In the 1920s, The Radium Dial Corporation meant work for girls who never had the opportunity before. Catherine Donohue initially took the job as a way to supplement her husband's income. With the possibility to make what seemed an extravagant sum of up to $8 per day, the job gave her and the other "radium girls" new-found confidence and independence at a time when women had only recently been granted the right to vote.
The job was simple – painting glowing numbers on watch dials. The women were told not to worry about possible health concerns. In fact, radium was nothing but beneficial to the body and used to treat a wide variety of ailments.
Over the years those luminous watch dials came to mean more than money to the women who painted them. But the radioactive paint also meant tough choices and the fight of their lives. Closely based on actual events, These Shining Lives follows the story of four women who find lasting camaraderie and the courage to stand up against the company that stacked the odds against them.