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National Park Service to preserve WW II Japanese-American confinement sites
National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis today announced more than $1.3 million in grants to help preserve and interpret the sites where more than 120,000 Japanese Americans – two-thirds of them U.S. citizens – were imprisoned during World War II.
“Our national parks tell the stories not only of American success, but of our failures such as the dark history of the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II,” Jarvis said. “We make these grants so that present and future generations are reminded what happened and how the people survived these camps. And we make these grants to demonstrate our nation’s commitment to the concept of ‘equal justice under law’ that grew out of these and other civil rights experiences.”
The 14 grant projects include:
Creation of a memorial to honor Japanese Americans forcibly removed from Juneau, Alaska and sent to the Camp Lordsburg Internment Camp in New Mexico and later to the Minidoka Relocation Center in Idaho
- Installation of exhibits at the San Bruno Bay Area Rapid Transit station featuring photographs by Dorothea Lange and Paul Kitagaki telling the story of forced relocation of California Bay Area Japanese Americans
- A plan for acquisition and preservation of an abandoned root cellar, one of the few remaining original structures at the former Heart Mountain site internment site in Wyoming
- A kiosk in a Chandler, Arizona park that focuses on daily life and the importance of baseball at the Gila River Internment Camp
- An exhibit at the Los Angeles Go For Broke National Education Center, “Divergent Paths to a Convergent America: A 360 Degree Perspective of the Japanese American Response to WWII”
The Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program supports projects in seven states. Today’s grants bring grant totals to $12 million of the $38 million Congress authorized when it established the Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program in 2006.
Grants from the Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program may go to the 10 War Relocation Authority camps established in 1942 or to more than 40 other sites, including assembly, relocation, and isolation centers. The goal of the program is to teach present and future generations about the injustice of the World War II confinement and inspire a commitment to equal justice under the law. These are competitive grants with required matches – a dollar of non-federal funds or $2 in-kind contributions for every grant dollar.
A full list of the funded projects follows. For more details about these projects, visit: http://www.nps.gov/hps/hpg/JACS/.