The role of women before war: Upper-class women did not work before the war and few worked after it. Working-class women, on the other hand, had to work to help keep their families. They worked before the war mostly in factories and in domestic services as maids. As many as 11% of all women worked as domestic servants before the war. The war gave them the chance to work in a greater variety of jobs but most of these new jobs were lost at the end of the war.
They were also doing jobs such as welding, riveting and engine repair. During World War II, over 6 million women took wartime jobs in factories or farms ("Women in World War II”). They were helping meet the wartime production for planes, tanks, ships, and weapons. Without the women working, the United States would not have been able to keep up with the wartime production of weapons. Some women worked so long in the factories that they had to move closer to the factory.
Coming from all walks of life, there were those already working who switched to higher-paying defense jobs, those who had lost their jobs due to the Depression, and then there were the women who worked at home. Rosie the Riveter was the idol for these working women also she was known as the cover girl for the recruiting campaign. By 1944, 16 percent of all working women held jobs in war industries. While an estimated 18 million women worked during the war, there was growing concern among them that when the war was over, it would never be the same again. That new venture for American women would soon come to an end.
With the majority of the men gone that usually worked the factories and welding plants the United States needed to keep producing arms, ammunition, and other various equipment for the troops to continue they efforts. Thus women were encouraged by posters such as these showing that they too could help the country in this time of need. Needless to say, a great deal of women stepped up, were trained, and filled jobs that had, until this time, only been filled by men. Rosie the Riveter has made a mark on the American people and most of all the way in which the American woman is seen. Women were once only seen in homes cleaning and cooking and the era of Rosie was the first step in women’s rights.
Although before the Civil War, women rarely took a part in society, the war significantly changed women’s roles in many ways. Before the Civil War, women typically worked in and around their homes. The typical housewife would cook, clean and raise many children while the men worked. Many people typically did not promote women to branch out outside their homes, particularly stated by historian, Linda Miles Coppens that “Horace Man, president of Ohio’s new interracial and coeducational college publishes ‘A Few Thoughts on the Power and Duties of Women’ in New York. He warns women against vocations of preaching or politics, explaining that they can influence public opinion in their homes and communities.” They were strictly housewives and were destined to raise children.
The women went from running the house to running the factory. Men went from running the factory to running the army and fighting. French Field Marshal Joffre emphasizes, “If the women in the factories stopped work for twenty minutes, the Allies would lose the war.” I believe that the women were the main driving force behind the war and helped the United States win with the Allies. Without them, I believe, the men fighting would not have had much power to continue to fight since the women provided them with necessities to win. The women of the early 20th century helped by filling in the jobs that men used, volunteering as nurses, and giving hope to the soldiers to fight back with.
Some women “felt they were needed at home to raise families, crops for food and to fill the jobs that the men had vacated in order to serve their country.”(Suite101) Women’s lives on the home front during World War II were a significant part of the war effort for all participants and had a major impact on the outcome of the war. Once the men went off to war and left their jobs, the women that were single had a great advantage because job opportunities were everywhere. In the other hand married women had a tough time, especially if they had children. Hundreds of women worked in machine shops, welding shops, manufacturing plants, and also worked in war industries to make equipment for the war. New industries, naval, and army bases were being built during the home front.
Women during WWII 1950s/60s Factory Work: Many women decided that they would work in a factory. They worked in all manner of production ranging from making ammunition to uniforms to aeroplanes. The hours they worked were long and some women had to move to where the factories were. Those who moved away were paid more. Skilled women could earn £2.15 a week.
“Whatever women do they must do twice as well as men to be thought half as good. Luckily this is not difficult” Charlotte Whitton, First Female Mayor of Ottawa. From 1914 to the current day, women’s status has drastically changed and shaped Canada. Women’s status has changed the economy, the overall perspective of women and the family life. Before world war one, women had little to no rights and were owned by men however, today women are more empowered than ever.
Dora Rodriguez Professor Rutledge English 1302 29 March 2014 Working Women in America On the 25 March 1911, a fire broke out at the Triangle Shirtwaist Company. One hundred forty-six died on that day, most of whom were women. These young ladies had been locked in during working hours to keep the union organizers out. “The Triangle fire shocked the nation” (Davidson et al. 599).