Martha Dandridge Custis Washington was born into a world of elite social custom and privilege in the 1730s. Little did she know that she would marry twice, give birth to four children — losing two of them to illness in childhood — and bear witness to the Revolution and the creation of a new nation. This site will allow you to explore the contours of Martha Washington’s life while also providing you with a window on women’s lives during the 18th century, including women’s access to property and education, their role in the Revolution, their thoughts on the promises of rights called for in the founding documents, and their everyday experiences of marriage, motherhood, labor, sickness, and death.
The site includes:
- a narrative of Martha Washington’s life, with a rich selection of historical materials associated with her story;
- teaching modules for students and teachers focused on 18th century sociability, slavery at Mount Vernon, and the Revolutionary War;
- an archive of historical items, including Martha Washington’s correspondence, art work, material culture objects, and other important documents
- a collection of resources including a bibliography of additional secondary sources and related websites.