Japanese Internment Camp Monument.

Japanese Internment Camp Monument

Field review by the editors.

Poston, Arizona

In the summer of 1942, scant months after the Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, almost 18,000 Japanese-Americans from California, Oregon, and Washington were shipped to what was euphemistically called a "relocation center" but was more like a prison camp. Fifty years later, no trace of the old camp remained, but its survivors dedicated a monument to mark the spot. It was erected in cooperation with the four Colorado River Indian Tribes who own the surrounding land (and who had their own bad memories of forced relocation). The monument resembles a giant gun barrel pointing skyward out of the top of a small pagoda.

Plaques on the pagoda give the flavor of camp life, recalling "the relentless summer sun" and "blinding dust storms" and "chilling winds" in winter that "easily penetrated the walls of the flimsily built tar paper barracks," as well as "infrequent but torrential rains" that quickly turned the camp "into a slippery, treacherous, and muddy quagmire." Photos of the camp, etched into the metal plaques, have already been bleached invisible by the desert sun.

On a happy note, one plaque explains that the infrastructure that was built to banish the Japanese made possible post-war irrigation and hydroelectric projects that make this little corner of Arizona one of the few places in the state that can grow crops.

Japanese Internment Camp Monument

Address:
Hwy 1, Poston, AZ
Directions:
I-10 to exit 1, then north on Hwy 1 to mile marker 26. On the south edge of town, on the east side of Hwy 1.
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Great Blythe IntagliosGreat Blythe Intaglios, Blythe, CA - 15 mi.
Pair of Chickens, BisonPair of Chickens, Bison, Vidal Junction, CA - 17 mi.
Secret Armored Military TributeSecret Armored Military Tribute, Bouse, AZ - 23 mi.
In the region:
Hi Jolly's Tomb, Quartzsite, AZ - 24 mi.

More Quirky Attractions in Arizona

Stories, reports and tips on tourist attractions and odd sights in Arizona.

Explore Thousands of Unique Roadside Landmarks!

Strange and amusing destinations in the US and Canada are our specialty. Start here.
Use RoadsideAmerica.com's Attraction Maps to plan your next road trip.

November 27, 2014

My Sights

Create Your Own Bizarre Road Trips!

Try My Sights

Roadside America app
Roadside Presidents app

Arizona Latest Tips and Stories

Latest Visitor Tips

Sight of the Week

Sight of the Week

Alabama's Housewife-Whacking Meteorite, Tuscaloosa, Alabama (Nov 24-30, 2014)

SotW Archive

USA and Canada Tips and Stories

Latest Visitor Tips

Sightings. Arrives without warning. Leaves no burn marks. A free newsletter from RoadsideAmerica.com. Subscribe now!
RoadsideAmerica.com Hotel & Motel Finder

Special online rates for hotels & motels.

Nearby Hotels and Motels, Poston, Arizona

Nightly rates found:

Book Online Now