Sisters in Steel: Where the Women Were During the Deindustrialization of Pittsburgh

Open Access
Author:
Sheets, Kallie Allyson
Area of Honors:
History (Altoona)
Degree:
Bachelor of Humanities
Document Type:
Thesis
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Julia Hudson Richards, Thesis Supervisor
  • Laura Rotunno, Honors Advisor
  • Marc Loren Harris, Faculty Reader
Keywords:
  • Pittsburgh
  • Unions
  • Women
  • Steel Mills
  • Labor Movement
Abstract:
Unions play a pivotal role in the development of the labor movement in America. Women are the driving force behind the movement and rarely have their stories told in the male dominated environment that unions mostly cater. Women have made their way into the unions and workforce because of increased economic need to be able to support families and continue a certain lifestyle. Specifically within the mills, women have had a difficult time finding their place in the traditional male environment. In Pittsburgh, women have worked their way into the Steel Mills and made their presence known by fighting for workers’ rights and equal treatment. The closing of the mills hit the women especially hard, and the layoffs made it almost impossible to support families. Women have always been in the picture, but rarely discussed to any extent.