Post written by Chris Brusatte, Exhibit Manager at Go For Broke National Education Center
As a public historian, I am always excited when history is shared with the wider public. Historical photographs, videos, and documents should always be shared with as many people as possible. History belongs to the public, not to dusty old boxes and forgotten attics.
That is why I am so excited about the National Digital Archives of Japanese American Military Service. Finally, through our efforts, the history of the courageous Japanese American soldiers of World War II can be shared far and wide. Here are just a few of the people who will benefit:
Students: Grade school, high school, and college students will now have thousands of photographs and thousands of hours of oral history footage to use for class projects. Never before have they had so much interesting primary source information at their fingertips!
Teachers: Likewise, teachers will now have easy access to an almost unlimited supply of primary sources. This fits perfectly with the latest state and federal curriculum guidelines, which emphasize the use of original materials.
Scholars: Professional historians and researchers will now have digital access to thousands of personal photographs and first-hand accounts.
Authors and Filmmakers: With all of these new resources digitized, authors and filmmakers will be able to create countless new books and videos highlighting the Japanese American soldier experience.
Families: Perhaps most importantly, the families of the veterans will finally have easy access to their stories. Children and grandchildren will be able to explore the courageous histories online, learning firsthand the heroic stories of their parents and grandparents.
And many more! The number of people who will now be able to explore this history is simply immeasurable. We are so excited and so thrilled to share these materials with the public!