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DU professor excavates Internment Camp in Granada, Colo.

Two former internees return to the site to help with archaeological dig

DENVER – Bonnie Clark, associate professor of anthropology at the University of Denver, will lead a field school June 21 to July 19 at Amache, the World War II U.S. Japanese American internment camp in Granada, Colo.

During the four-week field school, professors, students and two former internees will conduct surface surveys, excavate selected gardens and help the Amache Preservation Society, which operates a small museum. DU Professor Larry Conyers will also travel down July 1 to 3 to help students learn how to map the gardens using ground penetrating radar.

Carlene Tanigoshi Tinker was 2 years old when she entered Amache with her family from Los Angeles. Anita Miyamoto Miller was 1 year old when her family was forced into the Assembly Center in Merced, Calif. Both women will come to Amache July 7 to 17 to participate in the excavation, which is located in Southeast Colorado about 230 miles from Denver.

“I hope to learn more about my roots,” Tinker says. “The efforts to restore this Camp as well as others are important to make future generations aware of hysteria and what can result from racism and discrimination.”

There are two events that are free and open to the public:

Amache Tour Day – July 10, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
All are welcome to take a tour of the site, help dig a test pit and try to identify objects in the field lab. This active event is open to people of all ages, and special projects will be set up for children.

Amache Open House – July 17, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The excavation team will present their results of their field season to the public. Come hear about what they found and tour the museum and dig site.

Amache was one of 10 War Relocation Authority (WRA) camps where Japanese and Japanese-Americans were forced to live for more than three years following the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Although one of the smaller camps, Amache housed more than 7,000 people, two-thirds of whom were U.S. citizens. Amache, named a National Historic Landmark in 2006, was in operation from August of 1942 and officially closed Oct. 15, 1945.

Note to Editors: Please notify the media contact before making the trip to Granada, so we can give the team a heads-up. We can also make special arrangements for stations wanting to fly their helicopters down, but we will need advance notice.


 The University of Denver is committed to improving the human condition and engaging students and faculty in tackling the major issues of our day. DU ranks among the top 100 national universities in the U.S. For additional information, go to

  Kristal Griffith
Phone: (303) 871-4117


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