In the course of my research, I came across this lovely guide to silk through the Google Book Search. Silk by Eliza B. Thompson, copyright 1918 and 1922 by the Ronald Press Company, is a manual primarily intended for department store salespeople. This is back when they sold fabric in department stores — anyone remember that? It is a nice guide to silk history, silk terminology, and textile merchandising that is still mostly relevant today. The full text of the book is viewable for free online, or you can download a .pdf.