Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » Ten Rules for a Real Girl, 1941

Ten Rules for a Real Girl, 1941

By: Ardis E. Parshall - June 10, 2009

Okay, so here is what was expected of the sisters of our clean, well-mannered, prayerful boys of 1941:



  1. Seems fairly straightforward. I can’t see why anyone in 2009 would really complain about this…

    (I don’t read #8 as an appearance thing.)

    Comment by queuno — June 10, 2009 @ 2:29 pm

  2. I agree that #8 is less about appearance than about character and courtesy. If there’s a difference between the two lists, I think it’s a vague feeling that boys were out in the world (whatever a boy’s world was), while the girls’ rules feel more domestic, somehow. Not entirely, not strongly, just vaguely.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — June 10, 2009 @ 2:53 pm

  3. i think these are pretty sweet, myself.

    but … artisticness? is that a word? maybe artistry?

    Comment by ellen — June 10, 2009 @ 3:20 pm

  4. I was interested to see that 3 items on the boys’ list (#3, 4, 8 ) are boy-specific even now, while none of the items on the girls’ list are really girl-specific. (Depending on how you interpret “lovely” in #8, I suppose.)

    Comment by Tamary — June 10, 2009 @ 3:43 pm

  5. Silly icons. That smiley face is supposed to be a numeral 8 with a closing parenthesis afterward.

    [Fixed — but I’m so tickled to see that I’m not the only one to be tripped up by them that I’m leaving this, unless you say you’d rather I deleted it. :) — AEP]

    Comment by Tamary — June 10, 2009 @ 3:43 pm

  6. I hadn’t noticed that, Tamary. You’re right, as long as nobody thinks that picking up clothes equals housework equals girl-specific. (Grrr–they’d better not!)

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — June 10, 2009 @ 4:05 pm

  7. My 13 year-old will really like the keeping your room neat and clean bit.

    Comment by Steve C. — June 11, 2009 @ 8:52 am

  8. I’ll print this one out for my girls. Nothing objectionable here!

    (Of course this was before the end of World War II and the oppression of women due to the demand to get them out of the workforce to make room for all the returning veterans.)

    Comment by Researcher — June 11, 2009 @ 9:03 am

  9. I read these to my kids last night. I can’t see the images at my office, but I don’t recall seeing instruction for the boys to pick up their clothes. In my house, the boys’ rooms are messy with toys and some clothes; my daughter’s room is messy too but just with her clothes.

    I wear hats. And my kids (lovingly) make fun of me for it. I think they have rhyme they say when they see a man wearing a hat (baseball caps excepted).

    Comment by Bruce Crow — June 11, 2009 @ 9:22 am

  10. My favorite on both lists are the pen-and-ink illustrations.

    Comment by Clark — June 11, 2009 @ 10:00 am

  11. I actually really love these. Who woulda thought?

    Comment by BYU Women's Services — June 11, 2009 @ 10:04 am

  12. Who woulda thought?

    That pretty much sums up why history fascinates me so — I seem to be constantly surprised, and that surprise doesn’t depend on whether the past is very like the present, or very unlike. In either case, who woulda thought?

    Comment by Ardis Parshall — June 11, 2009 @ 10:06 am

  13. Yes, I would frame this and hang it in my house- it’s charming. But then, I already have old ads and whatnot framed… as well as photos I pick up at tag-sales of people who I will never know. I just love them. 😉

    Comment by Tracy M — June 11, 2009 @ 6:24 pm

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