Women

The massive shipbuilding projects of World War II brought a need to fill jobs with as many available bodies as possible. Many jobs traditionally filled by men were vacant due to the massive mobilization of the military. Reluctantly at times, many shipyards hired women to fill positions and power the shipbuilding industry at full steam. At the same time that shipbuilding was peaking, the employment of women peaked at 11.4% Despite the opportunities of the industry, women still faced many challenges. The pay was not equal for the work being done. Many of the jobs were clerical or the most basic of the work. Although they were welders, they were not taught through apprenticeship and learned down-hand welding to construct subassemblies. Much like contemporary workers, childcare was another major challenge to employment. Women with children had to not only work at the shipyard but also raise their families. While some owners provided services for employees this was not always adequate for all.