"Kalamazoo Gals" Signing, Discussion and Performance

Come meet the musician/writer John Thomas author of the first ever complete and accurate account of the Gibson Guitar Company's WWII covert production line.


Given raw material restrictions during WWII, the famed Kalamazoo-based Gibson guitar company--like many manufacturers--resorted to the scrap heap, and a “nearly all” female workforce. But, the company denied in public that it was doing what it must do both to survive the cataclysmic challenge of the times and to try to maintain its reputation as a maker of fine musical instruments. So, while the company commissioned advertising art promising that it would await the return of “the boys” before producing another instrument, it still produced and shipped out some 10,000 'girl-made' guitars. It graced the headstock of each of those guitars with a small, golden, silk-screened banner emblazoned with “Only a Gibson is Good Enough.” When those boys did return home to retake most of the jobs held by women, good enough apparently became insufficient and the banner disappeared.

Listen to John's great interview with NPR here

Event date: 
Friday, March 22, 2013 - 6:00pm to 7:30pm
Event address: 
3019 Oakland Dr
49008 Kalamazoo