In the staff room where I work we have a copy of Admiral Rawson’s Maxims. I don’t really know why we have it or where it came from, but here’s what it says…
Admiral Rawson’s Maxims
Extract from Sir Harry Rawson’s speech at the Opening of the New All Saints’ School, Halifax, August 23rd, 1909.
To the Boys
1. Never SAY anything you would not like your mother or sisters to hear.
2. Never DO anything you would not like your mother or sisters to hear of.
3. Never keep company you would not like to see associated with your mother and sisters.
4. I want you all to become gentlemen and the greatest sign of a gentleman is the way he treats a woman.
To the Girls
1. I want to impress upon you the fact that the future of the country depends upon you a good deal.
2. Make your homes comfortable for the boys and their friends, and make them happy.
3. Make boys respect you. There is no greater sign of Christian civilisation than the way men respect women.
Remember that for all things worth having we have to fight hard.
It shows what was considered to be important in 1909. I find it particularly interesting that Admiral Rawson encourages the girls in themselves by saying their ‘country depends upon [them].’ I think there are a few things we can learn from it, especially the boys!
Most curious of all is that if you look on the other side of the maxims, you find it has been stuck onto an old advert for Craven ‘A’ cigarettes. There is a picture of a woman with a cigarette and it encourages women not to deny themselves the pleasure of Craven ‘A’ cigarettes. It even says, ‘Made specially to prevent sore throats!’ Made me chuckle.