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What You Can Learn From Internment Records

In 1942 the United States government responded to growing national fears of suspected Japanese spying by signing Executive Order 9066. This allowed the army to take anyone of Japanese ancestry from their home and place them in temporary camps called “Civilian Assembly Centers.”

The War Relocation Authority was created to care for those who had been relocated, and 10 “Relocation Centers” across 7 states were created: Gila River, Granada, Heart Mountain, Jerome, Manzanar, Minidoka, Poston, Topaz, Tule, and Rohwer.

Between 1942 when the first camp opened, and 1946 when the last camp closed, over 127,000 Japanese Americans were held along with over 14,500 German and Italian Americans. These records can help you learn more about the people who endured this dark time in American history.

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