Once again the, shall we say, idiosyncracies of my family’s experience have been powerfully impressed on me. In the comments to this post of James Joyner’s I wondered about the age at which women married and had children in the past, citing my own family’s history.
Here are the ages at which the last three generations of women in my direct family line had their eldest children.
|Relationship||Age of mother at birth of oldest child|
|Paternal grandfather’s mother||?|
|Paternal grandmother’s mother||27|
|Maternal grandfather’s mother||19|
|Maternal grandmother’s mother||21|
This is consistent in that it is, apparently, inconsistent with the common experience. There are no farmers in my family; my family was urban—burghers or bohemians;my family varied in prosperity from quite affluent to desperately poor. And, as you can see from the above, my female ancestors tended to bear their children in their mid to late twenties rather than in their teens.