Gross Misbehavior and Wickedness: A Notorious Divorce in Early Twentieth-Century America

by Jean Elson

A bitter and public court battle created a sensation…

Gross Misbehavior and Wickedness

Gross Misbehavior and Wickedness: A Notorious Divorce in Early Twentieth-Century America

by Jean Elson

The shocking charges: Gross Misbehavior and Wickedness
Gross Misbehavior and Wickedness

Gross Misbehavior and Wickedness:

A Notorious Divorce in Early Twentieth-Century America

This fascinating story of the troubled marriage and acrimonious divorce of Nina and James Walker elucidates early twentieth-century gender and family mores

The Book

The bitter and public court battle waged between Nina and James Walker of Newport, RI from 1909 to 1916 created a sensation throughout the nation with lurid accounts of—and gossip about—their marital troubles. Gross Misbehavior and Wickedness—the charges Nina levied at James for his adultery (with the family governess) and extreme cruelty—recounts the protracted legal proceedings in juicy detail.

Learn more about the ordeal of this high-society couple, one of the prime examples of the growing trend of women seeking divorce during the early twentieth century. >>

About the Author

Jean Elson is Senior Lecturer Emerita in the Department of Sociology at the University of New Hampshire.  Learn more>>