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gem icon Manzanar National Historic Site [Suggest Edits]

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In 1942, 110,000 Japanese-Americans, mostly citizens, were forced from their homes and into concentration camps in the most remote parts of the United States. Not one was ever charged with any crime relating to aiding the Japanese during WWII. Manzanar is one of a dozen sites they were brought to, holding 10,000+ people, and its remains have been rehabbed into a museum for this terrible chapter of our nation's history.

The old rec center has been converted into the visitors center and theater. It's filled with many exhibits relating the history of how we ended up relocating so many people without due process, the various trials they went through, and the minutiae of their day-to-day lives. Restored barracks, mess hall, and basketball courts mark the start of a 3.2 mi driving tour (or running and cycling if you have time) around the grounds.

For a place with such a history the grounds are quite beautiful. Cherry trees blossom in spring and the Sierras loom to the west over the white obelisk that stands as a memorial to those who died in the camp. While the camp was operational the interred tended elegant gardens and ponds which are currently being excavated and hopefully will soon be restored.

Visitors are encouraged to explore the grounds, take photos, and hopefully walk away with a greater understanding of what happened and commitment to not let it happen again. Be respectful.

On the Road: Manzanar is 10 miles north of Lone Pine, directly off of Highway 395.

Gem Type: Historic Site

Shared by:
Dylan Payne

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Shared by Dylan Payne on Jun 2, 2019. All Page Views: 65. Last Month: 3.