Title: Letter to Governor Herbert Lehman from President Roosevelt, (denshopd-i67-00095)
Densho ID: denshopd-i67-00095

June 3, 1942

Dear Herbert:

In reply to your letter of May ninth enclosing a communication to you from Mr. Luigi Antonini, President of the Italian-American Labor Council, please be assured that I am keenly aware of the anxiety that German and Italian aliens living in the United States must feel as the result of the Japanese evacuation from the West Coast.

Will you assure Mr. Antonini that no collective evacuation of German and Italian aliens is contemplated at this time?

However, it may be necessary to require that certain individuals and their families be removed from local critical areas in order to provide necessary security. In doing this, we shall inform the individual privately and will try to mitigate hardship in every practicable way.

The War Relocation Authority is already administering a planned program of assistance in establishing new homes for those who have been evacuated. The War Relocation Authority will probably be asked to help any others who may be forced to move from their homes as a consequence of military necessity. Further, in dealing with our alien problem, we shall, insofar as possible, differentiate between those who are disloyal and those who are loyal to the United States.

The desirability of establishing alien Loyalty Boards is still under consideration. Mr. Antonini's suggestions indicate a great deal of constructive thought in seeking a solution to this perplexing problem, and I am glad to have his recommendations for consideration.

Very sincerely yours,

(Signed) FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT

His Excellency
Herbert H. Lehman,
Governor of New York,
Albany, New York.