Mary Torres and friends May 30, 2015 20:42

  • Before Mary Torres worked at the shipyards in Oakland, she had worked at McClellean Air Base with her friends Louise and Vernice. She tells the story this way:  "The only friends I made at McClellan Air Base was Louisa and Vernice; they worked in the office. We soon developed a close friendship. I decided to go to Moore's shipyards in Oakland and learned to weld. I wrote and told them I was now helping to build ships. They called and asked if they could learn to weld. They came to Moore's shipyards and gave welding a try. A day later, they went back to their office jobs at McClellan. They could not take the sparks, smoke and work. Here's a picture of us in 1942" 

Catherine "Kay" Morrison May 27, 2015 16:43

  Kaiser Shipyard. Changing shift.

"It never ceased to amaze me that over 90,000 people were employed in the four Kaiser Shipyards!"  

Lloyd Wynn May 27, 2015 16:31

"My husband, Lloyd Wynn, enlisted into the Navy in April, 1942, at the age of 20 years old .

He served as a Gunners Mate 3rd class until Oct. 1945. He made several trips overseas, on cargo ships , taking supplies to the troops .
The SS Lincoln Steffens was built and launched at Kaiser Shipyards in Richmond, CA .    Launched Nov. 04, 1942 . Lloyd crossed the Panama Canal on it on Dec.11, 1942."  Marian Wynn 

Marian Sousa remembers May 07, 2015 23:33

 Marian and a classmate during   Senior Dress Up Day 1943

"During WW II, going to the movies was a bargain: 2 major features, a cartoon, and a news reel. You were lucky to find a seat where a sleeping person (snoring) wasn't next to you!"

Catherine "Kay" Morrison May 01, 2015 12:54

"My worst fear was that the San Francisco Bay Bridge would be bombed! I took the San Francisco Ferry each night for the Graveyard Shift 11 PM - 7AM six days a week to Shipyard #2 in Richmond. The bridge and surrounding areas were blacked out, and the water and the night were so eerie and scary to a 20 year old girl!" 

Mary "Rosie" Torres April 30, 2015 15:11 2 Comments

Mary Torres was  nine years old when she asked her father why she didn't have a middle name. He replied:  "Someday you will pick out a special name."

The middle name she chose was "Rosie". 

Marian Wynn April 24, 2015 12:59

Marian Wynn:  "One Sunday, my leaderman, Larry, and I were working on the ship. I was 18 years old; tacking handrails on the ship. Larry called me over to the side of the ship to point out and tell me what all the buildings were along the shoreline. He pointed to Treasure Island and said, "That's where your boyfriend works." He was later my husband. All I could think of was, "I am making $ 2.00 an hour;  standing here talking to this man."  That was compared to the 53 cents an hour I was making in Minnesota to pay for my trip to California."

Priscilla Elder Turns 95 April 11, 2015 23:48


Priscilla Elder turned 95 years young on March 23. Ever young, even at 95, she continues to volunteer at the Rosie Center in Richmond, CA and attends lots of "Rosie" functions. All of the Rosies who volunteer along with her at the Visitors Center; celebrated  her 95th at Mimi's Restaurant in Concord, CA. Her son Charles drove in from  Arizona, and her niece and nephew drove down from Oregon. What a celebration!

Priscilla was an electrician at the Kaiser Shipyards. 

Who were these women? March 26, 2015 18:32

They were young, beautiful and totally inexperienced in the ways of  manufacturing. They were expected to stay at home and raise families and let their husbands bring home the paycheck. That was the way it was before the WW II. In 1936, 82% of all Americans believed that a woman shouldn't hold a job if her husband already had one. But four short years later, when WW II was started and we entered the war, the country had to turn to someone to fill the jobs that men were leaving. The burden fell predominantly on women. 

What women showed the world was that they were not only as good as the men they replaced, but in many instances...they were better. Better than men as welders?! As pipe welders?! As electricians and draftsmen?! In many cases they were but that did not guarantee them a permanent place of respect. They had to earn it. And earn it they did. And they are still earning and fighting for their place at the table.