Japanese American Internment History Grants Awarded

The All Camps Consortium presented Director Jarvis a proclamation recognizing his work in support of telling the story of confinement sites on May 12, 2016, in Washington, DC. Photo: NPS.
The All Camps Consortium presented Director Jarvis a proclamation recognizing his work in support of telling the story of confinement sites on May 12, 2016, in Washington, DC. Photo: NPS.

The US National Park Service Awards $2.8 Million in Grants to Preserve and Interpret World War II Japanese American Confinement Sites

Released by Jeremy Barnum

National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis yesterday announced $2.8 million in Japanese American Confinement Sites grants to fund educational programs, preservation projects, memorials, and exhibits. The 15 projects in five U.S. states will tell the story of the more than 120,000 Japanese Americans, two-thirds of whom were US citizens, who were imprisoned by the US government following the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.

Jarvis announced the grants at a reception for the All Camps Consortium hosted by the Embassy of Japan in Washington, DC on May 12, 2016.

“The National Park Service is dedicated to preserving the memory of the Japanese Americans who were incarcerated during World War II,” Jarvis said. “The inclusion of sites like Honouliuli, Manzanar, Minidoka, and Tule Lake in the National Park System and the support for the Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program reflect our nation’s commitment to remember and learn from this shameful episode in our past.”

President Obama designated Honouliuli Internment Camp as Honouliuli National Monument in February 2015 to share the stories of those who were unjustly held there during World War II.

The grants announcement comes as the National Park Service pays tribute to the generations of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders who have enriched America’s history as part of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month throughout May. The National Park Service is also preparing a theme study to inspire Americans to discover the story of America’s Asian and Pacific Island heritage and to help those seeking National Historic Landmark or National Register of Historic Places designation for historic places linked to the Asian American and Pacific Islanders experience in the United States. The theme study’s introductory chapter will be published soon.

Congress established the Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program in 2006, authorizing a total of $38 million in funding for the life of the program. Yesterday’s announcement of $2.8 million brings the current award total to more than $21 million.*

The grants will be used for projects that include a memorial to honor the 8,000 Japanese Americans who were imprisoned at the Tanforan Assembly Center, built on a former horse racing track in California; exhibitions about the Rohwer and Jerome camps in Arkansas; and the development of high school curriculum to teach students about the lesser-known Department of Justice camps, such as Fort Lincoln in North Dakota and Fort Stanton in New Mexico.

Japanese American Confinement Sites grants may be awarded to projects associated with the 10 War Relocation Authority centers established in 1942 and the more than 40 additional confinement sites.

The program’s mission is to teach future generations about the injustice of the World War II confinement of Japanese Americans and to inspire commitment to equal justice under the law. Successful proposals are chosen through a competitive process that requires applicants to match the grant award with $1 in non-federal funds or “in-kind” contributions for every $2 they receive in federal money.

A list of the projects receiving awards is below. For further project details, visit www.nps.gov/JACS.

For more information on the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II visit www.nps.gov/subjects/worldwarii/internment.htm


Project Title

Project Site

Grant Award Amount
Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation, San Francisco, Calif.

“Developing Permanent Exhibits about Japanese Internment on Angel Island for its Pacific Coast Immigration Center”

Angel Island, North Garrison of Fort McDowell (INS and U.S. Army), Marin County, Calif.


Central Arkansas Library System, Little Rock, Ark.

“Exhibitions and Educational Outreach on the Confinement Camps at Rohwer and Jerome, Arkansas”

Jerome Relocation Center, Chicot and Drew Counties, Ark.;Rohwer Relocation Center, Desha County, Ark.


Densho, Seattle, Wash.

“Names Registry and Thesaurus of the Japanese American Experience”

Multiple Sites


Densho, Seattle, Wash.

“Saving and Preserving Confinement Sites Materials from Personal Collections”

Multiple Sites


Friends of Minidoka, Twin Falls, Idaho

“Minidoka Legacy Memorial Interpretive Exhibit Project”

Minidoka Relocation Center, Jerome County, Idaho


Go For Broke National Education Center, Los Angeles, Calif.

“Communities of Compassion and Courage”

Multiple Sites


Heart Mountain, Wyoming Foundation, Powell, Wyo.

“The History of the Heart Mountain Fair Play Committee and Resister Movement Project”

Heart Mountain Relocation Center, Park County, Wyo.


Japanese American Citizens League, Pacific Southwest District, Los Angeles, Calif.

“Bridging Communities Fellowship Program”

Manzanar Relocation Center, Inyo County, Calif.;Tuna Canyon Detention Station (INS), Los Angeles County, Calif.


Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles, Calif.

“The Eaton Collection Project, Phase I”

Multiple Sites


Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles, Calif.

“Meet the Yamashitas:An Interactive Website”

Multiple Sites, including Rohwer Relocation Center, Desha County, Ark.;Fort Missoula Internment Camp (INS), Missoula County, Mont.;Santa Fe Internment Camp (INS), Santa Fe County, N.M.;and Camp Livingston(U.S. Army), Rapides Parish and Grand Parish, La.


Midpeninsula Community Media Center, Inc., Palo Alto, Calif.

“50 Objects/50 Stories of the Japanese American Incarceration”

Multiple Sites


National Japanese American Historical Society, Inc., San Francisco, Calif.

“The Untold Stories: The Department of Justice Internment Teacher Education Project”

Multiple Sites, including Crystal City Internment Camp (INS), Zavala County, Texas;FortLincoln Internment Camp (INS), Burleigh County, N.D.;Kooskia Internment Camp (INS), Idaho County, Idaho;and Santa Fe Internment Camp (INS), Santa Fe County, N.M.


Tanforan Assembly Center Memorial Committee, Richmond, Calif.

“Tanforan Assembly Center Memorial

Tanforan WCCA Assembly Center, San Mateo County, Calif.


Valley Public Television, Inc. dba Valley PBS, Fresno, Calif.

“Silent Sacrifice: The Story of Japanese American Incarceration and Beyond in California’s San Joaquin Valley”

Merced WCCA Assembly Center, Merced County, Calif.;Fresno WCCA Assembly Center, Fresno County, Calif.;Pinedale WCCA Assembly Center, Fresno County, Calif.;and Tulare WCCA Assembly Center, Tulare County, Calif.


Wing Luke Memorial Foundation dba Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience, Seattle, Wash.

“Inspiring Future Generations: Challengingthe Forced Incarceration through Acts of Resistance”

Multiple Sites




More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 411 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit www.nps.gov, on Facebookwww.facebook.com/nationalparkservice, Twitter www.twitter.com/natlparkservice, and YouTube www.youtube.com/nationalparkservice.

For more information on the National Park Service, visit www.nps.gov.

* Ed. Note: This is the math as released by the NPS.

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About Kay Whatley 2309 Articles
Kay Whatley serves as Editor and Reporter with The Grey Area News. Kay is a published author with over 20 years of experience in the publishing industry. Kay Whatley is wife to Frank Whatley, founder of The Grey Area™ newspaper and The Grey Area News online news website.