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Manzanar National Historic Site

Manzanar National Historic Site: Japanese American WWII Internment Camp

Situated in Owens Valley at the foot of the Sierra Nevadas, this poignant memorial is the site of one of ten internment camps where Japanese Americans were wrongfully imprisoned during World War II. Over 110,000 people were incarcerated at Manzanar National Historic Site between 1942 and 1945. Discover their stories and their struggles when you visit this unique historic attraction.

This remote military-style camp is a little-known desert gem of the National Park system. Visit the well-preserved site to gain profound insight into the plight of Japanese Americans after Japan attacked the U.S. at Pearl Harbor in 1941. The only remnants of the actual camp are a few scattered buildings and sentry towers. But the most moving relic is a white obelisk known as the “Soul Consoling Tower,” which was carved by an incarcerated stonemason. It now stands as a stark reminder of human suffering. Nearby, you can see replicas of the internees’ cabins and read their first-hand accounts in the visitor center.