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World War II  Photo
Children being hauled by truck from Redondo Beach to Santa Anita Detention Camp. Note shipping tag on little girl. April 5, 1942.

-Clem Alberts photographer, courtesy of the National Japanese American Historical Society.


Mass Removal

From March 24 to November 3, 1942, the mass removal of Japanese Americans from the West Coast took place over eight months.
Unfinished Business
1:10 Min.


"Everything was so uncertain....my mother was sure that we were all going to go out to become farm laborers and that we would all be shot."

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Japanese Americans had no charges brought against them, there was no hearing; they did not know where they were going, how long they would be detained, what conditions they would face, nor what would happen to them.

Families were registered and given numbered tags to identify themselves and their belongings. They were told to bring only what they could carry. This included household and personal items they needed for daily living. Families were forced to leave their pets behind.

The sudden upheaval caused extreme hardship for many who were given as little as 48 hours notice to sell their possessions and to dispose of their property. Losses incurred during this time were estimated in the billions of dollars.

Text excerpted from "Historical Overview," Teachers Guide - The Bill of Rights and the Japanese American World War II Experience, published by the National Japanese American Historical Society and the San Francisco Unified School District. All rights reserved.

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