Public Affairs, The California State University

CSU Archives Collaborate for Historic Grant

by Elizabeth Chapin

Archives at Dominguez Hills, Fresno, San Jose, Northridge, Fullerton and Sacramento were recently awarded a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to digitize their collections relating to the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II.

Together, collections at the six campuses have around 300 linear feet of materials related to Japanese American internment including letters, photographs, and oral histories. The $40,000 grant will fund the first part a project to digitize this content and create a website where it will be available to scholars, students and interested citizens throughout the world.

“It is heartening to have the NEH acknowledge the scale and importance of the CSU’s collections,” said CSU Dominguez Hills Archives and Special Collections Director Greg Williams, who applied for the grant after discussing the idea with his campus counterparts.

Throughout the last half century, the archives, libraries, oral history projects and history departments at several CSUs have collected archival and manuscript materials, objects and media relating to Japanese internment.

“So many CSU campuses have this historic material because they were located near California’s internment camps and Japanese American communities ,” Williams said. “The new website ensures that this significant part of our history can be studied for generations to come.”

Learn more about the NEH grant project here and explore highlights of other fascinating collections throughout the CSU here.