In serving tea, the table should be arranged before any visitors arrive. Its cover may be a linen tea cloth embroidered or trimmed with lace, while the cups and saucers, with the spoon resting in each saucer, the thin slices of lemon, the small wafers, cakes or sandwiches on plates or pretty doilies, should be artistically arranged upon it. The teakettle should be in its place, the teapot just in front of it. The cream pitcher and sugar bowl should be within convenient reach. If the hostess pours the tea, she allows the guest to put in the sugar and cream for themselves. If she expects many visitors, then there will be wisdom in asking a friend to pour the tea for her.
~ Ladies Home Journal, 1897