Word of Mouth
9:56 am
Thu May 22, 2014

The Bride Wore Black

All Dressed in White - it's the title of author Carol Wallace's look into the history of the American wedding, but it hasn't always held true for brides. On the frontier - a culture centered around migrant work & making do - a woman may only have a single good dress, designed for a decidedly different purpose.

A girl would wear her best dress, which very often was black, because one tradition there was no shaking was a black dress for a funeral - and people died. People died a lot... so, every woman would have had a serviceable & relatively fashionable black dress, and she would simply dress it up for her wedding, with white lace or perhaps with a little bit of artificial orange blossom.

Carol Wallace on the history of American wedding traditions

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