Discussion 5: Marriage and the American Revolution I

Please sit in the following groups:

1. Coquette Newspapers / Adams Laws
Rachel Donaldson Becca Chornock Ashley Jacob
Dom Maican Leah Forss Kristen Lucero
Ryan Rathberger Danielle Thomas Ryan Briles
Katherine Weber Rich Nora Julia Napolitano
Sarah Bennett Ainsley Sherlock Stephani Allan
Patrick Lennon Amir Corsaro Jennifer Zeigner
  Patrick Dohogne  


  1. Usual: Identify who/what/when/where/why for your sources.
  2. If Kathleen Brown or Laurel Ulrich were to expand her book to include this week’s primary source readings, what would they do with them?
  3. Do your read your source(s) as telling story about change? If so, what changed and when? What doesn't change?
  4. Come up with specific evidence from the readings to explain the expectations the following people might have about marriage: Why would they want to marry? Why did or didn’t they choose to marry?
      • Sarah – slave of Sarah Slaughter
      • Eunice Davis
      • Eliza Wharton
      • Samuel Huggins
      • Peter Sanford
      • Fortunatus
  5. Imagine you are the lawyer of one of the unhappily married persons who appear in these newspaper ads, or of Peter Sanford or his wife. What advice would give this person about their legal options? Would this person's “friends” (meaning kin and social network) give the same or different advice? Be sure to specify whom you’ve chosen as your client, and to base your advice on the legal rules found in the William Blackstone and Thomas Jefferson readings. What objections might advocates of this person's spouse raise if the case went to court?


Your Questions (How might you answer these historically? / What do the texts say?):