A deeper look at the Kaiser shipyards
By Chris Treadway
Contra Costa Times
Posted: 03/25/2013 12:40:44 PM PDT
Updated: 03/25/2013 12:40:44 PM PDT
Marian Sousan (draftsman, 1943-44), Marian Wynn (pipe welder, 1944-45) and Priscilla Elder (electrician, 1943-45) were all 'Rosies' who worked at Kaiser shipyard No. 3 in Richmond during World War II.
There were four shipyards in Kaiser's massive facilities on the Richmond waterfront, and shipyard No. 3 was the only one constructed with the intention of operating after the war.
Today, it is a shipping terminal for the Port of Richmond, but it is also home to the SS Red Oak Victory, launched in November 1944 from shipyard No. 1.
The last of the record-setting 747 ships built in Richmond, it is now owned by the Richmond Museum of History and part of the Rosie the Riveter World War II/Home Front National Park.
Here are some of the sites and activities for visitors to the national park:
· The Red Oak Victory is open for tours from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays at 1337 Canal Blvd. in the Port of Richmond.
There are also plans for the historic ship to sail under its own power for the first time since 1968, with fundraising now taking place. The historic cruise would be Nov. 11, Veterans Day.
A limited number of "sail certificates, " which allow the purchaser to be aboard the ship for the long-awaited voyage, are available and should be purchased before the July 30 reservation deadline.
Certificates are $20 each, and six are required to redeem for the sailing. To purchase or get more details, visit the gift shop on the Red Oak, 1337 Canal Blvd. in the Port of Richmond, or call 510-237-2933.
· The Rosie the Riveter Visitor Education Center is open daily at 1414 Harbour Way South in Richmond. Admission is free.
The center has a movie-screening room where showings include "Home Front Heroes," looking at the changes in Richmond during World War II; and "The War At Home," a national perspective of the home front during the war.
The center offers interpretive walking and bicycle tours along the waterfront, with a schedule at www.nps.gov/rori/planyourvisit/things2do.htm#CP_JUMP_526823.
Upcoming special programs at the center include a singalong to gospel, pop and patriotic standards of the 1930s and '40s at 3 p.m. March 30; and a 2 p.m. April 27 showing of the Emmy award-winning film "From A Silk Cocoon" by Satsuki Ina, a professor emeritus at Sacramento State whose parents refused to sign the loyalty oath the government required of Japanese-Americans during the war.