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  • Laci Barry Post

Pilots, Nurses, and More - Women in World War II at the Museum of Aviation

Updated: Aug 24, 2023

The poster made me want to join! It said there were 239 positions for women in The Army of the United States. The blonde, uniformed woman wearing red lipstick appeared to be plotting something important on a strategic map. The poster made you feel like you could be important and do something important for the war effort.

A couple of weeks ago, I visited The Museum of Aviation next to the Robins Air Force Base in Warner Robins, Georgia. It is a wonderful museum full of airplanes and memorabilia from World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and more. It is staffed by friendly, veteran volunteers who love answering questions and sharing their unique knowledge. What’s more is that it is free!

I have so much to share about the various exhibits, but one set of items that particularly caught my eye were the ones for women during World War II. There are posters, uniforms, and even a special dress. I photographed two other propaganda posters besides the one mentioned above. One implores women to serve for their country’s sake today and for their own sake tomorrow. The other is for the Red Cross and features Uncle Sam with his hand on the shoulder of a saintly looking nurse wearing a red cape. That one made me feel like I could be a superhero nurse!

Two female uniforms are featured in the museum. There is a display with a uniform for an Army nurse, and you can learn about real-life Army nurse, Lt. Dot Moseley. Close by, there is also an exhibit featuring a Women Air Force Service Pilots (WASP) uniform along with real-life stories and WASP wings first issued in December 1943.

Lastly, I photographed a beautiful white dress. You may wonder why a dress would end up in a World War II exhibit. The dress is special as it is a replica of a dress made with American parachutes recovered at Graignes after the June 6, 1944 Normandy landings during World War II. The original dress was worn by Martha Rigault as a maid of honor in a double wedding for her sisters. There were many dresses made from parachutes during the time.

If you haven’t visited the Museum of Aviation, I highly recommend a visit! It will be well worth your time to walk through the exhibits and talk to the incredible veterans volunteering there.

“She was a tool-crib operator. Believe it or not, this whole place used to be covered with women or ‘soldiers of production’ like they were called.”

Song of Return, Chapter 9


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