Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Gerrie Schipske on Rosie the Riveter

I am straying far away from my usual topics with today's blog. This is because I was invited to a luncheon today at the Petroleum Club in Long Beach. Gerrie Schipske, who happens to be my district's city council person, spoke about the role of Rosie the Riveter in Long Beach. Long Beach has a long aviation history. Amelia Earhart even took lessons here in Long Beach. But, the Rosie Riveters (and they number in the millions in America) played a huge role in Long Beach defense plants during World War II. The term Rosie the Riveter was actually coined by the song of the same name recorded by the Vagabonds in 1943. These "Rosies" were amazing in that they would work 8-10 hour shifts, sometimes for weeks without days off. They reared children, tended to victory gardens, was under rationing, and still managed to rivet, weld, and put together our war planes that helped our servicemen and the war effort. I can't imagine what that was like; but, when the men came home, most of them lost their jobs. It really was a most interesting couple of hours. Gerrie taught Women Studies at Long Beach State University and has written a book Rosie the Riveter in Long Beach. If you are interested in more on this history, visit OK, back to quilting.


Jan said...

I'm glad you got to go to this. Long Beach is a great and varied city.

creativedawn said...

That is some very interesting info. It was sad, in a way, the women were displaced following the war, from the job market.