How Times have Changed


Found this picture of my mother’s Class of 1951 Rutgers Law School Graduation Class Picture. E. Gioia Cipriano from Orange New Jersey was the only women in her graduating class. She was treated with the utmost respect to the point when a Professor said the word “damn” in class, he apologized to Miss Cipriano for his language. She tells about how when she was in the library and had to reach up to get a book, the men would all jump up to help her.

Many years later in the same library she was doing research and had trouble reaching the book on the top shelf, and she had to get a chair was precariously balanced on one foot to reach a book and no one came to help at all. She laughed to herself thinking how much difference a few years make. When she graduated law school she wanted to get into corporate law but no law firm would hire her. She finally was able to find a firm to work for but when asked if she could type she was smart enough to feign a lack of typing skills, she knew if the partners thought she could type she would be no more than a glorified secretary.

She was first assigned to collection cases for “Kirby Vacuum Cleaners” which were sold door to door and were very expensive. The salesmen talked the people into buying these multi tasking monster machines on credit and even though the payments were 10 dollars a month many people fell behind on their payments and then the lawyers were called in to repossess the machines which were then reconditioned and sold as new to other customers. Thinking that this was not the reason she went to law school she quit that firm and began focusing on wills and estate and real estate.

A few years later she married my father, Samuel L. Marciano, a fellow law school graduate who was now living and practicing law in Hoboken. She then had three children who all become lawyerettes. As proud as she was of all of us we now are proud of her, she still is doing and planning all sorts of things and keeping her mind as young and even more active than a lot of the kids in school these days.

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