Rosie The Riveter

December 17, 2011 by NG1988  
Published in Women

The history of Rosie the Riveter.

            Rosie the Riveter was responsible for recruiting nearly 2 million women into the workforce working in war production plants and civilian services. She led The War Advertising Council’s Women in War Jobs campaign which is still the most successful recruitment campaign to date (Thompson, n.d.). Her campaign ad portrayed her as a woman in the work force wearing a blue work shirt, her signature red and white polka dot scarf over her hair and flexing her arm. Above her image was the slogan, “We Can Do It!” Of course, Rosie the Riveter was a fictional character but her image led to social change and empowerment for women in the early 40s, a time when most women only worked inside the home.

            Rosie the Riveter has been immortalized through photos, ads, posters, stamps and social change. She sent the message that womanpower was a patriotic responsibility and encouraged women to take off the aprons and toss aside the brooms and get involved in the work industry to support the war. Before long, women working outside the home not only became socially accepted but also desirable. Rosie’s campaign kicked off in 1943 and by 1944 she had successfully recruited the 2 million women needed to support the war efforts from the work place and changed the social norms for women forever.


Thompson, J. “Women in War Jobs – Rosie the Riveter (1942-1945)” Ad Council. n.d. Retrieved from

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