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We Did It!

An Air Zoo original Exhibit

We Did It!

The Riveting Real Rosies of WWII 

Woman Working on a PlaneWomen answered the call. 

Seeking to help defeat the Axis, women found guidance in a nationwide government ad campaign, which also helped produce an icon of women’s empowerment fondly known as “Rosie the Riveter.” Filling traditional male roles, these real “Rosies” worked dirty and sometimes dangerous jobs1 and made significant contributions to the war effort. 

In We Did It: The Riveting Real Rosies of WWII, you’ll meet some of the women who answered America’s call to fill defense plant positions in the 1940s. Learn about the recruitment process, the art of the famous Rosie poster, and the many kinds of jobs these women took in service to their country. See an authentic rivet gun, rivet manual, and paystub on loan from Yankee Air Museum, which sits on the former site of the Willow Run plant where women manufactured one B-24 bomber an hour. Watch video interviews from the children of real Rosies. Take a picture with our “We Can Do It!” poster cutout. 




Rosie on the Radio

Some say Redd Evans and John Jacob Loeb’s “Rosie the Riveter gave the defense workers their nickname. Various artists covered the tune, including the Four Vagabonds, listen below and sign along!

"All the day long whether rain or shine
She’s a part of the assembly line
She’s making history, working for victory
Rosie the Riveter

Keeps a sharp lookout for sabotage
Sitting up there on the fuselage
That little frail can do more than a male can do
Rosie the Riveter

Rosie’s got a boyfriend, Charlie
Charlie, he’s a Marine
Rosie is protecting Charlie
Working overtime on the riveting machine
When they gave her a production “E”
She was as proud as a girl could be

There’s something true about
Red, white, and blue about
Rosie the Riveter

Everyone stops to admire the scene
Rosie at work on the B-Nineteen
She’s never twittery, nervous or jittery
Rosie the Riveter
What if she’s smeared full of oil and grease
Doing her bit for the old Lendlease

She keeps the gang around
They love to hang around
Rosie the Riveter

Rosie buys a lot of war bonds
That girl really has sense
Wishes she could purchase
more bonds
Putting all her cash into national defense
Senator Jones who is “in the know”
Shouted these words on the radio
Berlin will hear about
Moscow will cheer about
Rosie the Riveter!"

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