THM Presents Japanese American Internment Program
The Tulare Historical Museum is partnering with Mission Oak High School to bring you a special program about the Japanese American internment and how the Tulare County Fairgrounds was once used as a temporary prison camp in 1942. The event is scheduled for June 23rd from 6-8pm in the museum’s Heritage Art Gallery.
This program is part of a larger project that was spearheaded by high school teacher MichealPaul Mendoza and his 11th-12th Cultural History of the U.S. class. When Mr. Mendoza was teaching his students about Japanese assembly centers and internment camps, they were dismayed to hear that the Tulare Fairgrounds, which was once an assembly center for 5,000 Japanese American evacuees, didn’t have a monument that paid tribute to the men, women and children who suffered countless hardships and indignities during this time of historical injustice.
The Mission Oak students put together a presentation for the CEO at the Tulare Fairgrounds, where the undertaking of creating a memorial was readily accepted. Shortly after, Mendoza reached out to the Tulare Historical Museum to further promote their cause. This included partnering with the museum to sell Tulare Assembly Center t-shirts designed by his students, as well as coordinating a program that will include a brief history presentation by Mission Oak students as well as a Q&A panel of surviving Japanese American internees held in prison camps in the Central Valley, including the “Tulare Assembly Center.”
This event is free and open to the public.