The Info List - Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

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Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
(born July 11, 1938)[1] is an American historian of early America and the history of women and a professor at Harvard
University.[2] Her approach to history has been described as a tribute to "the silent work of ordinary people"—an approach that, in her words, aims to "show the interconnection between public events and private experience."[citation needed]


1 Early life and education 2 Career

2.1 Famed quote 2.2 A Midwife's Tale 2.3 Other work 2.4 Mormonism

3 Publications 4 See also 5 References 6 Further reading 7 External links

Early life and education[edit] Ulrich was born in Sugar City, Idaho
Sugar City, Idaho
to John Kenneth Thatcher, schoolteacher and superintendent as well as state legislator and farmer; and Alice Siddoway Thatcher.[1] She graduated from the University of Utah, majoring in English and journalism, and gave the valedictory speech at commencement.[1] In 1971, she earned a master's degree in English at Simmons College and a doctorate in history from the University of New Hampshire in1980.[1] Career[edit] Famed quote[edit] In a 1976 scholarly article about little-studied Puritan
funeral services, Ulrich included the phrase "well-behaved women seldom make history."[3][4] The phrase was picked up and soon went viral, being widely quoted and printed across the country. It continues to be seen on greeting cards, T-shirts, mugs, plaques, and bumper stickers. She recounted how her now-famous quote has taken on a life of its own in an October 2007 interview: "It was a weird escape into popular culture. I got constant e-mails about it, and I thought it was humorous. Then I started looking at where it was coming from. Once I turned up as a character in a novel—and a tennis star from India wore the T-shirt at Wimbledon. It seemed like a teaching moment—and so I wrote a book using the title."[5] Well-Behaved Women examines the ways in which women shaped history, citing examples from the lives of Rosa Parks, Christine de Pizan, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Harriet Tubman, and Virginia Woolf. A Midwife's Tale[edit] A Midwife's Tale examines the life of Northern New England midwife Martha Ballard, and provides a vivid examination of ordinary life in the early American republic, including the role of women in the household and local market economy, the nature of marriage and sexual relations, aspects of medical practice, and the prevalence of violence and crime. Ulrich's revelatory history was honored with the Pulitzer Prize. A Midwife's Tale also received the Bancroft Prize, the John H. Dunning Prize, the Joan Kelly Memorial Prize, the Berkshire Conference of Women Historians Book Prize, the Society for Historians of the Early Republic Book Prize, the William Henry Welch Medal of the American Association for the History of Medicine, and the New England Historical Association Award. A Midwife's Tale was later developed into a documentary film for the PBS series American Experience, with Ulrich serving as a consultant, script collaborator, and narrator. The book also helped her secure a "Genius Grant" from the MacArthur Fellows Program.[6] The book became a landmark in women's labor history since it provides scholars with rich insights into the life of a lay American rural healer around 1800.[7] It rests not on the observations of outsiders, but on the words of the woman herself. At first glance, Ballard's encoded, repetitive, and quotidian diary often appears trivial, but as Ulrich found, "it is in the very dailiness, the exhaustive, repetitious dailiness, that the real power of Martha Ballard's book lies... For her, living was to be measured in doing."[7]:9 By knitting together "ordinary" sources to produce a meaningful, extraordinary socio-cultural narrative, Ulrich shows how a skilled practitioner functioned within the interstices of the private and public spheres. A Midwife's Tale was not only methodologically influential for scholars, but also theoretically important. By showing clearly the economic contributions that midwives made to their households and local communities, and demonstrating the organizational skill of multitasking as a source of female empowerment, the book revises the understanding of prescribed gender roles. While A Midwife's Tale is obviously limited in terms of time (1785–1812) and place (rural Maine), it has attracted sustained attention of historians—especially those interested in gender relations and wage-earning, the economic value of domestic labor, and women's work before industrialization.[7] Other work[edit] In January 2017, Ulrich's book A House Full of Females: Plural Marriage and Women's Rights in Early Mormonism, was released. This text explores Mormon
women living in Utah during the 19th century who had entered into plural marriages. Ulrich argues that this system was both complicated and empowering for the women in these relationships.[8] Mormonism[edit] Ulrich self-identifies as an active feminist and Mormon, and has written about her experiences.[9] She also co-edited (with Emma Lou Thayne) All God's Critters Got a Place in the Choir, a collection of essays about the lives of Mormon
women. Ulrich was a founding member of the Exponent II, an independent publication on the experience of Mormon
women. In late 1992, Brigham Young University's board of trustees vetoed without comment a BYU proposal to invite Ulrich to address the annual BYU Women's Conference. Ulrich did give addresses at BYU in 2004[10] and 2006.[11] At Harvard, Ulrich is actively involved in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She is the adviser for the undergraduate Latter-day Saint Student Association, the Mormon
campus club, and teaches an Institute of Religion
Institute of Religion
class.[citation needed] Personal life While she was an undergraduate student, she married Gael Ulrich, now emeritus professor of chemical engineering at the University of New Hampshire.[1] Together they had five children: Karl (b. 1960), Melinda (b. 1963), Nathan (b. 1964), Thatcher (b. 1969), and Amy (b. 1975).[1] Publications[edit]


