Status of abandoned or divorced wife #usa

Sam Lorber

I believe I have found my 74 year old 2xg grandfather and his 68 year old second wife living separately with different married daughters in NYC in the 1900 federal census.  His status is married, while hers is widowed.  I have read several articles on desertion and divorce within the immigrant population but nothing mentions the abandoned or divorced wife claiming to be a widow.  Anyone know was the cultural rules or Halacha would have to say concerning  this?

Sam Lorber

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