Infants fatally ‘over-fed, over-clothed’ in 1844?

“So overeager were mothers toward their sick children that in 1844 the Raleigh Star complained that the results were counterproductive. Maternal fussiness was a reason why, the editor asserted, one-fifth of North Carolina infants died before reaching a year of age. They are ‘over-fed, over-clothed, take too little exercise in the air.’

“Swaddling was not common, so far as we know, but obviously the mothers of whom the writer spoke were killing their young with kindness and restricting their movements in some way.”

– From “Southern Honor: Ethics and Behavior in the Old South” by Bertram Wyatt-Brown (2007)

 

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