Remembering World War II in the East Bay: Rosie the Riveter and S.S. Red Oak Victory

The Bay Area boasts some great tributes to World War II history. We visited the S.S. Red Oak Victory ship in Richmond, CA.

World War II History in the East Bay: Life ring from the SS Red Oak Victory Ship
World War II History in the East Bay: SS Red Oak Victory Ship
The S.S. Red Oak Victory was a bit off the beaten path. We had to wind our way through some docks and this new car lot to get there.

World War II History in the East Bay: SS Red Oak Victory Ship

We were able to tour the inside and outside of the ship. The tour guides could stand to add a little color to their stories. When asked about some of the history of the ship, we were told it was mostly a cargo vessel and that nothing really extraordinary had happened on-board. They need to focus in on the impressive accomplishments -- like the fact that the vessel was built in a little over a month by a team of mostly women welders.

We saw this diagram on the inside of the ship. I wonder what a "wedge stuffing tube" is.

World War II History in the East Bay: engineering diagram inside the SS Red Oak Victory Ship

The ship also contained instructions in the engine room about what to do in case of an atomic attack.

World War II History in the East Bay: Instructions in case of atomic attack inside the SS Red Oak Victory ShipOur second stop was the Rosie the Riveter Memorial, a tribute to all the women that went to work in traditionally male jobs when the men went off to war. The National Park Service offers a free informational tour of the memorial on Saturday afternoons. They did a fantastic job complete with props and popular music from the WWII era.

World War II History in the East Bay: Rosie the Riveter MemorialThere were short stories stamped in the pavement that described what it was like at the time. "A chaperone was hired to escort us to our workplace and herd us to the bathroom and lunch. They didn't know how the men would react. But soon there were just too many of us."

World War II History in the East Bay: Rosie the Riveter Memorial - stories
World War II History in the East Bay: Rosie the Riveter MemorialAnother inspirational quote: "You must tell your children, putting modesty aside, that without us, without women, there would have been no spring in 1945."

World War II History in the East Bay: Rosie the Riveter Memorial - inspirational quote about the role of women in the war effortOur visit was both educational and fascinating.

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Sidewalk Safari: Remembering World War II in the East Bay: Rosie the Riveter and S.S. Red Oak Victory
Remembering World War II in the East Bay: Rosie the Riveter and S.S. Red Oak Victory
Explore World War II history in San Francisco's East Bay near Richmond, California. A photo-rich post written by travel blogger Jennifer (aka Dr. J) from Sidewalk Safari.
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