New photos on Poston, 1943
Old Photos From the Los Angeles Times
by Scott Harrison
May 11, 2012
June 6, 1943: Los Angeles--Times staff photographer George Watson and staff representative Chester G. Hanson take a tour of the Poston War Relocation Center.
Starting on June 8, 1943, The Times published a five-part series on the Poston camp. Hanson reported in Part 1: "The Japanese Relocation Center at Poston is situated 16 miles south of Parker, Ariz., in the heart of the Colorado River Indian Reservation. The reservation borders the Colorado River for some miles."
"The first of the evacuees arrived from various parts of California on May 8, 1942. A little more than a year ago Poston, which got its name from an Arizona pioneer, was nothing but a portion of the reservation land overgrown with mesquite and other desert brush. Today it is a city of 15,916 men, women and children … crude in many aspects but still a city. It has, also, its agricultural phase."
"The project was laid out to accommodate 20,000 persons. At its peak it had 18,000. The majority of these Japanese came from Southern California areas–but many came from Central and Northern California points. The land set aside for the project covers about 70,000 acres."
"Eight photos by Watson – a full photo page – were published June 8, 1943, accompanying the first installment of the Poston series. Three additional photos were published with the remainder of the series. This photo gallery includes both published and unpublished images all taken by George Watson during his tour."
To view some of the photos, visit our other site, "Pictures" (top left side of screen), or click on this link: Poston in Pictures