Pioneer women wore bonnets as a practical means of protection from the sun and wind while playing outdoors or working on the frontier. It was custom for women and young girls to wear bonnets.
Laura often resented wearing a bonnet when she was younger, but Ma was very set on ensuring her daughters were raised as proper young ladies, as bonnets also served as a symbol of modesty and with a proper upbringing.
Bonnets were a common part of a pioneer woman’s wardrobe and were often made from sturdy materials such as cotton or straw to withstand the harsh outdoor conditions. Laura and her sisters wore cotton bonnets but when she was a young lady, she purchased a fashionable poke bonnet made of straw.