A House Full of Females: Plural Marriage and Women's Rights in Early Mormonism, 1835-1870. (2017). Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. ISBN 978-0307594907 Well-Behaved Women Seldom Make History. (2007). Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. ISBN 978-1-4000-4159-6 Editor, Yards and Gates: Gender in Harvard
and Radcliffe History. (2004). Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN 1-4039-6098-4 The Age of Homespun: Objects and Stories in the Creation of an American Myth. (2001). Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. ISBN 0-679-44594-3 All God's Critters Got a Place in the Choir, a collection of essays coauthored with the Utah poet Emma Lou Thayne. (1995). Aspen Books, ISBN 1-56236-226-7 A Midwife’s Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard based on her diary, 1785–1812. (1990). Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. ISBN 0-394-56844-3. Reissued in Vintage paperback, ISBN 0-679-73376-0 Good Wives: Image and Reality in the Lives of Women in Northern New England, 1650–1750. (1982). Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. ISBN 0-394-51940-X. Reissued by Vintage (1991), ISBN 0-679-73257-8

Online articles

"How Betsy Ross Became Famous" in Common-Place Vol. 8, No. 1 (October 2007), American Antiquarian Society[dead link] "An American Album, 1857", 2009 Presidential Address to the American Historical Association

See also[edit]



^ a b c d e f Pearsall, Sarah; Sword, Kirsten. "Laurel Thatcher Ulrich Biography". General Meeting Booklet, 2010 AHA Annual Meeting. American Historical Association.  ^ Gewertz, Ken (February 2, 2006). "Two University Professors appointed". Harvard
Gazette. Archived from the original on 2011-06-29.  ^ "Laurel Thatcher Ulrich: Publications: Vertuous Women Found: New England Ministerial Literature, 1668-1735". scholar.harvard.edu. Harvard
University. Retrieved April 12, 2016.  ^ Foster, David (March 6, 2008), "Well-Behaved Women? Harvard Historian Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
Lectures on March 5", College News, Hamilton College, archived from the original on August 3, 2012  ^ Lythgoe, Dennis (21 October 2007). "Ulrich touts women in history". Deseret Morning News. p. E10. Archived from the original on 2013-09-27.  ^ Prince, Gregory A. (2016). Leonard Arrington and the Writing of Mormon
history. Salt Lake City, UT: University of Utah
University of Utah
Press. p. 433.  ^ a b c Tunc, Tanfer Emin (June 2010), "Midwifery and Women's Work in the Early American Republic: A Reconsideration of Laurel Thatcher Ulrich's 'A Midwife's Tale'" (paywall), The Historical Journal, 53 (2): 423–428, doi:10.1017/s0018246x10000105  ^ Gross, Terry (17 January 2017). "How Mormon
Polygamy In The 19th Century Fueled Women's Activism". www.NPR.org. Retrieved 19 January 2017.  ^ Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher (June 2002), "A Pail of Cream", The Journal of American History, 89 (1): 43–47, doi:10.2307/2700782, archived from the original on 2012-10-15  ^ Wilson, Robin (March 24, 2006), "A Well-Behaved Scholar Makes History" (paywall), The Chronicle of Higher Education, 52 (29), p. A12  ^ "Richard L. Bushman Colloquium". Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship. Retrieved 2017-01-15. 

