The current dust-up between Trump and Cruz regarding their wives is nothing new, though the press tries hard to make it seem that way. Political wives have always been an issue, in some form. Betty Ford is known for her eponymous rehab centers, while Jimmy Carter was famous for the lust in his heart (which surely hurt Rosalyn's feelings). Nancy Reagan held seances in the White House, and was known to consult astrologers. I don't really have to repeat any stories about Hillary - there are more than enough out there to keep me busy typing all day.
But political wives and their treatment have a much lengthier history, too. Edith Wilson is often recognized as the 'first woman president' for the role she played while Wilson convalesced after his stroke. Eleanor Roosevelt was a fiery personality in her own right. Dolley Madison, of course, is remembered for saving Washington's portrait in the War of 1812, but she was also the first to decorate the White House. Few know she lived in poverty after the death of her husband.
Even further back, we have Mary Todd Lincoln, whose story is often overlooked. It's a strong likelihood she was manic depressive. But even in the 1800's she was aware of the spotlight put upon the wife of a president. She lived an unfortunate and desperate life not long after Lincoln's assassination.