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September 3, 2023

35 Lovely Portrait Photos of Mothers With Their Children in the Mid-19th Century

Nineteenth-Century moms faced some tough issues. They were expected to be tireless as they worked around the clock to hold the home together. They also had to be self-sacrificing and cheerful, no matter what was thrown her way. The unrealistic ideal was always slightly out of reach for nineteenth-century moms, no matter how great they were.

While social expectations and women’s freedoms have evolved, the description of nineteenth-century moms also remains familiar. Many Victorians believed that motherhood was a (married) woman’s highest possible achievement and only path to true fulfillment. Motherhood was a social responsibility and a full time job that excluded women from paid work.

Despite social upheavals and arduous challenges, the instincts of mothers to protect and nurture their young have remained a constant throughout history. Here below is a set of lovely photos that shows portraits of Victorian mothers with their children from between the 1840s and 1860s.


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