On the 74th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack, we are reminded of one of the most flagrant violations of civic liberties in American history: the relocation of nearly 120.000 Japanese-Americans in internment camps, two months after the bombing.

Vanport Mosaic is honored to partner up with Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center to keep this history alive. Before the war, Portland was home to a thriving Japantown. In February 1942 President Roosevelt, reacting to wartime hysteria, issued Executive Order 9066 which led to the evacuation and internment of all Japanese Americans, including those born in the U.S..
They were given only days to prepare for the upheaval of their life.

We will produce multimedia pieces based on the oral histories of those who returned to Portland after the closing of the camps. Housing discrimination forced them in limited housing options. Many moved into Vanport to rebuild their lives, just to lose everything once again when the flood wiped out the city in 1948.

Courtesy of the Pacific Citizen - Densho Digital Repository

Courtesy of the Pacific Citizen - Densho Digital Repository

We need YOUR HELP!

  • Please support our effort with a tax-deductible donation by 12/17/2015: https://www.oregonskitchentable.org/crowdfunding/vanport-mosaic

  • Help us finding the missing voices. We are looking for Japanese Americans who lived in Vanport willing to share their memories with us, as well as photos and resources to produce their digital narratives. Contact us at vanportmosaic@gmail.com