Here’s a link to a thread on the Acoustic Guitar Forum.
Respected lawyer and freelance guitar journalist John Thomas uncovered the story and wrote a book on the fact that during WW2, women Rosie the Riveter types built Gibsons. Found a dozen of the women in their 80’s and told their story. Kalamazoo Gals, the book, is a hit.
Gibson had denied they built instruments back in the day - apparently to show full WW2 support. But now, JT was getting support from Gibson to promote the book and they were going to build a special set of Kalamazoo Gals guitars.
Then the door was shut and now Gibson won’t even acknowledge JT’s existence. This should be a PR victory for Gibson, champion of women workers and the war effort. But it seems to be just another sign that Gibson President Henry J is a jerk. ??? The working assumption I that Gibson’s lawyers have decided they should not change their original story of “no instruments built; no women workers” for some reason, even after they gave JT access to their WW2 ledgers which he photographed and published with their knowledge and support.
The linked thread has a link to the local NPR story that documents what has been going on. I know John Thomas. Although his name may raise a chuckle in the UK he is a good guy and very by-the-book in his documentation and scholarship around old guitars. He also writes artist profiles for my favorite guitar magazine, Fretboard Journal.
I am a huge fan of Gibson guitars - acoustics and electrics. I have bought mostly old ones, so used, but a few new ones. I doubt I will do that any more.