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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • History
  • Scope and Content
  • Indexing Terms
  • Items Removed from Collection
  • Related Material

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Manzanar War Relocation Center records,
    Date (inclusive): 1942-1946
    Collection number: 122
    Creator: Manzanar War Relocation Center
    Extent: 68 boxes (34 linear ft.) 39 oversize boxes
    Abstract: The Manzanar War Relocation Center was located in the Owens Valley in Central California. The United States Army initially established the camp as the Owens Valley Reception Center under the management of the Wartime Civil Control Administration (WCCA), March-May 1942. On June 1, 1942, Manzanar was reconstituted as a War Relocation Authority (WRA) center. Its peak population was 10,121, and the majority of its internees came from pre-World War II Japanese American communities in the Los Angeles basin. The collection consists of files collected and maintained by Ralph Palmer Merritt (Director of the Japanese Relocation Center at Manzanar, California) including files of the Wartime Civil Control Administration (WCCA), the War Relocation Authority (WRA) records and correspondence from April 1942-December 1945, a history of the Manzanar Center (5 volumes), daily records of the Block Managers, Ralph Merritt's office files, and a two volume index of all evacuees at Manzanar. There are also books, clippings, copies of the Congressional Record, reprints of committee hearings, and magazines documenting the history of Japanese and Japanese Americans in the United States and their internment and military service, photographs and photographic negatives documenting activities and people at Manzanar, and approximately 170 photographs by Ansel Adams of the Manzanar War Relocation Center on 14 x 18 inch mats. The collection also contains copies of various newspapers and printed materials such as the Manzanar Free Press.
    Language: Finding aid is written in English.
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library Special Collections.
    Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
    Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.

    Administrative Information

    Restrictions on Access

    Open for research. STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact UCLA Library Special Collections for paging information.

    Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

    Property rights to the physical object belong to UCLA Library Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.
    Surrogate copies of some publications in Box 59 are available in UCLA Library Special Collections. Originals not available for consultation due to fragile condition.

    Digital Representations Available

    Digital image files of documents in the Manzanar Collection were made on an Epson Expression 836XL flatbed scanner as 24-bit RGB uncompressed TIFF files. Color-corrected derivatives for the MoAII viewer were created from these in Photoshop 5.5.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Ralph Palmer Merritt, 1946.

    Funding

    Finding aid and digital representations of archival material funded in part by a grant from the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA).

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Manzanar War Relocation Center records (Collection 122). Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

    UCLA Catalog Record ID

    UCLA Catalog Record ID: 2221125 

    History

    The Manzanar War Relocation Center was located in the Owens Valley in Central California; the site was used by Paiute-Shoshone Indians for centuries until it became a Euro-American fruit-growing settlement, 1910-35; the United States Army initially established the camp as the Owens Valley Reception Center under the management of the Wartime Civil Control Administration (WCCA), March-May 1942; on June 1, 1942, Manzanar was reconstituted as a War Relocation Authority (WRA) center; its peak population was 10,121, and the majority of its internees came from pre-World War II Japanese American communities in the Los Angeles basin; Manzanar was declared a state historical landmark in 1972, a national historical landmark in 1985, and a National Historic Site (managed by the National Park Service administration under the United States Department of the Interior) in 1992.

    Scope and Content

    Collection consists of files collected and maintained by Ralph Palmer Merritt, Director of the Japanese Relocation Center at Manzanar, California. Includes files of the Wartime Civil Control Administration (WCCA) and the War Relocation Authority (WRA) records and correspondence from April 1942-December 1945. Also includes a history of the Manzanar Center (5 volumes), daily records of the Block Managers, Ralph Merritt's office files, and a two volume index of all evacuees at Manzanar. Books, clippings, copies of the Congressional Record, reprints of committee hearings, and magazines document the history of Japanese and Japanese Americans in the United States and their internment and military service. Approximately 100 photographs and 400 photographic negatives in the collection document activities and people at Manzanar. Includes approximately 170 photographs by Ansel Adams of the Manzanar War Relocation Center on 14 x 18 inch mats. The collection also contains copies of various newspapers and printed materials such as the Manzanar Free Press.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

    Subjects

    Manzanar War Relocation Center--Archives.
    Japanese Americans--Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945--Archival resources.
    negatives.
    Photographs.
    Merritt, Ralph Palmer, 1883-1963.
    Adams, Ansel, 1902- .

    Items Removed from Collection

    • Extra copies of publications and printed material about Japanese in the United States, in California, and in the Armed Services, and about Japanese relocation. These have been filed in the California Ephemera Collection (Collection 200)  . See “Japanese in America.”
    • The broadsides of the Civilian Exclusion Orders were a gift of the Bancroft Library, 1969, as were the smaller duplicates.

    Note

    The broadsides are in the Manzanar War Relocation Center records (Collection 122)  , Portfolio 74, while the duplicate smaller set is filed in the California Ephemera collection (Collection 200)  . See “Japanese in California.”
    Both collections are available at UCLA Library Special Collections.

    Related Material

    Title: Japanese American Research Project collection of material about Japanese in the United States (Collection 2010)  .
    Available at Library Special Collections, UCLA.
    Title: Japanese American Research Project - Fading Footsteps of the Issei (Collection 2010)  .
    Available at Library Special Collections, UCLA.