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The Pacific Parachute Company during World War II—Historical Photograph

Historical photographs of people and events can teach us about what life was like in the past. The woman in this photograph is a worker at the Pacific Parachute Company in San Diego.

Primary Source

There is a photograph of a woman making parachutes in World War 2.

Source: Library of Congress.


During World War II, many factories opened in California to manufacture goods for the military. Hundreds of thousands of African Americans moved to California at this time to get jobs as factory workers. Many were from the South, where they had worked in agriculture or the domestic service industry. People wanted factory jobs because they paid more. African American women who worked in the domestic service industry at this time earned around $3.50 a week. Those who worked at factories could earn around $48 a week.