Build 'Em by the Mile

Build 'Em by the Mile

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"Build 'Em by the Mile, Cut 'Em off by the Yard: How Henry J. Kaiser and the Rosies Helped Win World War II" by Steve Gilford

As far back into his childhood as he can remember, Steve Gilford enjoyed talking with his and his friends' parents and grandparents about their histories. Later, as a writer and producer of award-winning network television documentaries and radio news programs, he had the opportunity to interview literally hundreds of people from all sorts of backgrounds, including Nobel Laureates, whom he accompanied to Stockholm for a documentary about their research, and a cafe owner in a remote desert town in Utah for a peripatetic radio series. Twenty-five years ago, when his work as an independent writer and historian brought him to the former Kaiser Shipyards, he became fascinated with the story of how this place, in a few short years, went from marshland to the most productive shipyards in the history of the world and he began seeking out the people who made it happen.

“This book is about a time when millions of Americans put their hearts, minds, and bodies into a clearly recognized goal, defeating the forces of Germany and Japan. The stories of the people who accomplished this are a reminder of the potential of this nation to rise up and meet a challenge. The Second World War is long over [but] once again, vital challenges face us. When they seem overwhelming and when the task seems as though it might be too much for us, we can turn to the example of America’s World War II home front and in particular to the Kaiser Shipyards in Richmond, California.” - Congressman George Miller