This is a well-edited collection of the written record (published in the 19th C., letters, diaries) left by women who left the UK to settle mostly in the Empire. The excerpts are usually only a few paragraphs long, at most. I especially enjoyed reading on the bus today Chapter Three, First Impressions.
Regarding NYC (1848), "...it is the greatest den of iniquity in existence, believe nothing else."
Index of women quoted, citations of the sources. There are some comments interspersed by the editor.