Located in Wilmington, North Carolina, the shipyard was active between 1941 and 1946, having been founded to cater to the need for military vessels during World War II. North Carolina Shipbuilding Company built 243 ships, 54 of which were subsequently used by the U.S. Navy. The majority of military ships were attack cargo ships, amphibious force flagships, and ammunition ships. When ship production was at its peak, the shipyard had up to 21,000 employees, all of whom were heavily exposed to asbestos. By moving, cutting, sanding, and drilling holes into asbestos products, workers would create asbestos dust, which they would inevitably inhale and ingest. This poses former employees of North Carolina Shipbuilding Company at high risk for lung disease.