The journey

The journey to temporary "assembly centers" was a difficult and disorienting experience. After gathering at designated locations, Japanese Americans were met by armed soldiers and transported in buses, private cars, and trains to sixteen temporary "assembly centers." When they arrived at their new homes -- often hastily refurbished fairgrounds and racetracks -- they were shocked to see barbed-wire fences, guard towers, and searchlights.

World War II (216)
Temporary Assembly Centers (177)
The journey (112)

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112 items
Mass removal (ddr-densho-36-16)
img Mass removal (ddr-densho-36-16)
Sumiko Furuta of Bainbridge Island, Washington, on a special ferry to Seattle. From Seattle, she will board a train headed for Manzanar Assembly Center, California.
Mass removal (ddr-densho-36-17)
img Mass removal (ddr-densho-36-17)
Ritsuko Terayama (left) and Sumiko Furuta as they leave the island on a ferryboat. (Lucille Galbraith, Bainbridge Island Japanese American Community (BIJAC). On March 30, 1942, Japanese Americans from Bainbridge Island became one of the first groups to be excluded, presumably because of their proximity to the Puget Sound Navy Yard (Terminal Island, near Los Angeles, …
Japanese Americans boarding train for Manzanar, California (ddr-densho-36-15)
img Japanese Americans boarding train for Manzanar, California (ddr-densho-36-15)
Japanese Americans from Bainbridge Island, Washington are being transported to the Manzanar Assembly Center, California.
En route to Manzanar Assembly Center (ddr-densho-36-8)
img En route to Manzanar Assembly Center (ddr-densho-36-8)
Japanese Americans from Bainbridge Island, Washington are being transported to the Manzanar Assembly Center, California. Manzanar Assembly Center became a WRA incarceration camp on June 1, 1942.
Letter to Kinuta Uno at Fort Missoula (ddr-densho-324-17)
doc Letter to Kinuta Uno at Fort Missoula (ddr-densho-324-17)
Correspondence from Kinuta Uno's wife and daughter discussing life at Pinedale Assembly Center.
Postcard send to Kinuta Uno at Fort Missoula (ddr-densho-324-26)
doc Postcard send to Kinuta Uno at Fort Missoula (ddr-densho-324-26)
Correspondence from Kinuta Uno's daughter about their arrival at Pinedale Assembly Center.
Administrative Notice No. 27 Transfer to Amache (ddr-densho-356-802)
doc Administrative Notice No. 27 Transfer to Amache (ddr-densho-356-802)
Administrative Notice No. 27 from Santa Anita Assembly Center contains information regarding personal belongings in storage outside of the camp remaining their until settled at Amache at which point individuals my request their items be shipped to camp at the WRA's expense. It also provides instructions regarding train travel to Amache including water conservation, cleanliness, and …
Evacuee Information Release No. 2 Baggage Instructions (ddr-densho-356-803)
doc Evacuee Information Release No. 2 Baggage Instructions (ddr-densho-356-803)
Evacuee Information Release No. 2 from Santa Anita Assembly Center informs internees about the types of baggage allowed and how each type will be transported.
Two letters to Yuri from Min Yonekura (ddr-densho-356-285)
doc Two letters to Yuri from Min Yonekura (ddr-densho-356-285)
Two letters to Yuriko Domoto Tsukada from Minoru "Min" Yonekura. Both letters stored in one envelope, unclear if they were mailed together or separately. Letter 5/11: describes forced removal, details items needed in assembly center to make barracks feel homey, food quality in the assembly center and general life there. Letter 2: discusses plans to move …
Last San Francisco family arriving at Tanforan (ddr-densho-151-158)
img Last San Francisco family arriving at Tanforan (ddr-densho-151-158)
Original caption: San Bruno, California. The last family off of the bus from San Francisco, have just arrived at this assembly center which will be their home until relocation centers inland have been established and are ready for occupancy.
Mother with infant arrives at Stockton (ddr-densho-151-251)
img Mother with infant arrives at Stockton (ddr-densho-151-251)
Original caption: Stockton, California. Young mother of Japanese ancestry arrives at Assembly center with 21 day old baby.
Issei woman boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-261)
img Issei woman boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-261)
Original caption: San Francisco, California. Friends and neighbors congregate to bid farewell, though not for long, to their friends who are enroute to the Tanforan Assembly center. They, themselves will be evacuated within three days.
Japanese Americans waving goodbye from train (ddr-densho-151-299)
img Japanese Americans waving goodbye from train (ddr-densho-151-299)
