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WWI’s “Hello Girls” were the lean, mean, switchboard-operating machines the frontline needed

A century ago, as the US was deep into fighting WWI, General "Black Jack" Pershing issued an urgent call to American women to volunteer for a new unit with the US Army Signal Corps.

More than 200 women from across the nation responded, including women from Michigan. They became known as "The Hello Girls."

Michigan History Center’s Rachel Clark joined Stateside to tell us more about this special WWI unit.

Listen above for the full conversation to hear what these women were tasked with abroad, what it took to be a “Hello Girl,” how the American government and the public welcomed them home, and what it took to be officially recognized as part of the military after the war ended.

This segment is produced in partnership with theMichigan History Center.

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