Who Are These Women?

This historical photograph, “Women of the Waldorf Astoria”, was obtained by Annie Mac Financial LLC from the National Archives and Records Administration courtesy of the U.S. War Department. This December 11, 1918 photograph illustrates the Waldorf-Astoria’s revolutionary practice during World War I of employing women in traditionally male occupations. The hotel was the very first to employ women during the War to operate tickers and stock exchange boards in the absence of men who had gone off to war. This was a source of controversy at the time, given that many were concerned about the “girls’” ability to perform basic math skills successfully and to properly coordinate the appropriate stock price with the respective stock ticker symbol.

The Waldorf Astoria, then a facility for transients, is historically significant for transforming itself into a social center of the city as well as a prestigious destination for visitors and a part of popular culture. Notably, the Waldorf-Astoria was influential in advancing the status of women, who (contrary to the norms of the day) were allowed to be admitted singly into the hotel without escorts. Founding proprietor George C. Boldt’s wife, Louise Kehrer-Boldt, was influential in evolving the idea of the grand urban hotel as a social center, particularly in making it appealing to women as a venue for social events.

Annie Mac Financial applauds the ground-breaking efforts of the Waldorf-Astoria, and proudly claims its own status as a woman-owned business in Macomb County, Michigan. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with men and women in our community and elsewhere, helping them to thrive and enrich the lives of others.