Manzanar Travel Guide

  • Manzanar
    by Yaqui
  • Manzanar
    by Yaqui
  • Things to Do
    by Yaqui

Manzanar Highlights

  • Pro
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    Yaqui says…

     A place for all to learn from. 

  • Con
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    Yaqui says…

     No services, other than town north and south. 

  • In a nutshell
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    Yaqui says…

     More than just rocks and dust! 

Manzanar Things to Do

  • Blue Star Memorial Highways & Byways

    These markers are a tribute to the men and women in the armed forces who have served, are presently serving and will serve in the future. This marker reads:Blue StarMemorial HighwayA tribute to the Armed ForcesThat have defended the United States of America Sponsored byOasis Garden Club of Indian Wells ValleyRidgecrest, CaliforniaCalifornia Garden...

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  • Medal of Honor ~ Sadao S. Munemori

    Be sure to read as many exhibits and displays. There is so much to learn from here, this one touch my heart especially.Sadao S. Munemori, born August 17, 1922 – April 5, 1945 was the only Japanese American to be given the Medal of Honor, after he sacrificed his life to save those of his colleagues by throwing himself onto a grenade to cover the...

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  • ID Tag Station

    This was an example of how the internees were suppose to attach these ID tags to their persona and bags. This is an educational tool to learn the stories of 14 internees by reading the back of the tag. Select a tag and look for the matching exhibit to learn more.The tag I chose was Family No. 2614. Sue Kunitomi: In December 1942, Sue decided her...

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  • Manzanar Cemetry

    This is a stunning monument and it is very tranquil at the cemetry especially with the beautiful mountain landscape in the backdrop.The Manzanar Cemetry Monument was built by Master Stonemason Ryozo Kado.Since 1969 the Manzanar Committee, a non-profit educational organization, has sponsored an annual pilgrimage to Manzanar. Former internees, their...

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  • MANZANAR Californian Historical Landmark...

    California Historical Marker Reads:In the early part of WWII, 110,000 persons of Japanese ancestry were interned in relocation centers by executive order No. 9066. Issued on February 19, 1942. Manzanar, the first of ten such concentration camps was rounded by barbed wire and guard towers confining 10,000 persons. The majority being American...

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  • Stonemason of Manzanar

    Before the war, master stonemason Ryozo Kado created elaborate and shrines for the Los Angeles Catholic Archdiocese. His trademark was creating faux wood with concrete. At the camp he created the camp most enduring structures, sentry post, hospital gardens, and cemetery monument. Each of the families donated fifteen cents to the construction of the...

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  • The Rock Gardens

    Although, this was suppose to stay as a military style camp. The internees needed to create places of solice and serenity. These gardens became a focal point for parties, weddings and many family or block celebrations. One such wonderful individual was Mr. Nishi who used his experience as a nursery owner to make beautiful gardens for all to enjoy....

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  • Touring the Historic Site

    Unfortunately, when Manzanar War Relocation Center closed in 1945, most of the buildings were sold as scrap lumber or moved to private property throughout the Owens Valley. Fortunately, the original sentry posts and auditorium did endure and what other remains is the foundations, concrete slabs, and garden features. The National Park Service...

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  • Theatre ~ Remembering Manzanar~

    "Remembering Manzanar" is a beautiful documation of the experiences of more than 10,000 Japanese Americans who were relocated here during WWII. Created for use at the Interpretive Center at Manzanar National Historic Site, "Remembering Manzanar" This film is beautifully done and captures the feelings of sadness, struggles, and hopes of the...

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  • Interpretive Center

    It was fortunate that this building was purchased by Inyo County and leased to the VFW, which hosted many local social events. In 1955 it was purchased again and modified by the Inyo County Road Department and served as their garage for forty years until it was purchased again in 1996 by the National Parks Service. Now the buildings serves as the...

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  • Manzanar National Historic Site

    When Japan’s attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941, plunging the United States into World War II. Racial prejudices and paranoia changed the lives of 120,000 men, women, and children of Japanese ancestry living in the United States. In 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 authorizing the Secretary of War to establish camps by...

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  • See the remains of a Japanese Garden

    While driving around the Manzanar site, you can see the remains of a few Japanese Gardens that were built by the camps internees in an effort to beautify an otherwise desolate location.

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  • Driving Tour

    There is a self-guided driving tour that takes you around the perimeter of the camp. Former building sites are identified by strategically-placed signs. On the west side of the camp you can visit the cemetary and the stone monument which has stood there for over 60 years. Visitors today still come and leave tribute items on and around the base. It...

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  • Visitor's Center

    The only original camp building, the gymnasium, has been renovated and now serves as the NPS visitor's center. Inside are great exhibits explaining the events leading up to the signing of the excutive order and the relocation of all persons of Japanese ancestry. Highlights include a scale model of the camp painstakingly built by former internees, a...

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  • CEMETERY

    One hundred and fifty internees died here in the camp. Of those, 15 were buried in the cemetery here, the rest being cremated. Of those, six remain, the other nine being removed to other locales by surviving family members. The memorial marker and Mt Williamson stand in mute memory of prejudices, hopefully, in the past.

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  • AUTO TOUR

    Dusty roads lead off into where thousands once lived. Roadside numbers correspond to explanations on the Park pamphlet, going farther towards explaining the old camp, its buildings and its history. A couple of old barracks appear to be in the process of restoration. The camp covered some 500 acres set up in 36 blocks within which 200-400 people...

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  • GYMNASIUM / MUSEUM

    The gymnasium is the only building remaining dating to the camp period except for the stone entry guard houses. The Historical Museum was opened here in 2004 and the exhibits inside go a long ways in telling the story of what happened here. A movie of about a half hour is a good place to reinforce lessons learned inside.

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  • See the remains of the camp and its...

    Almost all of the buildings at Manzanar were dismantled after World War II ended. However, you can still see some of their foundations and some of the camp's roads and walkways. There is a self-guided driving tour than you can take which takes to some of the remaining traces of the camp's buildings and infrastructure.

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Manzanar Favorites

  • Hopkid's Profile Photo

    by Hopkid Updated Dec 3, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: These are really fun and spark interest in the National Park Service system. The brainchild of a marketing genius, the purchaser can get a stamp from each of the NPS sites he or she visits. The collection of these stamps, similar to postal cancellation postmarks (which include the name of the park and the date visited) become fun to collect. It's a great way to get the kids (of all ages!) excited about going to different parks, monuments, seashores, etc. that are operated by the NPS.

    The passport itself is reasonably priced and the stamps are, of course, free. Each NPS facility has a stamp available at the visitor's center. If you don't see it just ask the ranger on duty. Some (e.g., Mt. Rushmore, Cape Hatteras Lighthouse) have special stamps with a depiction of the area/monument. Great fun!

    You can obtain an NPS passport at any park Visitor's Center or online at the National Park Service Store.

    You can find the passport stamp at the Visitor's Center. Further afield you can also get stamps at Devil's Postpile National Monument in Mammoth Lakes (approximately 2 hours north on U.S. 395 and west on California Highway 203) and at Yosemite National Park (approximately 3 hours north on U.S. 395).

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • National/State Park

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