National Park Service Announces $1.6 Million in Grants to Preserve and Interpret World War II Japanese American Confinement Sites

A historic photo of a Japanese internment camp and a contemporary photo of a similar building
Projects like the restoration of the Poston Elementary School Site I Library at the Colorado River (Poston) Relocation Center give glimpses into the life of the thousands of Japanese Americans that were sent to confinement sites during World War II.

Image courtesy of Cal State University (left), NPS Photo (right)

News Release Date: June 8, 2017

Contact: Kirby-Lynn Shedlowski, 202-208-6843

WASHINGTON – Today, the National Park Service announced $1.6 million in grants to fund preservation, restoration and education projects at several Japanese American confinement sites. The 14 grantees in four states and the District of Columbia will tell the story of the more than 120,000 Japanese Americans, two-thirds of whom were U.S. citizens, who were imprisoned by the U.S. government following the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor by Japan.

“The incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II is a painful episode in U.S. history, but one that future generations must remember and learn from,” National Park Service Acting Director Michael T. Reynolds said. “The National Park Service has an important role in telling this story through our stewardship of sites like Honouliuli, Manzanar, Minidoka, and Tule Lake and the support we provide communities and partner organizations through the Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program.”

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. Today’s announcement brings the current award total to more than $22 million.

The grants will fund a diverse array of projects that will tell this important story in a variety of ways. Using grant funds, the National Japanese American Memorial Foundation will enlist the help of high school students to develop video apps that will provide visitors to the Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism in WWII with a deeper understanding of the incarceration sites commemorated by the memorial. The Japanese American National Museum will use grant money to conserve more than 100 artifacts from the collection of Allen Hendershott Eaton, a folk art expert who acquired artwork created by incarcerees, which the museum will share as part of a traveling exhibition. 

Japanese American Confinement Sites grants may be awarded to projects associated with the 10 War Relocation Authority centers established in 1942 and 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 winning projects is below. For more details about these projects, visit

For more information on the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II, visit

Project Title
Project Site
Grant Award Amount
Bainbridge Island Japanese American Exclusion Memorial Association, Bainbridge Island, Wash.
“Exclusion Departure Deck, Bainbridge Island Japanese American Exclusion Memorial”
Eagledale Ferry Dock, Bainbridge Island, Kitsap County, Wash.
Densho, Seattle, Wash.
“Making Connections with the Japanese American Incarceration II: The Online Teacher Course”
Multiple Sites  
Go For Broke National Education Center, Los Angeles, Calif.
The Go For Broke Experience: Monument, Exhibition and Oral History
Multiple Sites
Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles, Calif.
“Contested Histories: Art and Artifacts from the Allen Hendershott Eaton Collection”
Multiple Sites
Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles, Calif.
“Digitization and Accessibility of JANM’s Moving Image Collection”
Heart Mountain Relocation Center, Park County, Wyo.; Rohwer Relocation Center, Desha County, Ark.; Jerome Relocation Center, Chicot and Drew Counties, Ark.; Granada Relocation Center (Amache), Prowers County, Colo.  
Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii, Honolulu, Hawaii 
“Directory of Japanese American Internees of Hawaii”
Honouliuli Internment Camp, Honolulu County, Hawaii and other internment sites in Hawaii
Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii, Honolulu, Hawaii 
“Hawaii’s Japanese American Wartime Evacuees”
Honouliuli Internment Camp, Honolulu County, Hawaii; Sand Island Detention Camp, Honolulu County, Hawaii
National Japanese American Memorial Foundation, Washington, D.C.   
“National Japanese American Memorial Foundation Digital Storytelling Project”
Multiple Sites 
New Mexico Chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League, Albuquerque, N.M. 
“Confinement in the Land of Enchantment Traveling Exhibit and Community Presentations”
Santa Fe Internment Camp (INS), Santa Fe County, N.M.; Fort Stanton Internment Camp (INS), Lincoln County, N.M.; Camp Lordsburg (U.S. Army), Hidalgo County, N.M.; Old Raton Ranch (INS), Santa Fe County, N.M.
Poston Community Alliance, Lafayette, Calif.          
“Restoration of the Poston Elementary School Site I Library”
Colorado River (Poston) Relocation Center, La Paz County, Ariz.
San Diego Chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League, San Diego, Calif.
“Never Forget—Our Lost Years”
Colorado River (Poston) Relocation Center, La Paz County, Ariz.
Tuna Canyon Detention Station Coalition, Pacoima, Calif.
“Tuna Canyon Detention Station Legacy Project”
Tuna Canyon Detention Station, Los Angeles County, Calif.
Visual Communications, Los Angeles, California
“Manzanar, Diverted”
Manzanar Relocation Center, Inyo County, Calif.
Wing Luke Memorial Foundation dba Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience, Seattle, Wash.
“Inspiring Future Generations: Friends and Supporters Who Helped Those Incarcerated”
Multiple Sites
Total $1,631,578
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Last updated: June 8, 2017

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