A Beautiful Glittering Lie
One bullet can make a man a hero… or a casualty.

What does 'housewives' mean?

Find out what housewives means. Housewives is explained by J D R Hawkins - author of A Beautiful Glittering Lie

housewives

Small sewing kits soldiers used to repair their clothing.

The term "housewives" as they were used by Civil War soldiers is referred to in my book, A Beautiful Glittering Lie as follows:

(Pages 66-67)
The regiment joined with General Joseph E. Johns-ton’s Army of the Shenandoah, and was attached to Brigadier General Barnard E. Bee’s 3rd Brigade. For the remainder of the week, the recruits enjoyed their leisurely life, faithfully attended Sunday services, read their prayer books, and learned how to fend for themselves by performing duties traditionally left for the womenfolk, such as cooking and darning. The soldiers received sewing kits called housewives, and variations of religious literature from the Army Christian Association, pamphlets that were referred to as tracts, and entitled, “Prepare for Battle,” “A Mother’s Parting Words to Her Soldier Boy,” and “Sufferings of the Lost.” The Alabamians filled their time with scripture, or sang hymns, such as “Nearer My God to Thee” and “How Sweet the Sound.”

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Chapter 3: Chapter Three
"...Bee’s Third Brigade. For the remainder of the week, the recruits enjoyed their leisurely life, faithfully attended Sunday services, read their prayer books, and learned how to fend for themselves by performing duties traditionally left for the womenfolk, such as cooking and darning. The soldiers received sewing kits called housewives, and variations of religious literature from the Army Christian Association, pamphlets that were referred to as tracts, and entitled, “Prepare for Battle,” “A Mother’s Parting Words to Her Soldier Boy,” and “Sufferings of the Lost.” The Alabamians filled their time with scripture, or sang hymns, such as “Nearer My ..."

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