She was a cultural icon, this woman called Rosie the Riveter, and she represented tens of thousands of women who worked in factories and shipyards during World War II, stepping in to fill the jobs vacated by men in the military or working alongside men who served their country in a different way.
After Pearl Harbor pulled the United States into the global war, attitudes changed more from necessity than social conscience. Women traditionally were expected to stay home and raise a family. Blacks found it difficult to find high-paying industrial jobs. Now to meet military and civilian demands, both groups found themselves working, often side-by-side.