Who are these ladies?
Chances are, one could be your mom, grandma, aunt, great aunt or, in case you’re an old relic like me, a sister.
This photo was unearthed from a box of old photos here at The Reporter. We have many of those boxes stacked under one of our tables. It’s interesting to visit those boxes from time to time.
My guess is this is a group of Alcoa secretaries in the early 1950s, as the local smelter poured its first metal in 1952. The photo was obviously taken on the front steps of Building 80 (the administration building), or, as the rank-and-file Alcoans liked to call it, the Ivory Tower.
It’s also my guess that the photographer was Jack Nettles, the first editor of The Alcoa Ranger, a monthly employee magazine which existed, I believe, into the 1960s and possibly 1970s.
Chances are it was taken during National Secretaries Week. This was decades before the dawn of political correctness when the term “secretary” was determined to be demeaning, and the business world was introduced to “administrative assistants.” I always wondered why “assistant” wasn’t privately considered demeaning, since these women generally did all the work piled on them from various directions by the thinkers in that great Think Tank that was Building 80.
Anyway, if some Reporter reader out there can identify these women, you will be entitled to a free one-year subscription to this weekly rag (either the print edition on online edition, your call). And if you’re already a subscriber (bless you), your subscription will automatically be renewed for an additional year.