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Richmond Named World War II Heritage City

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Kay Morrison was a welder in the Richmond Shipyard during World War II. Here, she is seen in 2015 at Craneway Pavilion for the signing of the California Fair Pay Act. (Danielle Parenteau-Decker for Richmond Confidential)

By Michael J. Fitzgerald

Richmond has been named an official American World War II Heritage City by the National Park Service, one of 11 U.S. communities U.S. so honored by the NPS in late December.

The American World War II Heritage Cities Program honors contributions of towns, cities, counties and their citizens who joined the workforce to support U.S. war efforts.

The program allows that only one Heritage City can be named in each state or territory.

The other new designated communities are: Foley, Alabama; Tempe, Arizona; Wilmington, Delaware; Waterloo, Iowa; Baltimore County, Maryland; Johnson County and Warrensburg, Missouri (joint community nomination); Hastings, Nebraska; Boulder City and Henderson, Nevada (joint community nomination); Yonkers, New York; and Bedford County, Virginia.

>>>Read: The Keeper of Richmond’s History Has Run the Light Station, a WWII Warship and a Century-Old Inn

Heritage officials said in an announcement that World War II permeated every aspect of American life, resulting in large migrations of people. Individuals and families relocated to industrial centers like the city of Richmond for good-paying war jobs and out of a sense of patriotic duty.

Contributions by the communities include  manufacturing items such as ships, aircraft, uniforms, and equipment. They also were involved in production of food and consumer items for the armed forces and home consumption as well as civil defense preparedness.

The John D. Dingell Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act of 2019 established the World War II Heritage Cities program to recognize the historic importance of the United States’ domestic involvement in World War II and to ensure the continued preservation of a defining period in American history. This year’s additions to the list follow the inaugural designation of Wilmington, North Carolina, in September 2020.

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