See ads for menarche-education booklets: Marjorie May's Twelfth Birthday (Kotex, 1932), Tampax tampons (1970, with Susan Dey), Personal Products (1955, with Carol Lynley), and German o.b. tampons (lower ad, 1981)
See also the booklets How shall I tell my daughter? (Modess, various dates), and Growing up and liking it (Modess, various dates)
And read Lynn Peril's series about these and similar booklets!
CONTRIBUTE to Humor, Words and expressions about menstruation and Would you stop menstruating if you could?
Some MUM site links:
MUM address & What does MUM mean? |
Email the museum |
Privacy on this site |
Who runs this museum?? |
Amazing women! |
Art of menstruation |
Artists (non-menstrual) |
Asbestos |
Belts |
Bidets |
Founder bio |
Bly, Nellie |
MUM board |
Books: menstruation and menopause (and reviews) |
Cats |
Company booklets for girls (mostly) directory |
Contraception and religion |
Costumes |
Menstrual cups |
Cup usage |
Dispensers |
Douches, pain, sprays |
Essay directory |
Extraction |
Facts-of-life booklets for girls |
Famous women in menstrual hygiene ads |
Founder/director biography |
Gynecological topics by Dr. Soucasaux |
Humor |
Huts |
Links |
Masturbation |
Media coverage of MUM |
Menarche booklets for girls and parents |
Miscellaneous |
Museum future |
Norwegian menstruation exhibit |
Odor |
Olor |
Pad directory |
Patent medicine |
Poetry directory |
Products, some current |
Puberty booklets for girls and parents|
Religion |
Religión y menstruación |
Your remedies for menstrual discomfort |
Menstrual products safety |
Seguridad de productos para la menstruación |
Science |
Shame |
Slapping, menstrual |
Sponges |
Synchrony |
Tampon directory |
Early tampons |
Teen ads directory |
Tour of the former museum (video) |
Underpants & panties directory |
Videos, films directory |
Words and expressions about menstruation |
Would you stop menstruating if you could? |
What did women do about menstruation in the past? |
Washable pads |
Read 10 years (1996-2006) of articles and Letters to Your MUM on this site.
Leer la versión en español de los siguientes temas: Anticoncepción y religión, Breve reseña - Olor - Religión y menstruación - Seguridad de productos para la menstruación.

Kotex teaches and wins girls:
Marjorie May's Twelfth Birthday, 1929,
puberty & menstruation booklet for Kotex sanitary napkins

In America, mothers essentially stopped teaching their daughters about menstruation in the early part of the 19th century. Victorianism made knowledge of the body shameful, especially among women, and the informal passing of knowledge from older girls to younger ones was inhibited by changes in the school system. Physicians and moralists took over by default. (This topic is treated wonderfully in "'Something Happens to Girls': Menarche and the Emergence of the Modern American Hygienic Imperative" by Joan Jacobs Brumberg of Cornell University in the Journal of the History of Sexuality, 1993, vol. 4, no. 1., and by Lynn Peril on this MUM Web site. Prof. Brumberg recently [1997] wrote The Body Project, a history of cultural attitudes toward the girl's body in America - read it!)

Lynn Peril discusses many of these teachers, and especially the menstrual industry's seizing the initiative in menarche education, which is the situation today..
By the kind permission of the Curator of Health and Medicine at the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney, Australia, I am able to show you part of an Australian edition of Marjorie May's Twelfth Birthday (which Peril mentions) from 1928 in the collection of the Powerhouse Museum. (Please direct any further enquiries to Megan Hicks at The Powerhouse will get this museum if I can't find a suitable place for it in the U.S.A.)
This Australian edition is probably identical to the American edition. Read the entire 1935 Canadian edition.
(See an American ad offering this booklet, and see other booklets and ads for them, above.)

START Marjorie May's Twelfth Birthday
(pages 3, 4, 11, 12-13, 14-15)

© 1999 Harry Finley. It is illegal to reproduce or distribute any of the work on this Web site in any manner or medium without written permission of the author. Please report suspected violations to