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Museum Minute: Women Workers at Winchester Repeating Arms Company

McCracken Research Library

When men went off to fight on the front lines in World War I, many factories and companies replaced their workforce with women and young boys. 

But the Winchester Repeating Arms Company started employing women as managers even before the war. That's according to Samantha Harper, the archivist at the McCracken Research Library. 

“They were very fair employers when it came to women and how they were treated, especially when you’re looking at the teens era and before the war,” said Harper.  

Harper said at that time it was fairly unusual that women could be in charge of men within the workplace. But the company took an egalitarian approach earlier than most companies. And after the war, they hired even more women.

Kamila has worked for public radio stations in California, New York, France and Poland. Originally from New York City, she loves exploring new places. Kamila received her master in journalism from Columbia University. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring the surrounding areas with her two pups and husband.