partners exhibit heading

Women Serving the Military
Women Serving the Military

View more photographs of "Government Girls."





Women served in crucial positions in intelligence gathering and analysis, and cryptography. To this day, many will not talk about their classified jobs.

cryptography cryptography

Virginia Hall (right) served as an OSS spy in France during the war. In spite of having an artificial leg, she was undetected while scouting suitable drop zones for Allied paratroopers. She is the first civilian female to have received the Distinguished Service Cross, but she insisted it be awarded in a secret ceremony so she could maintain her “cover.”
Virginia Hall

All across the country, women filled positions in government bureaucracies swollen to administer regulations governing all aspects of American life. Almost 100,000 women throughout the country served as unpaid assistants to local rationing boards that distributed coupons based on individual evaluations of need.

To the right is an article called “OPA Juniors” from The American Magazine, October 1943. Click on image to see larger view.

OPA Juniors


previous page next page

 Photo Credits (L to R): #1 - 3: National Cryptologic Museum, # 4: History is a Hoot, #5: The Women's Memorial

(c) Copyright National Women's History Museum 2007