Further reading[edit]

Marshall, Megan (September 4, 2007), "Laurel Thatcher Ulrich's Well-Behaved Women Seldom Make History", Slate 

External links[edit]

Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, faculty, History Department, Harvard University dohistory.org – an online version of Martha Ballard's diary and information about "A Midwife's Tale", a joint project of Harvard University and George Mason University Works by or about Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
in libraries (WorldCat catalog) Appearances on C-SPAN

v t e

Presidents of the American Historical Association


Andrew Dickson White
Andrew Dickson White
(1884-85) George Bancroft
George Bancroft
(1886) Justin Winsor
Justin Winsor
(1887) William Frederick Poole
William Frederick Poole
(1888) Charles Kendall Adams
Charles Kendall Adams
(1889) John Jay (1890) William Wirt Henry (1891) James Burrill Angell
James Burrill Angell
(1892-93) Henry Adams
Henry Adams
(1893-94) George Frisbie Hoar
George Frisbie Hoar
(1895) Richard Salter Storrs
Richard Salter Storrs
(1896) James Schouler (1897) George Park Fisher (1898) James Ford Rhodes
James Ford Rhodes
(1899) Edward Eggleston
Edward Eggleston


Charles Francis Adams Jr.
Charles Francis Adams Jr.
(1901) Alfred Thayer Mahan
Alfred Thayer Mahan
(1902) Henry Charles Lea
Henry Charles Lea
(1903) Goldwin Smith
Goldwin Smith
(1904) John Bach McMaster
John Bach McMaster
(1905) Simeon Eben Baldwin
Simeon Eben Baldwin
(1906) J. Franklin Jameson (1907) George Burton Adams (1908) Albert Bushnell Hart
Albert Bushnell Hart
(1909) Frederick Jackson Turner
Frederick Jackson Turner
(1910) William Milligan Sloane
William Milligan Sloane
(1911) Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore Roosevelt
(1912) William Archibald Dunning (1913) Andrew C. McLaughlin
Andrew C. McLaughlin
(1914) H. Morse Stephens
H. Morse Stephens
(1915) George Lincoln Burr
George Lincoln Burr
(1916) Worthington C. Ford (1917) William Roscoe Thayer
William Roscoe Thayer
(1918-19) Edward Channing (1920) Jean Jules Jusserand
Jean Jules Jusserand
(1921) Charles Homer Haskins
Charles Homer Haskins
(1922) Edward Potts Cheyney
Edward Potts Cheyney
(1923) Woodrow Wilson
Woodrow Wilson
(1924) Charles McLean Andrews
Charles McLean Andrews


Dana Carleton Munro
Dana Carleton Munro
(1926) Henry Osborn Taylor (1927) James Henry Breasted
James Henry Breasted
(1928) James Harvey Robinson
James Harvey Robinson
(1929) Evarts Boutell Greene (1930) Carl L. Becker (1931) Herbert Eugene Bolton
Herbert Eugene Bolton
(1932) Charles A. Beard
Charles A. Beard
(1933) William Dodd (1934) Michael Rostovtzeff
Michael Rostovtzeff
(1935) Charles Howard McIlwain (1936) Guy Stanton Ford (1937) Laurence M. Larson (1938) William Scott Ferguson (1939) Max Farrand
Max Farrand
(1940) James Westfall Thompson (1941) Arthur M. Schlesinger Sr. (1942) Nellie Neilson (1943) William Linn Westermann
William Linn Westermann
(1944) Carlton J. H. Hayes (1945) Sidney Bradshaw Fay (1946) Thomas J. Wertenbaker
Thomas J. Wertenbaker
(1947) Kenneth Scott Latourette
Kenneth Scott Latourette
(1948) Conyers Read (1949) Samuel Eliot Morison
Samuel Eliot Morison


