Pvt. Marguerite M. Chase, Women’s Army Corps
World War II was the first time women were officially mobilized across all the armed forces. The Women’s Army Corps sent a recruiter to Yonkers, and the Hudson River Museum arranged for Francis Vandeveer Kughler to create a portrait of every volunteer.
During the first part of the war, Marguerite Chase worked at GM Eastern Aircraft in Tarrytown. After her brothers joined the armed forces, she “wasn’t content to be safe at home working in an aircraft plant.” She enlisted and became known as “a girl with a star-spangled heart.” Civil rights were at a crossroads in the armed forces. Many aspects were still segregated, yet the Army made an effort to recruit African American women and gave them opportunities not offered to civilians.