News Release

National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation to host National Day of Remembrance virtual events

A boy clings to a barbed wire fence looking out from a Japanese American incarceration site
Bill Takao Manbo holds onto the twisted wire fence surrounding the Heart Mountain concentration camp, where he was incarcerated from age two to age five. His father, Bill Manbo, Sr., took nearly 200 rare color photographs of life inside the camp.

Bill Manbo

News Release Date: February 10, 2022

Contacts: National Park Service,
National Museum of American History, 
Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation,

WASHINGTON – The National Park Service, Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History and the Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation will co-host this year’s National Day of Remembrance with live virtual events from February 18-20. The commemoration marks 80 years since President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s signing of Executive Order 9066, which led to the forced removal and incarceration of more than 120,000 Japanese Americans during World War II. The commemoration was made in coordination with Friends of Minidoka, Japanese American Citizens League, and the Japanese American National Museum. 

“This story of displacement and mistreatment parallels that of other communities in the United States. The National Park Service is committed to telling these difficult histories with accuracy and authenticity, so that we may heal as a nation,” said National Park Service Director Chuck Sams. “Through the work of our parks, partnerships and programs like this, we will continue to address the civil liberties and civil rights violations of the past, so we can ensure this never happens again.”

This year’s online commemoration is inspired by Secretary Lonnie Bunch III’s Smithsonian-wide 2020 initiative, “Our Shared Future: Reckoning with Our Racial Past” that speaks to the responsibility of the Smithsonian and all museums. The event’s theme, 80 Years of Reckoning, reflects the importance of the national dialogue on the important role museums and historic sites can play in the dialogue about race in America.

“With the recent increase in hate crimes and racial violence against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, collaborations and programs such as these as we mark the 80th anniversary of Executive Order 9066 are critical to righting the wrongs of U.S. history,” said Anthea M. Hartig, the National Museum of American History’s Elizabeth MacMillan Director. “As the nation’s flagship history museum, we remain deeply and humbly committed to documenting, preserving and presenting the powerful experiences and meaningful contributions of the Nikkeijin.” 

“The Day of Remembrance is not just a time for reflection, but a time to reaffirm our commitment to the fight for racial justice in America. The Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation is proud to join our many esteemed partners in marking this date and in vowing ‘Never Again’.” said Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation Executive Director Dakota Russell.

All events in this year’s commemoration will be live streamed on the National Park Service’s YouTube page. Learn more about the National Day of Remembrance and view the full schedule of events and speakers on the National Museum of American History’s website.

National Day of Remembrance: 80 Years of Reckoning 

Opening Ceremony 

Friday, February 18  

7 p.m. EST/4 p.m. PST/2 p.m. HST 

The opening online community event will set the stage for the weekend’s programming, featuring guest speakers from the White House, Smithsonian Institution, Japanese American National Museum, Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation and National Park Service.

Weekend Panel Discussions 

Saturday, February 19 

1 p.m. EST/10 a.m. PST/8 a.m. HST  

Racial Reckoning and Japanese American Museums 

3 p.m. EST/12 p.m. PST/10 a.m. HST 

Creating Paths to Justice, Healing and Renewal  

5 p.m. EST/2 p.m. PST/12 p.m. HST  

Day of Remembrances: Standing for Redress and Reclaiming History  

Sunday, February 20  

1 p.m. EST/10 a.m. PST/8 a.m. HST  

Restorative Justice and Healing in Preservation and Interpretation Through Community Engagement  

3 p.m. EST/12 p.m. PST/10 a.m. HST 

Historic Preservation and Engagement Through the Arts 

5 p.m. EST/2 p.m. PST/12 p.m. HST  

Passing on the Torch and Empowering the Community 

The National Park Service preserves six unique parks across the country to honor the people who were incarcerated and help tell a more complete story of the impacts and injustice of their experience, including Manzanar National Historic Site, Minidoka National Historic Site, Tule Lake National Monument, Bainbridge Island Japanese American Exclusion Memorial, Hono‘uli‘uli National Historic Site, and the Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During World War II. Learn more about these sites and stories on

About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 423 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at

About the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. Through incomparable collections, rigorous research and dynamic public outreach, the National Museum of American History seeks to empower people to create a more just and compassionate future by examining, preserving and sharing the complexity of our past. The museum’s doors are always open The public can follow the museum on social media on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. The museum’s traveling exhibition “Righting a Wrong: Japanese Americans and World War II” is currently touring the nation.

About the Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation. The Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation preserves the historic site where some 14,000 Japanese Americans were unjustly incarcerated in Wyoming from 1942 through 1945. Their stories are told within the Foundation’s museum, Heart Mountain Interpretive Center, located between Cody and Powell. For more information, call the center at (307) 754-8000 or email 

Last updated: February 14, 2022