Oral History Of Pastor, Activist, Rev. Paul T. Nakamura Released – VIDEO

Rev. Paul T. Nakamura
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Mark Kirchner/Manzanar Committee

During the 46th Annual Manzanar Pilgrimage on April 25, 2015, we honored the Reverend Paul T. Nakamura, pastor of Lutheran Oriental Church in Torrance, California as the recipient of the 2015 Sue Kunitomi Embrey Legacy Award.

The award was named after the late chair of the Manzanar Committee who was also one of the founders of the annual Manzanar Pilgrimage, and was the driving force behind the creation of the Manzanar National Historic Site.

Rev. Paul, as he is known to his parishioners and just about everyone else who knows him, is a seminal figure in the Southern California Japanese American community, most notably for his involvement with the Manzanar Committee and the Manzanar Pilgrimage since its earliest days. He was also involved with the struggle for redress and reparations for the survivors of the World War II American concentration camps in which over 110,000 Japanese Americans and their immigrant parents were unjustly incarcerated, also from its earliest days.

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What’s New At Manzanar NHS: Construction On Historic Women’s Latrine Has Begun

Initial work on constructing an historic replica of the Block 14 women’s
latrine at Manzanar National Historic Site has begun. In this photo,
the historic concrete slab foundation is being reinforced with rebar
to meet current seismic standards.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Gann Matsuda/Manzanar Committee

INDEPENDENCE, CA — With the 25th Anniversary of Manzanar becoming a National Historic Site coming up on March 3, 2017, and with the much more significant anniversary happening just a few weeks prior—the 75th Anniversary of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s signing of Executive Order 9066, the Manzanar National Historic Site is working to bring two new exhibits online.

As reported on September 22, work is in progress on a classroom exhibit, which will be housed in the Block 14 barracks. But also in the works is the construction of an historic replica of the Block 14 women’s latrine, with some exhibit material coming after construction is completed on the structure.

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What’s New At Manzanar NHS: Classroom Exhibit Is Taking Shape

Lou Frizzel, shown here with his students, taught music in Manzanar’s school system during World War II.
Photo courtesy National Park Service

INDEPENDENCE, CA — February 19, 2017 will mark the 75th Anniversary of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s signing of Executive Order 9066, which resulted in the unjust incarceration of more than 110,000 people of Japanese ancestry, more than two-thirds native-born American citizens, into ten American concentration camps during World War II.

Coincidentally, just a few weeks later, Manzanar National Historic Site will mark its 25th Anniversary, having been declared a National Historic Site on March 3, 1992.

Over the last 25 years, the National Park Service has worked to preserve, protect and interpret the site so that visitors can learn about what happened at Manzanar, dating back to its indigenous inhabitants, the Owens Valley Paiute, through the World War II era, when a total of 11,070 people were incarcerated at Manzanar, which, almost overnight, became the biggest city between Los Angeles and Reno on Highways 14 and 395, as you head north from the San Fernando Valley.

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VIDEO: Buzzfeed Releases “A Trip To Manzanar”

Screen capture from “A Trip To Manzanar”
Courtesy Buzzfeed.com

On September 10, Buzzfeed.com released a video by Jen Ruggirello (whose grandparents were incarcerated during World War II), who, along with four others, including Los Angeles Japanese American activist Sean Miura, visited the Manzanar National Historic Site.

They documented their visit, their observations and what they learned in the video, A Trip To Manzanar, a while will serve as an educational, enlightening video, especially for those who have not been exposed to the Japanese American Incarceration Experience.

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