Rosie The Riveter’s Old Factory Turned Into Historic Aviation Museum


Good ol’ Rosie the Riveter. She is still, to this day, a modern American symbol of feminism and the progression of women throughout history.

For those not in the know, the famous character flexing her muscles wearing the blue collar shirt and red bandanna was actually modeled after real life riveter Rose Will Monroe, who was part of a team of women in Georgie, Michigan who made bdyromber planes during the 1940s.

Rosie, together with 40,000 women, toiled day and night in the Willow Run Plant to manufacture the B-24 Liberator bombs used during Second World War.

The women took up these jobs not on a whim, but because the government needed the women to work as all the men were away fighting the war. But out of this situation came an attitude that women are just as capable as men of doing the “hard labor” in the workforce.


In fact there are Rosie the Riveter camps being held around the US today to encourage and teach young girls about industries that are traditionally male-dominated. After WWII ended, a lot of the women who were forced to become pilots, and riveters because of the absence of men, were then told they were out of a job after the war ended which upset many of them.

And while the riveters were a crucial part of American history, they aren’t always written about in history books or taught in schools. But now Rosie and her team are about to be immortalized forever in American history thanks to a fundraising campaign.

Ray Hunter, chairman of the Yankee Air Museum in Belleville Michigan, started a Save The Willow Run Bomber Plant campaign and managed to raise $8million to convert the old plant into the new site of the Yankee Museum, while preserving an important slice of history as well.

They want to dedicate the new site to aviation and all the other Rosie’s who worked at similar plants around the country to aid the war effort. The fundraising group are seeking to raise a further $5million to fit out the interior, according to a press release.


The original plant was by the Ford Motor Company and featured a mile-long assembly line which produced a B-24 bomber every our, and 9000 in total.

After the war it became a factory for cars for General Motors, before closing its doors for good 4 years ago during the recession.

The papers were officially signed on Thursday October 23, which means Rosie and her fellow female heroes and their memory will not be reduced to dust by a wrecking ball.

“The building is truly saved.We’re very proud that we played a part in preserving” the plant, which “contributed so much to our victory in World War II,”said Ray Hunter about the historic event.

An article in the Franchise Herald states this news comes at an important time, to show that Rosie the Riveter being a symbol of modern day feminism shouldn’t be used alongside movements such as free the nipple.

“Dedicating the efforts to all the Rosie the Riveter will also save the memories and genuine meaning of what female empowerment is about. This is timely to correct the modern-day notion of women empowerment as baring one’s nipples or breast to the public. The name Rosie came from Rose Will Monroe, one of the women who fabricated the bombs for World War II. Her name became a symbol of courage and hard work,” it says.


In the video below made at the start of the campaign roughly 1 year ago shows a group of men who donated to the campaign speaking about how important it is that the younger generation know who these women were, and why their work needs to be preserved.

May Rosie the Riveter continue to live on throughout history as a symbol of hard work, perseverance in the face of hard times, and how women can really do anything when given the chance.

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