Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Notorious Elizabeth Tuttle

Chamberlain, Ava. The Notorious Elizabeth Tuttle: Marriage, Murder, and Madness in the Family of Jonathan Edwards. New York: NYU Press, 2012.

Chamberlain has done an incredible job reconstructing the life of Jonathan Edwards' grandmother Elizabeth Tuttle from a few existing records and a microhistorical approach. By studying the rest of the family and the community in which she lived, we are able to learn much more about the woman she was or might have been. Edwards' grandfather was granted a divorce from Tuttle in the state of Connecticut which had some of the most liberal divorce laws and remarried a short time later. This is a very well-done book and should serve as an example to researchers on how to incorporate aspects of culture, laws, social history, and the like to bring a person to life. This review is based upon an advanced reader's e-galley provided by the publisher through NetGalley.  (5 stars)

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