Posts Tagged ‘Japanese Americans’

The US Photographed Its Own WWII Concentration Camps

March 31, 2022

President Franklin D. Roosevelt passed Executive Order 9066 in February 1942, two months after Japan bombied Pearl Harbor. It empowered the US army to incarcerate 120,000 Japanese Americans in concentration camps during World War II.

In March 1942 the government created a new department, the War Relocation Authority, and hired photographers to document “resettlement” and life in the “relocation” camps, possibly to complement the work of the WRA’s Community Analysis Section. One of those photographers was Dorothea Lange, who had documented dustbowl migrants and other rural Americans for the Farm Security Administration. The WRA photographs were surpressed until 1972.

A Vox video by Coleman Lowndes.


Dorothea Lange’s WRA photos at the University of California

Dorothea Lange’s WRA photos at the US National Archives

The Densho Encyclopedia

Japanese American incarceration

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