14 Photos That Illumine a Dark Chapter of U.S. History
Seventy-five years after his forebears were sent to internment camps, a photographer is recovering pieces of his lost past.
Seventy-five years ago, on February 19, 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066. The directive set the stage for the largest forced relocation in American history.
The sting of the Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor was still fresh, and there were rumors of an imminent invasion of the U.S. Pacific Coast. In response, the federal government took draconian action, ordering more than 110,000 people of Japanese ancestry—aliens and citizens alike—to evacuate the West Coast and move inland to 10 "relocation centers" scattered across remote parts of the country, far from populated areas and the war industry.
To deter any would-be saboteurs, the military confiscated all weapons, radios—and cameras. This led to "a gap in the Japanese American family