Families of Japanese immigrants detained on Angel Island during World War II sought

The Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation (AIISF) is researching Japanese immigrants from Hawai‘i and the continental U.S. who were briefly detained on Angel Island during World War II by the U.S. Department of Justice. This research is being funded by the Japanese American Confinement Sites fund of the National Park Service.

In addition to the War Relocation Authority concentration camps such as Tule Lake, Manzanar and Topaz — located across the western half of the United States — an additional 7,000 Japanese immigrants and Japanese Latin Americans were arrested by the Department of Justice and detained in camps such as Lordsburg and Santa Fe, New Mexico, Missoula, Montana and Crystal City, Texas.

A number of these people — including approximately 700 from Hawai‘i and at least 70 from the West Coast — spent a few weeks at Angel Island before being sent to the WRA and Department of Justice camps.

“For most of them, wartime saw them being sent from camp to camp, separated from their loved ones who were either at home or relocated to WRA camps,” said a statement from the AIISF. “Others were also detained at Sharp Park, near Pacifica, Calif., before being sent to the DOJ camps.”

The AIISF is searching for any of these former detainees as well as their descendants, to try to learn more about their time on Angel Island. It will post the names of those it has identified so far on its Website and there will be a link at www.aiisf.org.

For more information, contact Grant Din at (415) 348-9200 x 11 or gdin@aiisf.org.

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