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Friday Educational Sessions

On the afternoon of Friday, July 31, Pilgrimage attendees will have the chance to attend two of the following sessions. All sessions will take place twice so everyone can catch their top two choices.

Japanese American Representation
in Pop Culture

In this panel discussion, performers and scholars will discuss how Japanese Americans are represented in the media today. Topics will include both depictions of the incarceration in pop culture and contemporary representations of Japanese American identity.

Authors on Incarceration

This panel discussion will feature authors of newly released books about the incarceration experience and experts on newly republished works. Topics will include the intergenerational trauma caused by incarceration and the connection between Japanese American soldiers and Jewish holocaust survivors during WWII.

Memories of Heart Mountain

Sam Mihara is a second-generation Japanese American who received the 2018 Paul A. Gagnon prize for best history educator. His parents were born in Japan and immigrated to the U.S. in the 1920s. Sam was born in the early 1930s and raised in San Francisco. When World War II broke out, the U.S. Government forced Sam and his family to move, first to a detention camp in Pomona, California, and then to Heart Mountain, Wyoming, where they stayed for three years. Sam’s family lived in a single room, measuring 20 feet by 20 feet, for their entire imprisonment, which he will discuss in his talk. He also explores the root causes and the legacy of Japanese American incarceration.

Restoring the Heart Mountain
Root Cellar

In 2018, the Foundation began restoring Heart Mountain’s sole surviving root cellar, a 300-foot underground structure designed and built by incarcerees. Join members of the cellar restoration team as they detail the history of the cellar and explain what goes into bringing this historic feature of the camp back to its original appearance.