Etta Bickert Andrews

Honored by:Norman Rudi
Brick location:D:13  map

Etta Bickert was born in rural Bowdle, South Dakota, the daughter of George and Magdalena Bickert on February 1, 1892. Her early years and education were spent in this area. She attended Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska where she received a Bachelors Degree in Music in 1913. She then joined the music faculty at Union and taught in the piano division.

While at Union College, she met and married George Gordon Andrews, a Professor of History in 1929. Andrews graduated from Union College in 1912, obtained a Master of Arts from the University of Nebraska in 1917, and continued his studies at Harvard and Cornell, receiving a Doctor of Philosophy from Cornell in 1921. He taught at Missouri State Teachers College, Kirksville University of South Dakota, Cornell University, and Union College.

After their marriage in 1929, Professor Andrews joined the faculty at the University of Iowa and the couple moved to Iowa City where his specialty was European (Napoleonic) History. His untimely death of a brain tumor March 29, 1938 left Etta Bickert Andrews with four young children, ranging from six months to six years during the height of the depression. Etta immediately entered a new world raising the four youngsters with her limited resources. The family home at 2 Melrose Circle in Iowa City was secure. Faculty and friends were very supportive. Etta raised and educated all four children with her limited resources. Three sons and one daughter excelled in academics and athletics.

Mitchell Andrews won a piano scholarship at Juilliard School of Music at the age of seventeen. In his twenties, he toured the world as an accompanist to Celloist Lennord Rose. He taught at Juilliard, toured as a soloist, and for a decade was a member of the Marlboro String Quartet, touring world wide.

Ann Andrews graduated Cum Laude from the School of Commerce at the University of Iowa, one of the few women studying in business curriculum at that time.

James Andrews graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelors and Masters Degree in Engineering Mechanics from the University of Iowa. James did additional work on a doctoral thesis at the University of Minnesota. James and brother Arthur were excellent tennis players, and James played on the University of Iowa Tennis team, winning a Big Ten Team title.

Arthur Andrews graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Iowa. A runner-up for a Rhodes Scholarship, he received a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship to the School of Law at Long Island University. Arthur is currently on the law faculty at the University of Arizona Tucson, Arizona. As a standout tennis player, Arthur was Big Ten tennis champion as a sophomore and runner-up his junior and senior years. He was selected as one of six members of the National Junior Davis Cup squad and traveled on the tennis circuit for several summers, competing against the top professional players in the country.

After her children had entered college, Etta Andrews was employed for many years as a laboratory technician for the Zoology Department at the University of Iowa, and subsequently in the Pathology Laboratory at Mercy Hospital Iowa City.

Etta Bickert Andrews died at Oaknoll Retirement Residence Iowa City on Tuesday April 7, 1987 at the age of ninety-five years. Etta Andrews musical training involved tremendous discipline, control, and determination. All of these qualities were exercised in the rearing of her children, encouraging their personal and academic growth. Their ultimate successes were a tribute to her proper preparations, her extraordinary personal strength, and quiet expectations, as one might anticipate from a disciplined piano background. Living under circumstances where participation in community activities was not possible, Etta's quiet resolve focus on her family, love, direction, and courage by example makes her a unique and wonderful addition to the Plaza of Heroines.