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The Best Resources On Japanese Internment In World War II

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'Guard Tower' photo (c) 2011, Josh Hawley - license:

Every January 30th is officially Fred Korematsu Day in California. Here’s some background on it from YES Magazine:

In 1942, 23 year-old shipyard welder Fred Korematsu refused to join over 120,000 West Coast Japanese Americans who were rounded up and taken to incarceration camps under President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Executive Order No. 9066. While Korematsu’s family was at the Topaz incarceration camp in the Utah desert, Korematsu was appealing his conviction. In 1944, the Supreme Court voted in a 6-3 decision against Korematsu, claiming the incarceration was justified for military reasons. It wasn’t until Nov. 10, 1983 that his conviction was overturned.

Fred Korematsu continued to speak up for civil rights throughout his life. He believed that “If you have the feeling that something is wrong, don’t be afraid to speak up.” That message remains alive in the mission and teachings of the Fred T. Korematsu Institute for Civil Rights and Education. In 2010, the state of California established January 30 as Fred Korematsu Day.

Also, the Day of Remembrance For The Japanese American Internment is on every February 19th, which marks the anniversary of the Executive Order by President Roosevelt authorizing that shameful event.

Here are my choices for The Best Resources On Japanese Internment In World War II:

The Fred Korematsu Institute has a full, and free, online curriculum.

World War II: Internment of Japanese Americans is a photo gallery from The Atlantic.

Here is a link to my Internment Of Japanese-Americans lesson on my older United States History class blog, which includes many resources.

U.S. official cites misconduct in Japanese American internment cases is a fascinating article in The Los Angeles Times discussing how the present United States Solicitor General is apologizing for the misconduct of one of his predecessors for his role in defending Japanese-American internment camps during World War II. During the war, he chose not to reveal a government study concluding that Japanese-Americans were not a risk to U.S. security.

Watch this video and do the three activities under “Explore.”

Look at these pictures from one of the camps.

Fairness Fighters is from PBS.

Life In A Japanese Internment Camp is from The Smithsonian.

A More Perfect Union is another resource from The Smithsonian.

These resources are from The University of California.

Digital History has a feature on the internment.

Generations of Japanese Americans were scarred by WWII internments is from The Sacramento Bee.

Executive Order 9066: Japanese American internment in World War II is a photo gallery from The L.A. Times (February 19th is the anniversary of the Order).

Colors of Confinement is a NY Times slideshow sharing rare color photos of a Japanese-American internment camp.

Indefinite detention: Echoes of World War II internment is from The San Francisco Chronicle.

Here’s a government film from World War Two:

Feedback, as always, is welcome.

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Author: Larry Ferlazzo

I'm a high school teacher in Sacramento, CA.

One Comment

  1. Don’t forget this site — much useful archival material:

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