A World War II advertising image that stood for the strength and solidarity of American women in support of the war effort is still popular today.
On Thursday, March 21, beginning at 6 p.m., the Rehoboth Beach Museum will celebrate Rosie the Riveter Night. In addition to seeing interesting exhibits from that time, visitors will have the opportunity to take a photo of themselves and their children as Rosie the Riveter.
Visitors will be encouraged to pose in front of a backdrop of the famous Rosie the Riveter cultural icon. What a great way to teach younger generations about the history of the important role of women in fighting World War II. Participants are encouraged to dress in an outfit similar to Rosie’s, and replicas of the red-and-white polka dot bandanas in the Rosie picture will be provided for those who would like to wear one for the photo op. Rosies of all ages, shapes and orientations are welcome.
During World War II, women across the country - and across the state - left their homes for factory and shipyard jobs in support of the war effort, replacing the men who went overseas, and working as riveters, buckers, welders and electricians. The Rosie the Riveter advertisements were widely displayed in the print media of the time to encourage and recruit more women to join this effort.
The museum’s new exhibit includes one of Rehoboth Beach’s own Rosies. Lucy Jacobs, who later was the owner of the Plantations Restaurant in Rehoboth Beach, filled shells in a munitions plant. The exhibit features a newspaper article from the 1940s with a photo of her at work in the factory. The exhibit also features other new displays about local scenes and life in Rehoboth Beach during World War II, and the observation towers along the beach road.
Commentaries on this period have emphasized how the long-range significance of the changes brought about by the changing role of women in the war effort war provided a foundation for the contemporary women's movement. One author wrote, "For the first time, the working woman dominated the public image. Women were riveting housewives in slacks, not mothers or domestic beings.”
The backdrop will be on display through the weekend. Visitors are also welcome to drop in and pose for selfies March 22 through March 24. The museum is open Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.