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ARC Review: The Divorce Colony

The Divorce Colony: How Women Revolutionized Marriage and Found Freedom on the American Frontier by April White April White’s The Divorce Colony is set during the Gilded Age, in the America of the late 1800s. It revolves around the lax divorce rules then to be found in South Dakota.  Today, getting divorced is almost easier than getting married. But in the Gilded Age, divorces were not so easy to obtain. Divorce was viewed as a moral concern for the state, and was denounced from the pulpit for threatening the sanctity of marriage. Even President Theodore Roosevelt spoke out against it.  Laws around divorce tended to be most lax on the frontiers of the United States. By the 1880s the territory of Dakota gained the dubious honor of posting the largest rise in divorces in the country. At the turn of the century one city - Sioux Falls, South Dakota - gained a reputation for having the laxest divorce laws of all, and required only a three month residency in order to take advantage of them

Review: The Not-Quite States of America: Dispatches from the Territories and Other Far-Flung Outposts of the USA


The Not-Quite States of America: Dispatches from the Territories and Other Far-Flung Outposts of the USA
by Doug Mack
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

History, geography and travelogue all rolled into one, The Not-Quite States of America is a fun and informative read on the subject of America's territories. Doug Mack travels to each of the five American territories, and gives you a taste of what makes each one unique, and what the territories have in common with each other and with the rest of the US, as he explores the legal and political reality of their their fuzzy quasi-colony status.