Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » She Had a Question, 1917 (5)

She Had a Question, 1917 (5)

By: Ardis E. Parshall - May 14, 2012

Catherine Hurst comes to the rescue one more time, with answers to the Girl Queries of 1917 —


“Marjorie” – (1) Send stamped addressed envelope and I will mail you formula for pimples.

(2) It is quite correct to take a small box of candy to the theatre – just enough for two – to be eaten quietly. The empty box is left in the theatre.

(3) Act natural. Be pleasant and friendly with the boys, but do not appear eager for their companionship. Men do not admire boldness in girls or women. cultivate modesty, politeness, cheeriness and tactfulness. Be considerate of others and always speak kindly of your girl friends. Perhaps you are rather young as yet, to receive marked attention from the opposite sex. By and by some splendid boy will discover you, so try and prepare for him.

(4) If you cannot have music, there are many interesting games, as checkers, parcheesi, etc. Most boys enjoy candy making and the conversation with some good story or anecdote apropos to the occasion thrown in. Chatting over a dish of homemade candy and salted peanuts, usually detains a boy over the allotted time.


“L.H.” – to remove iodine stains, wash with alcohol and rinse in clear water. Or, put a warm solution of ammonia in a saucer and place the stained part of the linen in it, and let soak for an hour or more, then while yet wet rub dry bicarbonate of potash into the stain until it disappears.


“Rosie” – The tallow mentioned in the remedy for ingrowing nails was beef tallow.


Please tell me some good shampoo for the hair. – Tilevo

Surgeon’s and Physician’s soap, Hall’s Castile, tincture of “green” soap, or egg, all are very good for the shampoo. Dry the hair in the air and sunshine. Add the juice of half a lemon to the last rinsing water.


“Verna” – to clean your hair brush, take one pint of warm water, one tablespoonful of ammonia and one teaspoonful of sal soda. Place the bristles in this without immersing the back of brush. Rub the bristles back and forth with the hands in the water until the brush is clean. Rinse in clear water, wipe the bristles with a clean towel and hang up by the handle to dry, or dry with bristles down in a draught. Do not lay a brush down on its back when wet, as the glue with which the bristles are fastened becomes soaked and the brush will not last long.


“Julie B.” – Children born in America are American citizens, irrespective of the nationality of the parents.


“Maude” – Wash your white crepe de chine waist in white soap suds, using the hands. Do not rub soap on the waist. Rinse in water containing a little powdered borax and the faintest tinge of blueing. Hang in the shade and press while yet damp. After several washings the waist will not be snowy white so you can color it some shade. Buy a roll of crepe paper the color desired, soak a small piece in the rinse water for a few minutes, remove and immerse the waist, shaking around in this water until you have the desired shade. Or, if you wish a pink tint, a drop or two of red ink in the last water will give the required shade of color.


My family is small, consisting of two, and most cook books and recipes seem to be written for large families. Can you tell me of a book for my needs? – Doris

“Catering for Two” by Janet M. Hill is quite the book for the new bride. Sold at Deseret Sunday School Union book Store, Salt Lake City. Price, $1.35.


What is the origin of Santa Claus and the Christmas stocking? – Margarita

Saint Nicholas, no doubt, was the original of our Santa Claus. He was the Bishop of Myra about 300, and was very popular because of his good deeds, especially his kindness to children whose patron saint he is supposed to have been. An old legend says that he wished to bestow a gift secretly upon an old nobleman who, though poor, did not want anyone to know of his poverty. When the good bishop reached the house, he saw the old gentleman asleep by the fire, so he climbed to the top of the house and dropped his gift down the chimney, thinking it would fall on the hearth. But it happened that the money fell into one of the old gentleman’s stockings, which his daughter had hung up to dry, where it was found and used as a dowry for his oldest daughter who was about to be married, and the story goes that Saint Nicholas never failed to put a gift in the stockings that were hung for him thereafter, whenever a daughter of the house was to marry. The date of the bishop’s death, December 6, is observed in many countries. In other countries the festivities commence on December 6 and continue until December 25. Santa Claus seems to be the name by which the kind spirit of Christmas is generally known among children. The Scandinavian legend relates that the coming of Odin, the winter god, who rode a white house, and was preceded by solves and ravens, was supposed to lead an army of souls who had died during the year. As Christianity triumphed it was only over the unbaptized that he was thought to have power, and his army came to be composed only of the souls of children to whom he became a friend. Eventually he was said to bring the toys and gifts to the children on earth.

“Merry Christmas” is the greeting we hear from the first strike of twelve on Christmas eve, until the last candle has flickered out on Christmas night. We think of “merry” as meaning gay, jolly, mirthful, joyous, etc. When the English first used the old Saxon word “merrie” it simply meant pleasant and agreeable, but we still cling to it in spite of its changed character.



  1. “Julie B.” – Children born in America are American citizens, irrespective of the nationality of the parents.

    Oh my goodness! Catherine Hurst was such a radical! What would the Russell Pearces of the world say?

    Comment by Mark B. — May 14, 2012 @ 9:00 am

  2. “The tallow mentioned in the remedy for ingrowing nails was beef tallow.”


    Comment by David Y. — May 14, 2012 @ 10:53 am

  3. Yes, I have spent many a happy moment beyond the allotted time detained over a bowl of home-made candy and salted peanuts.

    Comment by Grant — May 14, 2012 @ 11:32 am

  4. “Act natural. Be pleasant and friendly” while smuggling contraband candy into the theater.

    “Add the juice of half a lemon to the last rinsing water.” I think I used to use cider vinegar to rinse my hair. Perhaps the difference was for red hair compared to blond. Seems like it was to make the hair shiny by ensuring that the shampoo was all rinsed out when using rather hard water. Another creative rinse to add body was when I used my cousin’s beer. Not a happy man when he came in after a long day of work in the sun.

    Comment by charlene — May 14, 2012 @ 1:58 pm

  5. I used lemon on my hair when I was a teenager. I’m not sure it really made my hair more blond, but I was hopeful. My mother went through a very short period of rinsing her hair with beer until us children talked her out of it because we were afraid our friends would get in the fridge and find the beer. We also worried about her buying beer in the grocery store and smiling at the clerk saying “Oh, this is only for my hair.” Nobody would have believed her.

    Comment by Maurine Ward — May 14, 2012 @ 3:55 pm

  6. My mother once bought a can of beer to kill slugs. She made it through the store without seeing anyone she knew, but as the clerk was ringing her up she was joined in line by an acquaintance, kind of the “class clown” of the ward. He made sure to notice her purchase, with gusto. She was so mortified she went home and hid the beer in her dresser and never got the courage to take it out and use it. It might still be there.

    Comment by lindberg — May 14, 2012 @ 11:00 pm

  7. Also, what’s with leaving the candy box in the theater? Not only should you sneak candy in, but you should litter?

    Comment by lindberg — May 14, 2012 @ 11:01 pm

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