“Like girls from Mars are these “top women” at U.S. Steel's Gary, Indiana Works, Their job is to clean up at regular intervals around the tops of twelve blast furnaces. As a safety precaution, the girls wear oxygen masks while they are doing the clean-up job”

By an unknown photographer, ca. 1941–45

During World War II, the sight of women working in manufacturing was unique enough that the Federal Women’s Bureau, a part of the Labor Department, took hundreds of photographs of women workers, emphasizing their new roles and the precautions industry was taking to safeguard them.

National Archives, Records of the Women’s Bureau (86-WWT-33-58)