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Camp Amache: A Japanese-American Relocation Center

Camp Amache: A Japanese-American Relocation Center

National Historical Site Designation

President Biden signed the Amache National Historic Site Act March 18, 2022, designating the Amache site in Granada, Colorado, as part of the National Park Service system. This designation will permanently protect the site for future generations and will help tell the history of Japanese American incarceration during World War II. Camp Amache will be the 424th park in the National Park Service system.


Former Japanese Internment Camp, Camp Amache, was hidden away for years, in part because no one wanted to remember this chapter of history. But thanks to local efforts, the camp’s history has come to light, its artifacts are being preserved, and the land on which it stood has become open to the public and filled with interpretive signage detailing life at the camp and honoring those who lived there.

The camp was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on May 18, 1994, and designated a National Historic Landmark on February 10, 2006.

In 1942, after the war with Japan had started, the United States condemned land southwest of Granada to build a Japanese Internment Camp, later known as Camp Amache.

Evacuees began arriving at Camp Amache on August 29, 1942, and by September 15, less than a month later, the total population reached 7,567. While Camp Amache was the smallest of the internment camps, it was the 10th largest city in Colorado at the time.

Contrary to a normal community elsewhere in the country, this new, temporary city, surrounded by barbed wire fences, had many restrictions. However, in order to live as decently and normally as possible under the circumstances, there were also community activities to keep the city in peace and harmony.

For education, there was a complete facility that included a preschool, elementary school, and high school. There were also athletic programs, talent shows, movies, artists and music groups, and more.

To maintain the health of Camp Amache residents, a hospital was erected and staffed with physicians, dentists, pharmacists, nurses, and optometrists.

On its nearly 10,000 acres of land, the camp had vegetable gardens, hogs, cattle, and chickens to fulfill the needs of the residents.

Self-government was also encouraged at Camp Amache, and through this, it experienced great cooperation between the residents and administration leaders, resulting in Amache being the most peaceful of the country’s 10 relocation centers.

On January 2, 1945, a mass exclusion order was lifted by the government, making it possible for all, except for a few excludes, to return to the West Coast freely.


Today, visitors may drive through Camp Amache on dirt roads and read covered kiosks detailing life at the camp, including images and maps.

A handicapped accessible cement walkway winds through what is left of one block. Although deteriorated through the years, barracks sold when the camp closed are being purchased and relocated to the site.

A Granada high school teacher began restoring the camp with students as part of a research project. They have since unearthed countless artifacts and brought the story of Amache back to life, much of which can be viewed at the Amache Museum in downtown Granada.

These high school students also maintain the camp’s cemetery. During the war, some of the men living at the camp joined the war efforts and fought with the 442nd and 100th battalion. By the end of the war, they were the most decorated battle unit. A large monument to fallen soldiers can be found in the cemetery along with the grave markers of children and a pagoda-style building.

Additional information and artifacts are available at the Amache Museum in Granada.

Recent Press About Camp Amache

‘Our ancestors’ wildest dreams:’ Young Sand Creek and Amache descendants explore shared history
KUNC | June 17, 2024

Granagh Sdchacheor and students help preserve Amache Historic Site
9 NEWS | June 11, 2024

‘Preserving Amache’: Japanese American returns to the WWII internment camp where she was once held
ABC News | May 31, 202

Amache Japanese Incarceration Camp Draws Crowds
NBC News | May 31, 2024

Roses from Camp Amache just bloomed at Denver Botanic Gardens
Colorado Public Radio | May 20, 2024

Former ‘Camp Amache’ now a national historic site
YouTube | May 19th, 2022

The Amache National Historic Site: How an abandoned prison became the newest US national park
BBC | May 7, 2024

10 historical sites to visit to learn more about Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Heritage
Good Good Good | May 5, 2024

Colorado’s Amache National Historic Site is America’s newest national park
CBS News | February 15, 2024

Amache National Historic Site Invites Public Input on Development of Foundation Document
RAFU Shimpo | May 11, 2023

A very special rose; Adding up the cost of new laws
CPR News | May 8, 203

Why Coloradans should remember Camp Amache’s History
AXIOS Denver | May 7, 2023

Students at the Granda Relocatno Center in Amache, Co,
Union-Bulletin | May 5, 2023

Amache Preservation Societ Receives Marjory Stoneman Douglas Award
The Prowers Journal | March 29, 2023

Amache’s history is still being uncovered more than 80 years later
KUNC | December 20, 2022

What’s next for Amache under the National Park Service
KUNC | December 16, 2022

Meet the educators that are doing ‘hero’s work’ to preserve Amache – all as volunteers
KUNC | December 15, 2022

Injustice Forever: The Story of Amache
9 News | July 9, 2022

Amache National Park a reminder of baseless imprisonment of Japanese Americans during WWII
Tucson Sentinel | July 2, 2022

