Mercantile Library Lecture Explores Life in a Japanese-American Internment Camp

Dr. Harald Y. Arai discusses his family's time spent in a 1940s internment camp

click to enlarge Inside the Mercantile Library - Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Inside the Mercantile Library
After the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor in 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order #9066, which authorized the military to imprison more than 120,000 West Coast Japanese-Americans in internment camps to hypothetically protect America from acts of espionage and sabotage.

According to the University of California, more than 60 percent of those incarcerated were American citizens, many were long-term U.S. residents and none were ever found guilty of espionage or sabotage.

Dr. Harald Y. Arai was one of those placed in a camp with his family. He will be a The Mercantile Library Thursday to discuss his experience in the camp with a “focus on the strength and perseverance exhibited by the detainees.”

6:30 p.m. reception; 7 p.m. program Thursday. Free admission; RSVP required. The Mercantile Library, 414 Walnut St., #1100, Downtown, mercantilelibrary.com.

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