Who is Miss Abigail?

Abigail Grotke
Silver Spring, MD
email: missabigail at missabigail dot com
twitter: @DearMissAbigail

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About

Miss Abigail has a collection of over 1,000 classic advice books, spanning from 1822 to 1978 and covering a variety of topics, from love and romance to etiquette and charm. The collection sparked the idea for this site, then a book, Miss Abigail's Guide to Dating, Mating, and Marriage, which has inspired an off-broadway production of the same name!

Archives

Archive for November, 2012

Recent Acquisitions

Monday, November 26th, 2012

Manual of Health for Women: Illustrated
There have been some recent acquisitions to Miss Abigail’s collection to tell you about.

This summer, while on I paid way too much for a book I couldn’t resist – it is titled: Manual of Health for Women: Plain advice in sickness and health (1906). Just look at this cover! It is “respectfully dedicated to the women of America by the Author.” I’m a sucker for the old health books, particularly aimed at the ladies. The preface describes “female troubles” which are “so frequent especially among the so-called better classes that one rarely finds a healthy woman.” The author hoped to diminish the suffering of these women by imparting wisdomn of diseases and medical advice. I sure hope it worked!

Back in October, I scored big at the annual Library of Congress staff book sale. Among my finds were:

Life Saving & Water Safety (1937) (lots of images of tipping canoes);

A Cooperative Method of Natural Birth Control (1976) with a lovely photo of morning glories on the cover and other flowery images inside;

The Art of Counseling: How to Gain and Give Mental Health (1939);

Booklet for Women Who Wish to Determine Their Own Names After Marriage (1974), published by the Center for a Woman’s Own Name (let me just file that under “so glad times have changed”);

Your Wedding: How to Plan and Enjoy It (1977 ed.);

Working Wardrobe: Affordable Clothes that Work for You! (1982). A little beyond my collecting years through the 1970s, but I guess as we age it can’t hurt to expand into the 1990s! Besides, the big hairdos are priceless.

(I paid only $3 for the lot! Does that make up for my expensive purchase?)

Somewhere along the way I also picked up Home Entertaining: A Complete Guide (I think at an estate sale). Published in 1950, this one should be fun to peruse for holiday party tips!

Housewifery (1919)And most recently, my mom found Housewifery: A Manual and Text Book of Practical Housekeeping, by Lydia Ray Balderston (1919) at a yard sale, and donated it to the cause just last week. It was part of Lippincott’s Home Manuals, a series of books with other topics such as clothing, successfully canning and preserving, home hygiene, household business, laundering, and millinery.

 

 

 

 

 

The book has some wonderful illustrations and photographs, such as this one which would have helped with my recent bathroom renovation. Apologies for the crooked photo, I was in a rush and didn’t get around to fixing it before posting.

Types of Flooring

Mom and I were also enjoying the cleaning supplies and equipment. This one shows an early clothes dryer that clearly didn’t take off.

Metal Clothes Drying Cabinet

She also showed me some fun stuff about vacuum cleaners. That reminds me, I keep trying to teach the dogs to vacuum but they are slow to learn. Maybe I’ll read it out loud to them!

Takoma Park (MD) Authors’ Book Sale

Monday, November 26th, 2012

This Saturday, December 1, 2012, I’ll be signing and selling books at the 4th Annual Takoma Park Authors’ Book Sale. Details are below:

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Come meet Takoma Park authors, who will be selling and signing their books.
There will be a great selection – and books make great holiday gifts!

 4th ANNUAL TAKOMA PARK AUTHORS BOOK SALE

 Saturday, December 1
1:30-3:30 p.m.

Presbyterian Church
Corner of Tulip & Maple Aves. (Enter on Tulip via playground, door on left)

Local authors will be selling and signing books of every ilk and genre.

ALSO happening nearby:

* Alternative Gift Fair
*  Takoma Park Craftwoman’s 31st Annual Holiday Show and Sale

Hope to see you there!

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