Robert Livingston Schuyler (1951) James G. Randall (1952) Louis R. Gottschalk (1953) Merle Curti (1954) Lynn Thorndike
Lynn Thorndike
(1955) Dexter Perkins (1956) William L. Langer (1957) Walter Prescott Webb
Walter Prescott Webb
(1958) Allan Nevins
Allan Nevins
(1959) Bernadotte Everly Schmitt (1960) Samuel Flagg Bemis (1961) Carl Bridenbaugh (1962) Crane Brinton (1963) Julian P. Boyd (1964) Frederic C. Lane (1965) Roy Franklin Nichols (1966) Hajo Holborn (1967) John K. Fairbank (1968) C. Vann Woodward
C. Vann Woodward
(1969) Robert Roswell Palmer (1970) David M. Potter (1971) Joseph Strayer (1971) Thomas C. Cochran (1972) Lynn Townsend White Jr. (1973) Lewis Hanke (1974) Gordon Wright (1975)


Richard B. Morris (1976) Charles Gibson (1977) William J. Bouwsma (1978) John Hope Franklin (1979) David H. Pinkney (1980) Bernard Bailyn (1981) Gordon A. Craig
Gordon A. Craig
(1982) Philip D. Curtin (1983) Arthur S. Link (1984) William H. McNeill (1985) Carl Neumann Degler (1986) Natalie Zemon Davis
Natalie Zemon Davis
(1987) Akira Iriye (1988) Louis R. Harlan (1989) David Herlihy (1990) William Leuchtenburg (1991) Frederic Wakeman (1992) Louise A. Tilly (1993) Thomas C. Holt (1994) John Henry Coatsworth (1995) Caroline Bynum (1996) Joyce Appleby (1997) Joseph C. Miller (1998) Robert Darnton
Robert Darnton
(1999) Eric Foner
Eric Foner


William Roger Louis (2001) Lynn Hunt (2002) James M. McPherson
James M. McPherson
(2003) Jonathan Spence (2004) James J. Sheehan
James J. Sheehan
(2005) Linda K. Kerber (2006) Barbara Weinstein (2007) Gabrielle M. Spiegel (2008) Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
(2009) Barbara D. Metcalf (2010) Anthony Grafton
Anthony Grafton
(2011) William Cronon
William Cronon
(2012) Kenneth Pomeranz
Kenneth Pomeranz
(2013) Jan E. Goldstein (2014) Vicki L. Ruiz (2015) Patrick Manning (2016) Tyler E. Stovall (2017) Mary Beth Norton (2018)

v t e

Pulitzer Prize
Pulitzer Prize
for History (1976–2000)

Paul Horgan (1976) David M. Potter (completed and edited by Don E. Fehrenbacher) (1977) Alfred D. Chandler Jr. (1978) Don E. Fehrenbacher
Don E. Fehrenbacher
(1979) Leon Litwack (1980) Lawrence A. Cremin (1981) C. Vann Woodward
C. Vann Woodward
(1982) Rhys Isaac
Rhys Isaac
(1983) Thomas K. McCraw (1985) Walter A. McDougall (1986) Bernard Bailyn (1987) Robert V. Bruce (1988) James M. McPherson/ Taylor Branch
Taylor Branch
(1989) Stanley Karnow
Stanley Karnow
(1990) Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
(1991) Mark E. Neely Jr. (1992) Gordon S. Wood
Gordon S. Wood
(1993) Doris Kearns Goodwin
Doris Kearns Goodwin
(1995) Alan Taylor (1996) Jack N. Rakove (1997) Edward Larson
Edward Larson
(1998) Edwin G. Burrows and Mike Wallace (1999) David M. Kennedy (2000)

Complete list (1917–1925) (1926–1950) (1951–1975) (1976–2000) (2001–2025)

Authority control

Identities VIAF: 309714510 LCCN: n81111983 ISNI: 0000 0001 0925 1875 GND: 1055719415 SELIBR: 200181 SUDOC: 172078369 BNF: cb12941153x (data