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ARCHIVED - Canadian War Industry during the Second World War

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Highlights of the Collection

Themes

Women go to Work


Unidentified 'lumberjill' who is a timekeeper in a lumber camp

Unidentified "lumberjill" who is a timekeeper in a lumber camp
e000761563 Source

Female shipyard worker swings a heavy hammer to drive a rivet into place while another female shipyard worker holds the rivet in place during construction of a ship in the Pictou shipyard

Female shipyard worker swings a heavy hammer to drive a rivet into place while another female shipyard worker holds the rivet in place during construction of a ship in the Pictou shipyard
e000761162 Source

 

Rosina Vanier, 16-year-old female worker employed in the Pictou shipyard

Rosina Vanier, 16-year-old female worker employed in the Pictou shipyard
e000761165 Source

Unidentified 'lumberjill' painting 'Aero Spruce Product of Canada' stencil on a pile of lumber

Unidentified "lumberjill" painting "Aero Spruce Product of Canada" stencil on a pile of lumber
e000761560 Source

 

Workmen at the John Inglis Co. Bren gun plant line up to be served by women workers at the cafeteria

Workmen at the John Inglis Co. Bren gun plant line up to be served by women workers at the cafeteria
e000760324 Source

Unidentified Lumberjill using pike pole to handle spruce logs, Queen Charlotte Islands, B.C

Unidentified Lumberjill using pike pole to handle spruce logs, Queen Charlotte Islands, B.C.
e000761559 Source

 

The War changed the demographics of the workplace. The demands of a war economy and the labour shortage that resulted from men serving in the war meant that women were encouraged to 'do their part' and enter the work force. For the first time in Canadian history, women were employed en masse in jobs typically held by men. The WRM photographs, for example, portray women in a multitude of professions  -  in cafeterias and as waitresses, as loggers or "lumberjills", shipbuilders, scientists or scientific technical workers, and munitions and armaments workers.