I have found a book you must read if you have not already done so. It is called Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation by Lynne Truss. She gives the history of the common punctuation marks along with rules for their correct usage and examples of abuses she has seen. She goes on a tirade about the movie Two Weeks Notice, which should be Two Weeks' Notice. Among other things, I learned that the Aldus Manutius used the first printed semicolon in 1494. She writes very well, with a British sense of humor that I think you would appreciate. Since Lynne Truss is British, she focusses on British usage more than American usage, but points out where differences occur.
You are a grammar and usage stickler and must read this book!