My thesis is focused on the five women who served as wives to the governors of Northern Ireland between 1922 and 1972 as one hundred years after the establishment of Northern Ireland, these women remain absent from the historical narrative. By virtue of their elevated position as governor's wife, however, several of these women made significant contributions to the public life of Northern Ireland and these contributions must be recognised. The public roles of these five women will thus form the core of my thesis.
Significantly, these five women did not have an official role during their time as wife of the governor as their husband was the official appointee. These women thus acted in an unofficial capacity to represent the British monarch alongside their husband. The aim of my research is to examine who these women were, what their role as wife of the governor involved and how they represented the monarch through their unofficial position. Looking at areas such as their role in ceremonial occasions associated with the governorship, their philanthropic work and their involvement in Government House, the role of these women will be examined. How, or if, their experience as wife of the governor changed throughout the fifty-year period under study will also be considered.