Discover the History ofWWII Incarceration

120,000 Japanese Americans were unjustly incarcerated during World War II. Learn about this unprecedented denial of civil liberties and why it still matters today.

Explore Personal Stories

Learn about Japanese American history and the legacy of WWII incarceration by exploring personal stories from those who lived through it.

Promote Equity Today

History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes. Join us in putting the lessons of Japanese American WWII incarceration into action today.

2022 Densho Virtual Gala: Telling Our Next Story

Join us on November 2nd for an evening of art, conversation, and community as we celebrate our collective power to keep Japanese American history alive now and in the future. In addition to paying tribute to outgoing director Tom Ikeda, we’ll introduce Densho’s new Executive Director Naomi Ostwald Kawamura, highlight emerging artists, and honor the elders whose stories are at the heart of all that we do.

Densho Catalyst: History, Essays, & Opinion

Dive into hidden histories and learn why these stories matter today with the latest essays and opinions from Densho and other community voices.

View of barracks at Tule Lake concentration camp, with hills in the distance

Iron Fences and Pepper Pods: Four Poets at Tule Lake and their Stories 

Shootings by guards, martial law, divided loyalties among families,  intra-camp conflicts and antagonistic administrators, and mass renunciations of U.S. citizenship all contributed to making Tule Lake—initially one of ten War...
People walking between barracks at Tanforan Assembly Center.

Horse Stall Housing, Spoiled Ham, and Other Stories of Life in Tanforan

The second largest of the so-called “assembly centers” with a peak population of 7,816, Tanforan was built on the site of the Tanforan Racetrack in San Bruno, California, near the...
Six Japanese American high school students playing in a brass band in Rohwer concentration camp.

Four Nisei Jazz Stars You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

As the music genre that defined the United States for the first half of the 20th century, jazz had a deep impact on Japanese Americans. For many Nisei, music served...

Introducing Naomi Ostwald Kawamura

Densho is excited to share that Naomi Ostwald Kawamura will be our next Executive Director! Naomi brings a rare combination of experience in education, museums, nonprofit leadership, and a passion for Japanese American history and memory work.

Campu: A Podcast

Campu weaves together the voices of survivors to spin narratives out of the seemingly mundane things that gave shape to the incarceration experience: rocks, fences, food, paper. Follow along as hosts Hana and Noah Maruyama move far beyond the standard Japanese American incarceration 101 and into more intimate and lesser-known corners of this history.

Encyclopedia

Thousands of articles about the history of the Japanese American WWII exclusion and incarceration experience. Here are a few to get you started:

Guilty by Reason of Race (film)

Documentary film produced by NBC and shown nationally in 1972. It was the second major network documentary on the wartime removal and incarceration of Japanese Americans.

Katsugo Miho

Lawyer, judge, Hawai'i state legislator and World War II veteran.

War Relocation Authority

The federal agency created in 1942 to care for the 110,000 Japanese Americans whom the army removed from the West Coast during World War II.