Japanese internment, 1942

A primary source by J. L. DeWitt

Japanese internment broadside, May 3, 1942. (GLC06360)Responding to fears of Japanese spies within the United States, President Roosevelt signed an order authorizing the forced relocation and confinement of more than 110,000 Japanese nationals and Japanese Americans living in the West. This broadside, distributed in Los Angeles, ordered “all persons of Japanese ancestry” to assemble for transport to detention camps. The document gives specific directions to families about what they could take with them—household and personal items limited to “that which can be carried by the individual or family group.” Although some Japanese families had sympathetic friends who held their property and ran their businesses in their absence, most lost their homes and livelihoods as they followed government orders.

 

 

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