Looking to learn more about the WWII Home Front? Start by clicking here.
Learn About WWII Home Front History
Welcome to Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park. The Visitor Education Center provides educational and interactive exhibits. People of all ages can learn about this important time and place in history and how it impacted our daily lives. This relatively new National Park was established in 2000.
The park staff is currently working with the City of Richmond, Contra Costa County and other park partners to preserve the historic World War II resources in Richmond. Some historic sites are open to the public, while others are only viewable from the outside. Please be sure stop by the Visitor Education Center, first, in order to watch our films, learn about local history and pick up a map that will provide guidance to park sites throughout the city of Richmond, California.
Visitor Education Center
Free Admission For Exhibits and Films
We recommend making the Visitor Center your first stop. We are located at: 1414 Harbour Way South, Suite 3000, in Richmond, California. We provide interactive and educational exhibits as well as a variety of park films, which show in our theater on a regular schedule. Entry to the visitor center and the films are free. Pleasecontact us by email or call 510-232-5050, with any questions.
Rosie Fridays - Meet a real WWII Home Front worker
On most Fridays, you can visit with real Home Front workers from WWII. For schedule, please call the Visitor Education Center at 510-232-5050.
Betty Reid Soskin Programs
Betty Reid Soskin's programs are very popular, Reservations for seats must be made in advance, by phone. Please call (510) 232-5050 x0. For groups larger than 24 visitors, special arrangements are required. For information about her current programs, please check the Calendar for dates and times.
Ranger and Docent Programs
Calendar of Programs and Events
Enjoy free ranger, docent and guest speaker programs at the Visitor Education Center. Our rangers provide both scheduled bus and Visitor Education Center tours, as well. If you have a large group, please call the visitor center at least a few days in advance to check for available dates. You may also tour the Visitor Education Center on your own, or enjoy our free driving tourbrochure which will guide you around the park sites. Visitors may see all of the listed programs through the Calendar search page . Please note that program times and dates are subject to change. You may call the Visitor Education Center for more information: 510-232-5050.
Rosie the Riveter Memorial
The Rosie the Riveter Memorial began as a public art project for the City of Richmond in the 1990's. During the creation of the memorial, the National Park Service was invited to participate, and this partnership led to the founding of the National Park in Richmond, California.
Designed by visual artist Susan Schwartzenberg and landscape architect/environmental sculptor Cheryl Barton, the Rosie the Riveter Memorial: Honoring American Women's Labor During WWII is the first in the nation to honor and describe this important chapter of American history. Chairwoman Donna Powers led the campaign to establish the Memorial and the sculpture was commissioned by the City of Richmond and the Richmond Redevelopment Agency.
The principal component is a walkway, the length of a ship's keel, which slopes toward the San Francisco Bay and aligns with the Golden Gate Bridge.The path is inscribed with a timeline about the home front and quotes from women workers sandblasted into white granite. Sculptural elements of stainless steel encountered on the walkway are drawn from ship's blueprints and suggest the unfinished forms of hull, stack and stern under construction. Two gardens - one of rockrose and one of dune grass - occupy the location of the ship's fore and aft hatches. Porcelain enamel panels on the hull and stack reproduce memorabilia and letters gathered from former shipyard workers during the course of the Memorial project, along with photographs of women at work in jobs across the nation.
The panels, quotes and timeline illustrate the complex opportunities, challenges and hardships faced by women during the war years, including gender discrimination, hazardous working conditions, food rationing, and shortages of housing and childcare.
Donna Powers was inspired to create the Memorial by two women in her family. Her mother-in-law Ruth Powers was a teacher at the Richmond shipyards daycare centers and her great aunt Clarissa Hicks was a riveter at Douglas Aircraft in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Their wonderful stories led her to ask other women around Richmond what their jobs and lives were like during WWII, and the project grew under the leadership of historian and cultural planner Donna Graves.
Address: Marina Park - Regatta Blvd., Richmond, CA
I-580 Marina Bay Parkway exit south to right on Regatta Blvd., Marina Park is on left.
Visit the Red Oak Victory Ship
The SS Red Oak Victory Ship is the last surviving ship built in the Kaiser Shipyards, and is owned by the non-profit Richmond Museum Association. Today, the Red Oak Victory remains a monument to the men and women who worked in war related industries as part of the World War II Home Front. In 1998, the ship was saved from the Naval Reserve Fleet in Suisun Bay by a courageous group of men and women and has been under restoration since that time. When visiting, take the time to talk to the volunteers on boards the ship. If you are lucky enough to find one who actually served on Merchant Marine vessels during the war, find out what that life was like - ask them how they felt to be on board ships built by women.
The SS Red Oak Victory is open Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday-Sunday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Admission fees listed in the link, below. A Passport Stamp station is on the Ship. (The ship has a steep gangplank, and is not fully accessible). Ship's phone: (510-237-2933)