Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Overalls....... for working all the live long day...

When Johnny went marching off to World War II, the ladies went to work in factories and farms in positions they had not been allowed to in the years before. Making airplanes and bombs, and running farms and growing potatoes and onions.

Here's a co-ed from Mt. Holyoke College working in the college farm fields, as a member of The Women's Land Army. Farm boys went to war, and the gals went to work the fields. Here's a gal chatting with a farmer.

Great picture of The WLA with their anklets, saddle shoes and Bass Weejuns, their overalls and rolled up jeans, with buckets, hoes and shovels. Their hair is covered with tied kerchiefs and scarves, and wearing over sized shirts for comfort.

These gals are working on making B-29's at Seattle's Boeing Plant.

Here's more women working to sort chicks......or are those potatoes??

The US Government encouraged women to go into the work force, and encouraged their middle-aged husbands to be supportive.
Honestly, working class women had always been in the work force. Only middle class and wealthy women ever had the luxury of staying home to raise the family.......but all women had been made to feel guilty for working. For many many women, WWII brought opportunities for work outside the home, and once the war was over.........some women went home and TV and Ladies magazines encouraged them to go home and buy washing machines and have a lot of children.

Here's Norman Rockwell's tribute to Rosie the Riveter.....who was a real person......we are completely familiar with her!

" The Depression and World War II pushed more women into the work force than ever before and inspired increased organizational activity. The New Deal both improved working conditions for women, encouraged a high level of women’s participation in organized labor, and overcame some racial prejudices against non-white women workers.  Despite these gains, sexism and racism continued to plague women in the labor force and in labor unions. "

More gals in The Women's Land Army.

After the war, Josephine the Plumber stayed on working in a "man's world". Trying to straddle the gap, to market to formerly working women, the domestic gal, and the women working and running a home.... Comet cleanser stepped in to sell a product to keep your sink and bathtub sparkling clean!

pics from Mt.Holyoke archives, archives.gov/publications, and Library of Congress

funkomavintage has an authentic pair of WWII, 40s vintage women's overalls. These are by J.C. Penney, and are labeled Women At Work. 

40s Can't Bust 'Em overalls.....

2 classic pair of vintage Overalls.......from Key workwear, most often found at feed stores, and a pair of vintage Redrock overalls, from Big Smith, the makers of denim jeans.