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.
It is not etiquette for a young lady to visit a place of public amusement with a gentleman, alone, with whom she is but slightly acquainted. Her escort should the first time invite another member of the family to accompany her.
The gentleman should make a point of extending his invitation to the lady long enough before the entertainment to be able to secure desirable seats. Most of the pleasure of the occasion will depend upon being so seated as to be able to witness the performance to advantage.
Should the weather be stormy, and for other reasons, it will be a very graceful way of complimenting the lady to provide a carriage for the occasion.
Seats having been secured, it is not necessary to arrive until about five minutes before the commencement of the performance. It is bad manners to go late to a public entertainment; the bustle and noise incident to the late arrival is often a serious interference with the exercises of the occasion.
Upon entering the hall, secure a programme for each member of your party, and follow the usher to the designated seats. The gentleman will go first, and pause at the entrance, allowing the lady to pass into the seat, when he will follow.