Richmond in Contra Costa County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
The Home Front Legacy
The Home Front Legacy
With World War II officially ended, Richmond filled with celebration in September, 1945. Years would pass before residents fully understood how much the war changed their lives.
A wave of new civilians bought homes and enrolled in college thanks to the "GI Bill." Although "old-timers" expected them to go home, most wartime migrants remained in the Bay Area. Having fought for democracy, veterans of home front and battlefield would not accept second-class status; the path to integrated schools, fair housing and workplace equity was worn by their marching feet.
Women had succeeded at men's work, and they wanted more. George Johnson remembered: "They couldn't understand why men made so much fuss over their job when it was so easy to weld." Though many lost jobs when the men came home, their daughters enrolled their children in day care (almost nonexistent before the war) then entered the trades, corporate offices and boardrooms.
Wartime demands had inspired new approaches to social needs. Affordable housing and childcare centers sprang up around Richmond's shipyards. Kaiser offered pre-paid healthcare to a newly integrated workforce. Those innovations were models
Erected by National Park Service.
Location. 37° 54.572′ N, 122° 21.416′ W. Marker is in Richmond, California, in Contra Costa County. Marker can be reached from Harbor Way South near Hall Avenue, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1414 Harbor Way South, Richmond CA 94804, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Ford Assembly Building (within shouting distance of this marker); "Victory ships were a bigger, complicated ship." (approx. half a mile away); "I was truly there and did my part to the end." -- Addie Mae Cance, former shipyard worker (approx. half a mile away); "It was a real workhorse." -- Jim Cannon, Marketing Director, Levin-Richmond Terminal Corp (approx. half a mile away); Dynamic Wartime Port (approx. 0.6 miles away); Rosie the Riveter Memorial (approx. 0.7 miles away); War Boomtown (approx. 0.7 miles away); Wartime Changes (approx. ¾ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Richmond.
More about this marker. This marker is located on the San Francisco Bay Trail, just east of the Rosie the Riveter Visitors Education Center.
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • War, World II •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on May 22, 2016, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 158 times since then and 16 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on May 22, 2016, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.