Who is Miss Abigail?

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

Find me on…

Get the feed


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!


Miss Abigail News

Affirming a Fact (1891)

March 1st, 2017

Some advice from Richard A. Wells, Manners, Culture and Dress, 1891, on affirming facts. 

Book Inventory Row 4: Caring for Your Hair and Eyes (and other parts)

April 12th, 2015

This entry in the “what’s on my bookshelf” includes more health and fitness books, including some related to caring for your hair and eyes, a few Red Cross guidebooks, and a Christian fitness book. And for some reason the Sears Discovery Charm school binder sits on this shelf. I think it belongs elsewhere, but I…  >>Read the Rest…

Sears Charm School Binder Available!

April 7th, 2015

A message to all of the Sears Charm School attendees desperate to find a copy of the binder: Anne wrote to say that her school is doing a fundraiser for their library and auctioning off a Sears Charm School binder on eBay. “This was donated by one of our patrons, and the money raised from…  >>Read the Rest…

Book Inventory Row Three: This Time, Horizontal!

March 29th, 2015

A skinny third row down on my first bookcase demands that I stack them horizontally. The books this week are mostly health and some sex-related titles, including a book on stammering, one printed in Norwegian (from our last-summer adventures to BookTown), and a possibly self-published book from 1947, printed in Baltimore and signed by the…  >>Read the Rest…

Book Inventory: Shelf 1, Row 2, in which I discover I file badly

March 22nd, 2015

I’m only on shelf one, row two, and I realize that I have sex books for kids mixed in with physical education textbooks, and other health books. Woops. I guess I should reorganize as I go, but eh, that’s not within scope of the project. 🙂 I also (re)discovered that I have a book from 1782 in…  >>Read the Rest…

2015 Inventory of Collections: Shelf 1, Row 1: Health

March 8th, 2015

Over the years I’ve done a so-so job of tracking which books are in my collection, from a long-ago database on my old Mac, to my website bibliography, and an ultimate move to Librarything.com which has been great and so much easier, but I’ve never managed to get all of my titles loaded. So for…  >>Read the Rest…

Happy 2013!

January 1st, 2013

Happy New Year everyone! I’ve been bringing in the New Year by cleaning up my office, straightening my bookshelves and weeding out some duplicate copies of books. I plan to do some giveaways over the next few months to pass the extra copies along to others who might enjoy. Stay tuned here and on my…  >>Read the Rest…

Recent Acquisitions

November 26th, 2012

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…  >>Read the Rest…

Takoma Park (MD) Authors’ Book Sale

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: ~~~~ 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…  >>Read the Rest…

Apparently I’ve Been Channeling My Grandmother All These Years

September 4th, 2012

A few months ago, my mother uncovered a college paper that my Grandmother Bailey (her mother) had written when she was at Oberlin College. She saw that the topic was right up my alley, so sent it along to me. The paper is titled “Building Healthy Sex Knowledge” and was written for a child development…  >>Read the Rest…