This section is from the book "Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: A Guide To Correct Writing", by Thos. E. Hill. Also available from Amazon: Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: The How-To-Do-Everything Book Of Victorian America.
Never should a wife display her best conduct, her accomplishments, her smiles, and her best nature, exclusively away from home.
Be careful in your purchases. Let your husband know what you buy, and that you have wisely expended your money.
Let no wife devote a large portion of her time to society-work which shall keep her away from home daytimes and evenings, without the full concurrence of her husband.
Beware of entrusting the confidence of your household to outside parties. The moment you discuss the faults of your husband with another, that moment an element of discord has been admitted which will one day rend your family circle.
If in moderate circumstances, do not be over ambitious to make an expensive display in your rooms. With your own work you can embellish at a cheap price, and yet very handsomely, if you have taste. Let the adornings of your private rooms be largely the work of your own hands.
Beware of bickering about little things. Your husband returns from his labors with his mind absorbed in business. In his dealings with his employes, he is in the habit of giving commands and of being obeyed. In his absent-mindedness, he does not realize, possibly, the change from his business to his home, and the same dictatorial spirit may possess him in the domestic circle. Should such be the case, avoid all disputes. What matters it where a picture hangs, or a flower-vase may sit. Make the home so charming and so wisely-ordered that your husband will gladly be relieved of its care, and will willingly yield up its entire management to yourself.
Be always very careful of your conduct and language. A husband is largely restrained by the chastity, purity and refinement of his wife.
Whatever may have been the cares of the day, greet your husband with a smile when he returns. Make your personal appearance just as beautiful as possible. Your dress may be made of calico, but it should be neat. Let him enter rooms so attractive and sunny that all the recollections of his home, when away from the same, shall attract him back.
Be careful that you do not estimate your husband solely by his ability to make display. The nature of his employment, in comparison with others, may not be favorable for fine show, but that should matter not. The superior qualities of mind and heart alone will bring permanent happiness.
To have a cheerful, pleasant home awaiting the husband, is not all. He may bring a guest whom he desires to favorably impress, and upon you will devolve the duty of entertaining the visitor so agreeably that the husband shall take pride in you. A man does not alone require that his wife be a good housekeeper. She must be more; in conversational talent and general accomplishment she must be a companion.