This section is from the book "The Steward's Handbook And Guide To Party Catering", by Jessup Whitehead. Also available from Amazon: Larousse Gastronomique.
The recipe for getting along amicably with the proprietor's wife has hitherto been kept a profound secret; it is now divulged and is alone worth the price of this book. It is this: Make yourself thoroughly master of your business before venturing where the landlady is one of the ruling spirits, after that go in confidently and be patient.
Proprietor's wives are always prejudiced in advance against the steward before he comes. They fear that their husband's importance is about to be lessened by somebody usurping his authority; the housekeeping instinct in them makes them apprehensive that their own prerogatives also are to be interfered with. They believe in advance that the steward is but a fraud and a pretender, and if they can prove him so he must either leave or lead a dog's life, and not a pet dog's either. But women generally worship efficiency. Let the new steward show skill and knowledge superior to her own, let him stand between the tricky traders and herself and husband, and buy better and cheaper, bring the help into a state of discipline, have the meals on time and served promptly, and secure for their house more praise for less outlay than before, and the recalcitrant landlady is soon subjugated and becomes of the opinion that a steward is the most Indispensable adjunct to the hotel business and she couldn't keep house without one.