Work and Patriotism

Posters like these linked shipyard productivity and patriotism. Produced by the Emergency Fleet Corporation, they reminded shipyard workers of the importance of their efforts and to do a good job.

Teamwork Wins, about 1918

Hibberd V. B. Kline, artist

United States Shipping Board, Emergency Fleet Corporation

Your Work Means Victory, 1917

Fred J. Hoertz, artist

United States Shipping Board, Emergency Fleet Corporation; Gift of Frank O. Braynard

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On the Job for Victory, about 1918

Jonas Lie, artist

United States Shipping Board, Emergency Fleet Corporation


Plate puller, about 1918

Workers used this tool to align pre-punched holes in standardized hull plates before riveting them.

Gift of Walter Davis


Gift of Capt. Raymond A. and Catherine M. Kotrla

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Typical Wartime Freighter, 1919

The federal government’s massive investment in shipbuilding was a boon to American industry. In gratitude, the Association of Northwestern Shipbuilders presented this silver model to outgoing Emergency Fleet Corporation Director-General Charles Piez in April 1919.


Shipyard Volunteers

A push to recruit 250,000 additional shipyard workers in early 1918 led the Emergency Fleet Corporation to create the “U.S. Shipyard Volunteers.” Men who signed up to work in the yards were exempted from the military draft.

Shop-front sign advertising immediate wartime work, New York City, 1918

Courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration


Shipyard volunteer’s button, 1918–19

Transfer from the U.S. Shipping Board, Emergency Fleet Corporation


Emergency Fleet Corporation badge and button

Transfer from the U.S. Shipping Board, Emergency Fleet Corporation


Gift of James D. Andrew Jr.

A Launching

To mark Memorial Day in 1919, the Hog Island shipyard launched five freighters in 48 minutes. Laura Andrew, wife of the yard’s ship-construction manager, christened the last of these, the Luxpalile, by breaking this bottle over its the bow. She received the broken glass in this box as a memento.


Five ships were launched in 48 minutes, Memorial Day, 1919.

From a scrapbook donated by James D. Andrew Jr.


Freighter American Merchant

Built at Philadelphia, 1920

A Standardized Ship

Hog Island produced 110 identical cargo ships and 12 identical troop transports. This model represents one of the transports. All of Hog Island’s ships arrived too late to play a role in the war. But the Liberty ships of World War II and the modular construction of ships today owe their success to the mass-production techniques tried and tested at Hog Island.

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