by Mary Goljenboom
In 1924, Mary Vail Andress was hired by Chase National Bank to be an assistant cashier, thus becoming the bank’s first female officer. She left the Paris office of Banker’s Trust Company to take the position at Chase. Bankers magazine included the following information about Miss Andress’ new job:
“Miss Andress will be associated with the main office of the bank and will occupy a desk on the officers’ platform together with the other operating officials. It is understood that her duties will be the same as any other official of similar rank. This is a most forward step in the position of women in banking . . .”
A most forward step . . . a woman, hired to a position currently occupied only by men, expected to do the same job as the men.
Andress held her position with Chase for fifteen years, until 1940 when she left to help the war relief efforts in Europe.
In December 2013, Sotheby’s auctioned a Cartier enamel, diamond, and gold compact inscribed to Mary Vail Andress from Bankers Trust Company, Paris. View the Sotheby’s catalog entry.
Copyright 2013 Ferret Research, Inc.