I have listened to a lot of controversy about the modern usage of 小姐 and similar terms. Here I just want to know whether what I thought as a child reflected the usage prior to the cultural revolution. The suspicion that it may be so is based on (my inferior understanding of) 崑曲 and on movie adaptations of 金庸。 in particular, my incomplete recollection suggests that the maidservant in 崑曲 frequently called the noble miss 小姐， while the miss never used the term for the maidservant.
What I thought was: 姑娘 is the normal term and a girl might even use it talking about herself to people of equal status. 小姐 is the young miss from a noted family. 美女 is absolutely not a standard address and indicates intimate interest when used as one.
In case this does not reflect the usage prior to the cultural revolution, but merely its portrayal in later works - like 射雕英雄傳 - I am very interested in evidence.