See ads for menarche-education booklets: Marjorie May's Twelfth Birthday (Kotex, 1933), Tampax tampons (1970, with Susan Dey), Personal Products (1955, with Carol Lynley), and German o.b. tampons (lower ad, 1970s)
See also the booklets How shall I tell my daughter? (Modess, various dates), Growing up and liking it (Modess, various dates), and Marjorie May's Twelfth Birthday (Kotex, 1928).
And read Lynn Peril's series about these and similar booklets!
See more Kotex items: First ad (1921) - ad 1928 (Sears and Roebuck catalog) - Lee Miller ads (first real person in amenstrual hygiene ad, 1928) - Marjorie May's Twelfth Birthday (booklet for girls, 1928, Australian edition; there are many links here to Kotex items) - Preparing for Womanhood (1920s, booklet for girls; Australian edition) - 1920s booklet in Spanish showing disposal method - box from about 1969 - "Are you in the know?" ads (Kotex) (1949)(1953)(1964)(booklet, 1956) - See more ads on the Ads for Teenagers main page
CONTRIBUTE to Humor,
Words and expressions about
menstruation and Would
you stop menstruating if you could?
MUM received this testimonial last week (see previous comments):
"I've used my Keeper for about a year
now and I'm very pleased with it. I find it
comfortable, convenient, and it saves me a lot of
money! It's especially great for traveling--I took mine to the Sudan with me, where I
was living in a rural village with no plumbing or
conveniences like drugstores. I wore it on a 10-hour
drive across the desert where it would have been
impossible to stop or find a place to change a tampon
or pad, and it saved me from having to carry around
several months worth of menstrual products wherever I
traveled. I love it!"
"When I was a counselor at summer camp there was a joke about t-girls and p-girls...tampon girls and pad girls. I even made a little newsletter after camp and sent it to a friend or two. It was called "t-topics." It was kind of stupid and kind of funny. I like your Web site".
Lisa says if she finds the
newsletter, she might let us read it!
There are a few articles on the
Internet discussing the appeal of menstrual odor to
animals, including the human kind, and related topics,
site is pretty good, and will dispel some myths.
A good summary of the
dangers of tampons and a California initiative
is given here; the latter includes forcing
manufacturers to list the contents of menstrual
hygiene products on packages (especially dioxin).
I just received this note from Sally Tonge (email@example.com):
"I am new to the Internet but would like to use the vast array of material there to further my quest for traditional stories which explore menstruation.
"It may be that they are allegories for the cyclical bleeding, contain cyclical rhythms in their plots or are metaphors for the waxing and waning which is experienced by menstruating women.
"Can you refer me to good sites?
"I'm sorry this isn't exactly news - but maybe to some people it is and I would love to receive feedback and some guidance in my brave new adventure!"
Can anyone help
her? What a
MUM to Speak at the Conference of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research
Harry Finley - that's me - will give a talk entitled "The Museum of Menstruation at a Turning Point" at the biannual meeting of SMCR at the University of Illinois at Chicago in early June this year. I'll give exact dates and times when they are available.
This year's conference is associated with the Center for Women and Gender at the university.
These conferences typically serve as delivery places for technical papers related to menstruation, and as a meeting place for folks from around the world interested in the scientific and cultural aspects of menstruation.
The turning point referred to above is the time, right now, that the museum is ready to expand and become completely public. Wish your MUM luck!
MUM will also visit GirlCon '97 at Wellesley College (Massachusetts, U.S.A.) in the guise of Miki Walsh. If the GirlCon powers approve it, Miki will give a talk about
this museum, and show the
Canadian television film Under
Wraps, which I never seem to stop talking about
- with reason: it's the best ever made about
I think I should mention one of the most bizarre happenings here at MUM.
About two years ago, on 15 April 1995, the Washington Post newspaper printed a lengthy article about this museum. But the story had been delayed about a week - the Post even had to quickly pull its radio ad about MUM for the publication day - because of an editor's insisting that the paper do a background investigation on yours truly, the founder and director of MUM. Apparently more than one person on the staff was upset with the museum (and a staff member actually lodged a complaint), and it was a male editor who held the story up (I believe a female editor suggested the story; a woman reporter wrote it). The paper apparently feared that after the favorable story appeared, a reader would call or write, wondering why the paper didn't know that Harry Finley was - well, you fill in the blank.
After days of calls from a staff member requesting information about my security clearance ("secret") at my Department of Defense job (the story cryptically mentions this), and my (non-existent) police record, and after the police had declared that I was "clean," the story appeared on a Saturday morning.
Actually, someone at Mademoiselle magazine told a Post reporter (Kara Swisher) about the existence of MUM, and that reporter called me to ask to attend the opening of MUM, on 31 July 1994 (a reporter from Seventeen magazine was there, too), which I, of course, agreed to. Before leaving, she said that a Post photographer would visit the next week, but none did and a story never appeared. I suspect that an editor - male? - killed the idea.
One of my fears before and after starting MUM was that I was doing something wrong, that a museum of menstruation was somehow illegal, and I don't mean the business aspect; I have scrupulously observed the rules. I mean that maybe menstruation was illegal - now, isn't that silly? Two close male acquaintances both warned me that the police would raid MUM, and I was vaguely worried about the same thing.
The problem is that no one should be interested in menstruation, in most people's view, and certainly not a man - oh, well, maybe a doctor, because menstruation is after all something quasi-pathological; that's the gut feeling of an enormous number of people.
Menstruation is actually un-American, because it happens in an unmentionable party of the body and it's messy and only women do it; I'm surprised Congress has not yet investigated it, since it's investigating everything else.
This story has repeated itself in other ways in the past three years. That means the world needs a MUM to set it straight, and soon.
See Tampax tampons (1970, with
Susan Dey), Personal Products
(1955, with Carol Lynley), and
Below: the Post story's writer wrote me the following on 1 May 1995:
We have had very little negative response to the article about MUM. One person called the Ombudsman to complain, and two people inside the paper complained to my boss. A number of other readers called to get your phone number in order to visit or send you something. I've had one peculiar letter [second letter on page], which I enclose. My view is that the editors' horror did not reflect the views of the public at large!