Andrews was born in Virginia. He graduated with a Bachelors degree from the Beloit College in Wisconsin, and got his Masters degree at the Colombia University.After graduation, he worked in the American Museum of Natural History in New York as a taxidermist. He had strong organizational skills things and was experienced field worker as well. When he accepted the position to organize the expedition to search for the origin of ancestral hominids in Central Asia, he made a note: “I returned to New York early in 1920 with the basic plans of the expedition clearly in mind. The main problem was to be a study of geological history of central Asia; to find whether it had been the nursery of many of the dominant groups of animals, including the human race; and to reconstruct its past climate, vegetation and general physical condition , particularly in relation to the evolution of man.” In order to work efficiently, Andrews made a bold plan of combined using camels and automobiles to get into the Gobi Desert and gain results he desired. This plan also became a pioneering effort to utilize vehicles with powered engines for exploration performed deeply within the Gobi Desert.