Original caption: Woodland, Yolo County, California. Ten cars of evacuees of Japanese ancestry are now aboard and the doors are closed. Their Caucasian friends and the staff of the Wartime Civil Control Administration stations are watching the departure from the platform. Evacuees are leaving their homes and ranches, in a rich agricultural district, bound for Merced …
Mother and children waiting in line (ddr-densho-151-223)
img Mother and children waiting in line (ddr-densho-151-223)
Original caption: Turlock, California. Families of Japanese ancestry arrive at Turlock Assembly Center. Evacuees will be housed later at War Relocation Authority centers for the duration.
Japanese Americans boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-205)
img Japanese Americans boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-205)
Original caption: Centerville, California. The bus has just arrived and these farm families of Japanese ancestry are being kept intact enroute to the Assembly center.
Japanese American family boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-144)
img Japanese American family boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-144)
Original caption: Byron, California. The bus which will take this farm family of Japanese ancestry to the Assembly center is almost ready to leave. Note identification tag on small boy.
Families arriving at Turlock (ddr-densho-151-455)
img Families arriving at Turlock (ddr-densho-151-455)
Original caption: Turlock, California. Families of Japanese ancestry arrived at Turlock Assembly. Evacuees will be housed later at War Relocation Authority centers for the duration.
Japanese American family boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-145)
img Japanese American family boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-145)
Original caption: Byron, California. This family of Japanese ancestry, evacuated from this farm in Contra Costa County, boards bus for Assembly center at Turlock Fairgrounds, 65 miles away. Evacuees will be transported later to War Relocation Authority centers where they will spend the duration.
Japanese Americans saying goodbye from train (ddr-densho-151-296)
img Japanese Americans saying goodbye from train (ddr-densho-151-296)
Original caption: Woodland, California. Evacuees of Japanese ancestry from this rich agricultural district are on their way to Merced Assembly center. This special train consists of ten cars.
Japanese Americans waiting for baggage inspection (ddr-densho-151-226)
img Japanese Americans waiting for baggage inspection (ddr-densho-151-226)
Original caption: Turlock, California. These evacuees of Japanese ancestry have just arrived at this Assembly center and are awaiting the inspection of their baggage. They will then be assigned places in the barracks to remain until they are transferred to a War Relocation Authority center for the duration.
White townspeople saying goodbye (ddr-densho-151-298)
img White townspeople saying goodbye (ddr-densho-151-298)
Original caption: Woodland, Yolo County, California. Ten cars of evacuees of Japanese ancestry are now aboard the train and the doors are closed. Their Caucasian friends and the staff of the Wartime Civil Control Administration stations are watching the departure form the platform. Evacuees are leaving their homes, ranches, in a rich agricultural district for Merced …
Child looking out of bus window (ddr-densho-151-174)
img Child looking out of bus window (ddr-densho-151-174)
Original caption: San Francisco, California. A young evacuee looks out the window of bus before it starts for Tanforan Assembly center. Evacuees will be transferred to War Relocation Authority centers for the duration.
Japanese Americans boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-149)
img Japanese Americans boarding bus (ddr-densho-151-149)
Original caption: Byron, California. The moment has come for these farm families of Japanese ancestry to board the bus that will take them from their homes and ranches to the Assembly center, 65 miles away.
Japanese Americans boarding buses (ddr-densho-151-143)
img Japanese Americans boarding buses (ddr-densho-151-143)
Original caption: Byron, California. Farm families of Japanese ancestry boarding buses for Turlock Assembly center 65 miles away. An official of the Wartime Civil Control Administration is checking the families into the bus by number.
Japanese American crying as train leaves station (ddr-densho-151-302)
img Japanese American crying as train leaves station (ddr-densho-151-302)
Original caption: Woodland, California. Ten cars of evacuees of Japanese ancestry are now aboard and the doors are closed. Their Caucasian friends and the staff of the Wartime Civil Control Administration stations are watching the departure form the platform. Evacuees are leaving their homes and ranches, in a rich agricultural district, bound for Merced Assembly center …
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