Greetings from Rosie The Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park

My Grandmother Marie Mitchell Willis worked as an Electrician on Minesweepers doing the degaussing electrical. She worked at Associated Shipbuilders Shipyard in Seattle, Washington, 1943 to 1946. During her time there, she put together a scrapbook. I have the scrapbook, in it, it has pictures, cards for crews of ship she worked on. It also had a build list of 32 ships.
I took pictures of everything in the scrapbook and did a lot of research on the ships listed. I found most of the ships were “Lend Lease Ships”. I made a binder of each of those ships to find out what they did. Also, she had a picture of a ship that I did not recognize and on it in pencil was written “AVP”. So, I looked to find out what type of ship that was. Found out it was a “Seaplane Tender”, and they were built in Kirkland, Washington at Lake Washington Shipyard and they built 60 of them, and some came to Associated for electrical work. My Grandma was one of 50 women elected to go on “Sea Trials” of a Minesweeper. First time women had EVER been allowed to do that.
From what my Grandmother did, has sent me on a journey that I would never have dreamed of. I was in the Coast Guard and was told we were involved at Normandy. Did not realize how involved we were. I located each ship the Coast Guard had there and their history, I have records of over 1,000 ships and their history. I have close to 90 computer files on those ships.

I would love to send you her scrapbook files of her time at the shipyard and any other files I have.


Rosie The Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park

This national historical park honors the estimated 18 million women who joined defense and support industries during World War II. It also features the SS Red Oak Victory Ship—the last of the 747 ships launched at Richmond, California, during World War II. The Rosie the Riveter Memorial began as a public art project in the 1990s and is sculpted to resemble the form of a liberty ship. The structure showcases photos and quotes from real-life “Rosies,” and a walkway features an inscribed timeline commemorating events from the American home front during the war.

State(s): California

Established: 2000

“It is important to show the history of what this country did during the war. So much of it has been lost or forgotten.”

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