Living conditions

All of the camps were constructed according to the War Department's specifications, which included barbed-wire fences, guard towers, and armed guards around the perimeter. The camps were organized in "blocks" consisting of twelve to fourteen barracks, a mess hall, communal showers and toilets, laundry facilities, and a recreation hall. Each barracks was divided into four or six rooms with each room housing one family, no matter how large, and there was no running water. The furnishings that Japanese Americans found on their arrival were canvas cots, a potbellied stove, and a single bare light bulb. The thin walls offered little protection from the harsh weather, which ranged from 110 degrees in the summer to 25 degrees below zero on winter nights. The flimsy construction allowed no privacy and made normal family life difficult. Camp inmates improved their own living conditions by creating interior walls and partitions, constructing furniture from scrap lumber, and planting gardens.

Living conditions (957)

Related articles from the Densho Encyclopedia :
Arts and crafts in camp, Community analysts, Manzanar Children's Village

950 items
View of camp (ddr-hmwf-1-574)
img View of camp (ddr-hmwf-1-574)
"Dec 27-1944" as described on back, View of camp with Heart Mountain in background, Heart Mt. Block 24,25,29,30 intersection
Girl posing (ddr-hmwf-1-276)
img Girl posing (ddr-hmwf-1-276)
"Carrol Inouye (Carol) 29-3-F, April 9 1944" as described on back, l6 f5.6 1/5, PlusX DK20-37 D76-8
Collecting coal (ddr-hmwf-1-73)
img Collecting coal (ddr-hmwf-1-73)
"Men and women collecting coal between barracks" Jan 11, 1944
Baby (ddr-hmwf-1-287)
img Baby (ddr-hmwf-1-287)
"Aug 25 1944" f4.5 1/25 Superpan Press G3
View of camp (ddr-hmwf-1-569)
img View of camp (ddr-hmwf-1-569)
"Heart Mt. Block 15 from Golf Course area, Dec 27-1944, l21 f22 1/25 K2, Verichrome D76-50' "as described on back
Men in Barracks (ddr-hmwf-1-459)
img Men in Barracks (ddr-hmwf-1-459)
Two men resting on couch in barracks room
Baby (ddr-hmwf-1-267)
img Baby (ddr-hmwf-1-267)
"Ono baby, 29-19-A, Sept 23 1943 3:30 PM" as described on back, l5 f6.3 1/5sec SuperXX DK20 30min
Family Portrait (ddr-hmwf-1-593)
img Family Portrait (ddr-hmwf-1-593)
"at depot, Dec 30-1944, f6.3 1/25 PlusX DK20-47', D76-15' " as described on back, family posing together
Portrait (ddr-hmwf-1-627)
img Portrait (ddr-hmwf-1-627)
"Mar 11-1944" as described on back, young woman's portrait
Snow scene (ddr-hmwf-1-234)
img Snow scene (ddr-hmwf-1-234)
"Snow scene of camp looking through barracks"
Flowers (ddr-hmwf-1-86)
img Flowers (ddr-hmwf-1-86)
"Woman gardening beside barracks"
Men Posing (ddr-hmwf-1-634)
img Men Posing (ddr-hmwf-1-634)
2 men posing together with mess hall/latrines building and barracks in background
View of camp (ddr-hmwf-1-575)
img View of camp (ddr-hmwf-1-575)
View of camp with Heart Mountain in background
Camp Barracks (ddr-hmwf-1-204)
img Camp Barracks (ddr-hmwf-1-204)
"Looking south from Block 29 office May 3 1944" as described on back, l20 f19 1/25 G3, SuperXX DK20 36' D76 10
Baby (ddr-hmwf-1-268)
img Baby (ddr-hmwf-1-268)
"Dianne Oki (Birthday 10/30/1943) 24-21-F, Dec. 12 1943" as described on back, l5 f5.6 1/5 SuperXX DK20-40' D76-15'
Collecting coal (ddr-hmwf-1-79)
img Collecting coal (ddr-hmwf-1-79)
"Men and women collecting coal between barracks"
Couple on Steps (ddr-hmwf-1-452)
img Couple on Steps (ddr-hmwf-1-452)
"Hospital, July 31-1943, l20 f11 1/50 G3, Agfa Superpan Supreme, DK 20 21 min, C#2 4 An 27" as described on back, couple sitting on steps
Apartment room (ddr-hmwf-1-225)
img Apartment room (ddr-hmwf-1-225)
"Apartment room with clothes and furniture"
Woman and baby (ddr-hmwf-1-308)
img Woman and baby (ddr-hmwf-1-308)
"Woman with glasses holding a baby in her lap"
View of camp (ddr-hmwf-1-564)
img View of camp (ddr-hmwf-1-564)
View of camp with Heart Mountain in background
Latrines (ddr-hmwf-1-81)
img Latrines (ddr-hmwf-1-81)
"29-28 Latrine, Jan 25, 1944" as described on the back
Baby (ddr-hmwf-1-636)
img Baby (ddr-hmwf-1-636)
Young boy standing in entrance to barracks building
Ice Skating (ddr-hmwf-1-480)
img Ice Skating (ddr-hmwf-1-480)
Men, women, and children ice skating with barracks in background
Portrait (ddr-hmwf-1-624)
img Portrait (ddr-hmwf-1-624)
"Sachi Sugimura 27-14-C April 27-1944" as described on back