in America during the 1700s-early 1800s. Martha worked extremely hard and especially as she got older her quality of life was less not very good. It was also interesting to see the decline in manners that Martha highlighted in her diary as time went on. With a life of taking care of others Martha seemed to get little rest. She was extremely hard-working and caring as well. Martha’s account demonstrated her exceptional values and kindness towards others. Even though Martha was kind and well-behaved, Ulrich was able to highlight her story, providing a great perspective of a woman’s place in history at this time.


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