Known to most as "Rosie the Riveter," for years Geraldine Doyle was unknowingly a symbol of women's independence and the war effort in WWII.

31 Jul 1924 1
Inkster, MI 2
26 Dec 2010 3
Lansing, MI 3

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Personal Details

Also known as:
Rosie the Riveter 3
31 Jul 1924 1
Inkster, MI 2
Female 2
26 Dec 2010 2
Lansing, MI 2
Cause: Complications from arthritis 4
Mother: Augusta 1
Father: Cornelious Hoff 1
Employer: a factory near her home 4
Position: metal presser 4
Place: Inkster, MI 4
Start Date: 1942 4
End Date: 1942 4
Position: cellist 2
Place: soda fountain and bookstore 5
From: 1942 5
To: 1942 5
cellist 6
singer 6

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Early years

Ann Arbor, MI

Geraldine Hoff was born on 31 July 1924, daughter to her father Cornelious, an electrical contractor, and her mother Augusta, a composer.  From the early years, life was challenging for Geraldine: her father died of pneumonia when she was only 10 years old, and her mother had scoliosis.

Junior high and high school

Ann Arbor, MI

As she grew, so did her love of music. She became known for her abilities both with the cello and with her voice. She even soloed with bands in the early 1940s. She eventually graduated at the age of 17 from high school in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Rosie the Riveter

Geraldine soon found work as a metal presser in the factories of American Broach & Machine Co. (also in Ann Arbor). As men were drafted into the military to go to war in Europe during World War II, many women found work in what had previously been considered "male only" employment (like work in factories). However, after hearing of an injury to the hands of a previous employee, she soon changed jobs, fearing what such an injury might do to her future in playing the cello.

A new direction

Her employment switched to a soda fountain and bookshop, also located in Ann Arbor. It was here that she wooed a young dental school student, Leo Doyle. Soon after, they were married. The two remained married until his death in 2010.

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