Willwork, Inc. Exhibit & Event Services is a leading national exposition services and event management company.  We work from coast to coast, and operate offices in major cities across America.

Willwork launched 30 years ago.  Our exclusive service back then was supplying skilled trades personnel for the Greater Boston area shows and events industry.  Yes, a lot has changed for us since 1987, and we have grown considerably.  Yet, for sure, while today Willwork is national (and also handles select international engagements), and provides the full gamut of shows and events services, we still recognize that our marrow and institutional DNA is all about quality labor.

For every type of service Willwork offers, we endeavor to deliver that service, that labor, with the best effort, most intense focus, highest integrity, and utmost reliability – whether it is installing an exhibit, holding and running an internal pre-show planning meeting, rolling out carpet, brainstorming with a client, transporting freight, developing customized software, designing an audiovisual display or production, helping a client fill out a show kit, hanging signage … and whatever else it takes, and in all that we do.

Willwork thought it appropriate for Labor Day 2017 to provide a nod to the roots and heritage of the holiday … and of Willwork, Inc. Exhibit & Event Services.

And, appropriately, we chose as subject, an iconic image – and a composite of skilled and important … indeed, vitally important … labor:  Rosie the Riveter.

Rosie the Riveter is the emblem, the face, of American women factory workers during World War II who helped form the backbone of the “Arsenal of Democracy,” and were integral to defeating tyranny and preserving freedom.

(Image credit: “Rosie the Riveter,” oil painting by Norman Rockwell. Photo by Photo Courtesy Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, AR. Norman Rockwell’s original “Rosie the Riveter” is among the permanent collection at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.)

Culturally, in America, “Rosie the Riveter” is widely identified with two images (attached here):  the poster, “We Can Do It,” designed by J. Howard Miller and  produced by General Electric Westinghouse in 1943 to motivate workers in its war production facilities; and the Norman Rockwell painting which was the cover art for the May 29, 1943 issue of the Saturday Evening Post.

Following are the first two paragraphs of an A&E History article on Rosie the Riveter:

“American women entered the workforce in unprecedented numbers during World War II, as widespread male enlistment left gaping holes in the industrial labor force. Between 1940 and 1945, the female percentage of the U.S. workforce increased from 27 percent to nearly 37 percent, and by 1945 nearly one out of every four married women worked outside the home. ‘Rosie the Riveter,’ star of a government campaign aimed at recruiting female workers for the munitions industry, became perhaps the most iconic image of working women during the war.

“In movies, newspapers, posters, photographs and articles, the Rosie the Riveter campaign stressed the patriotic need for women to enter the work force. On May 29, 1943, The Saturday Evening Post published a cover image by the artist Norman Rockwell, portraying Rosie with a flag in the background and a copy of Adolf Hitler’s racist tract ‘Mein Kampf’ under her feet. Though Rockwell’s image may be the most commonly known version of Rosie the Riveter, her prototype was actually created in 1942 and featured on a poster for the Westinghouse power company under the headline ‘We Can Do It!’ Early in 1943, a popular song debuted called ‘Rosie the Riveter,’ written by Redd Evans and John Jacob Loeb, and the name went down in history.”

(Of important note: in the A&E History article, inserted between those two paragraphs above was this informative sentence:  “Though women who entered the workforce during World War II were crucial to the war effort, their pay continued to lag far behind their male counterparts: Female workers rarely earned more than 50 percent of male wages.”)

Please click here to be taken to a place at the A & E History website where you can find the full article, and video and audio, about Rosie the Riveter.  The article also discusses the 350,000 women who served in the U.S. Armed Services during World War II.

This Labor Day Weekend, on Labor Day itself … and everyday … Willwork, Inc. Exhibit & Event Services honors and thanks the working people of America who built our nation, forged its character, give to and provide opportunity, produced the instruments and devices that kept … and keep … us safe, and whose labor is essential and integral to the greatness of our republic.

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