If you go through old church records, you will see plenty of peculiar
looking marriages that took place in the old villages. Widows marrying men
up to fifteen years younger were rare events but did occur. Newly widowed
men with orphaned infants might marry young girls within days or weeks of
the wife's death, so as to be able to care for the baby. Marriage was a
serious business. Nonetheless, many of these marriages of convenience may
have turned out very happily for the spouses. Certainly many marriages made
"for love" turned out very badly!
----- Original Message -----
From: "frankly1us" <frankur@...>
Sent: Monday, February 18, 2002 3:12 PM
Subject: [S-R] Re: Arranged marriages
> When you speak of arranged marriages you are referring to those
> planned family marriages that occurred in Europe.
> Most emigrants had settled in areas and towns in the U.S. where their
> relatives or sponsors were already resident and established and working.
> Mail order brides from the old country were a way of life, not only
> for Slavic emigrants, but wherever there was a shortage of marriageable
> When the bride-to-be arrived in the U.S., she might meet or have
> met someone else on ship, who appealed to her more than her intended
> In which case, the 'new' prospective groom owed the other intended
> bridegroom or her sponsor the cost of brides's voyage to the U.S.
> And at Ellis Island dentention quarters unmarried young women
> could not leave immigration station unless accompanied by a male relative
> In some cases, the intended groom traveled there so the woman
> could leave detention (as his wife)
> Child brides ?
> While working with U.S. Census enumeration microfilms I noted
> that a younger man sometimes married a much older widow with
> children if her husband had died suddenly, say in a mining
> Sometimes the children were nearly as old as the their new father.
> These weren't love matches either.
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