Remembrance 1
Virtual Tour Available


The Legacy of Executive Order 9066 in Washington State
  • Dates:
    Permanent Exhibition
  • Ages:
    All ages.
  • Where:
    Third floor
  • Tickets:

    Purchase admission tickets online or at the museum.

  • Accessibility:

    Mobility accessible. Exterior ramps provide building access, elevators access all floors in the building, and wheelchairs are available at admissions.

REMEMBRANCE: The Legacy of Executive Order 9066 in Washington State

Explore the intergenerational impacts and legacy of the incarceration of people of Japanese descent during World War II.

In this gallery, visitors will experience history through photographs, art, objects, letters, and film.  A significant part of this exhibition was sourced by working with individuals and families who were directly impacted by Executive Order 9066, including survivors and their descendants.

The Japanese community first set down roots in Washington State during the 1890s. Early immigrants took low-paying jobs in railroads, sawmills, salmon canneries, farms, and as domestic laborers. Within a few decades, however, these Washingtonians had become a vital part of our state with contributions to both culture and commerce.

It was not a life without conflict, however. Changing laws and the stirring of war with Japan caused strain for many Japanese Americans. The bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941 only intensified fear and frustration as uncertainty about the future increased. President Franklin D. Roosevelt issued Executive Order 9066 on February 19, 1942, authorizing the creation of concentration camps for Japanese American citizens. This event would mark the lives of Japanese Americans, their families, and their communities forever.

Introductory video

Watch the REMEMBRANCE video

Survivors and their descendants share their stories in this 14-minute video about the intergenerational impacts and legacy of the incarceration of people of Japanese descent during World War II.

Created by the Washington State Historical Society with Slager Fuj Creative Media (Seattle, WA).

REMEMBRANCE curriculum

New Curriculum: Primary and Secondary Education

WSHS is pleased to present a new curriculum with lesson plans to support primary and secondary educators in teaching the history of Executive Order 9066 in Washington State.



Contributing to the Gallery

The Historical Society continues to accept these materials for future additions to the exhibition and educational materials. Can you share your history? If you are interested in participating, please contact WSHS Lead Exhibitions Curator Gwen Whiting at 253-798-5927 or

Our thanks

We are grateful to the Advisory Committee and the community of participants who helped to create this exhibition. Thank you.

The REMEMBRANCE video and curriculum were generously supported by the Kip Tokuda Washington Civil Liberties Public Education Program via grant funding provided by the Washington State Legislature (RCW 28A.300.410), through the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI).

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WSHS exhibitions and programs are generously supported by Arts Fund, Columbia Bank, Humanities Washington, KNKX, The Murdock Foundation, and the Port of Tacoma.