The Japanese American National Museum will present “Digging Amache: Revealing a Confined Community” on Sunday, May 22, at 2 p.m.
Archaeology is popularly associated with ancient remains, but the techniques of the discipline can be a particularly valuable tool for better understanding more recent, shadowed histories, like the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. Since 2006, the University of Denver (DU) has been engaged in archaeological research at the Granada Relocation Center National Historic Landmark, better known as Amache, on the high plains of Colorado.
A primary reason Amache received landmark status is the fact that there are many physical remains still there to bear testimony to life in the camp, including evidence of the camp layout such as roads and building foundations, internee modifications to the camp landscape, and objects scattered over the area or deposited in the camp trash dumps.
Led by Dr. Bonnie Clark, associate professor of anthropology, the DU Amache project is dedicated to researching, preserving and interpreting the tangible history of Amache. In this talk, Clark will discuss how archaeology is revealing the rich material resources of the site. Research on these remains yields surprising details about daily life in the camp, especially strategies internees employed to transform the stark environment of the camp.
By working with former internees and their families, DU students and professors have aligned with the communities engaged in remembering and preserving this nationally significant site.
The museum is located at 369 First St. in Little Tokyo. For more information, call (213) 625-0414 or visit www.janm.org.