Injustice Forever: The Story of Amache
9 News | June 26, 2022

Amache National Park a reminder of baseless imprisonment of Japanese Americans during WWII
Courthouse News Service | June 21, 2022

This National Historic Site Is the Newest Addition to the U.S. National Park System
Afar | June 9, 2022

This National Historic Site Is the Newest Addition to the U.S. National Park System
MSN | June 9, 2022

High schoolers preserved a Japanese internment camp for decades. Now, it’s a national park.
Upworthy | April 15, 2022

Preserved by Students for Years, WWII Internment Camp Becomes National Park
Good News Network | April 13, 2022

Biden signs bill designating a Japanese incarceration camp in Colorado a historic site
AsAm News | April 10, 2022

Japanese American Incarceration Camp in Colorado Receives Federal Protection
Smithsonian Magazine | April 6, 2022

Preserved by students, WWII internment camp becomes national park
The Christian Science Monitor | April 5, 2022

This Historic WWII Site Just Became Part Of The National Park System
Travel Awaits | April 5, 2022

Granada school teacher, students help enshrine Camp Amache’s legacy
Denver Gazette | March 27, 2022

This site of a Japanese Internment camp will become a US national park. Here’s how to visit
Lonely Planet | March 23, 2022

This Colorado World War II Site Is The Country’s Newest National Park
Travel Awaits | March 22, 2022

Biden elevates Colorado’s Amache Japanese-American prison camp as federal historic site
Denver Post | March 18, 2022

Colorado’s Camp Amache will become a national historic site after getting congressional approval
The Colorado Sun | March 15, 2022

Senate committee’s advancement of Amache bill earns nod from Rep. Buck
Colorado Newsline | November 24, 2021

Coloradan backs bill to add Amache to National Park Service system
9 News | November 18, 2021

Paul Zaenger: A Japanese-American internment camp has much to teach us about hysteria and racism
The Salt Lake Tribune | November 1, 2021

Amache National Historical Site Act Moves Forward In Senate
CBS Denver | October 6, 2021

Opinion: I survived a Japanese American internment camp. We cannot forget that history.
Washington Post | October 5, 2021

Opinion: As a 91-year-old survivor of Amache, a National Historic Site would give me hope
Denver Post | August 12, 2021

Amache national historic site bill passes U.S. House, heads to Senate
Colorado Springs Gazette | July 29, 2021

Amache internment camp preservation bill overwhelmingly passes the U.S. House
The Lamar Ledger | July 29, 2021

Bill To Make Amache Incarceration Site In Colorado A Historic Site Passes Committee Vote
CBS Denver | July 15, 2021

Exploring the gardens of Amache: Places of community, created through skill and resourcefulness
International Examiner | July 6, 2021

Stories from Amache
The Denver Post | June 5, 2021

American internment: Survivor shares memories of Camp Amache as fight begins to preserve site
The Denver Channel | May 30, 2021

Podcast: The fight to preserve Japanese American concentration camps
The Los Angeles Times | May 27, 2021

Visit Camp Amache; listen to the lonely wind
Colorado Politics | May 27, 2021

Japanese Americans Carry Trauma From WWII Internment Camp
The Denver Post | May 23, 2021

Legislation Would Make Amache a National Historic Site
The Rafu Shimpo | May 22, 2021

Gov. Jared Polis Expresses Support For Efforts To Name Camp Amache A National Park
CBS Denver | May 22, 2021

The Amache internment camp, as told by Japanese American survivors and descendants
The Denver Post | May 20, 2021

Polis calls for national park designation for Camp Amache site
Colorado Springs Gazette | May 19, 2021

Polis sends letter endorsing addition of former Japanese internment camp into NPS system
The Center Square | May 18, 2021

Solace From Seed: An Archaeologist Examines the Gardens of Amache
The University of Denver | May 13, 2021

4 Congressmen Join Colorado Teacher And Students To Make Camp Amache, A Japanese Internment Camp, A National Historic Site
CBS Denver | May 12, 2021

Colorado senators introduce another bill to make Amache part of National Park Service
The Pueblo Chieftain | April 26, 2021

Colorado Congressmen Introduce Bill To Add Amache Historic Site To National Park System
CBS Denver | April 23, 2021

U.S. senators from Colorado join effort to preserve ‘Camp Amache’
The Denver Channel | April 22, 2021

Advocates For Historic Designation Of Colorado Japanese Internment Camp Say It Would ‘Help Tell A More Complete Story of America’
CPR News | April 21, 2021

New Buck-Neguse Bill Would Make Amache Colorado’s Next National Historic Site
KSUT | April 17, 2021

Former Japanese internment camp in Colorado could become national historic site
Burlington Press | April 15, 2021

In wake of anti-Asian violence, Amache pushed as National Historic Site
The Journal | April 15, 2021

Amache Incarceration Site In Colorado Could Become New National Park
CBS Denver | April 15, 2021

Bill to make Amache camp a national park
Fox 31 Denver | April 15, 2021

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