On Wednesday, the United States Congress awarded its highest civilian honor to a group that had waited more than 60 years to be recognized for its service. [more inside]
JARDA: Japanese American Relocation Digital Archives is a collection of photographs, diaries, letters, camp newsletters, personal histories and a wealth of other material relating to the relocation and internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. The site is divided into four categories: People, the men, women, and children who were incarcerated. Places, prewar neighborhoods and wartime camps. Daily Life, eating, sleeping, working, playing, and going to school. Personal Experiences, letters, diaries, art and other writing by internees. Among the photographers hired by the War Relocation Authority was famed dust bowl photographer Dorothea Lange. 855 of her photos are on the site. Even though she was working as a propagandist many of her images captures a starker reality, for instance this picture of a glum little girl.
"The camp is in northern California, almost at the Oregon border. It has an almost mockingly poetic name, Camp Tule Lake. It as there in a barbed wire camp built on a wind-swept dry lake bed that I spent two and a half years of my boyhood after a year and a half in another internment camp in Arkansas...These pilgrimages back to a little remembered time in our history help enlarge my appreciation of the preciousness of our American liberty and my awareness of its fragility. They also deepen my understanding of the painful human price paid by such failures of our democracy." Star Trek's George Takei (the unflappable Mr. Sulu) revisits the internment camp of his racially-profiled boyhood.