forget this internment thing, we're going fishing

This is a really interesting story from the San Diego Union-Tribune, on Heihachi Ishikawa, aka "Ishikawa Fisherman," one of a number of Japanese Americans who would regularly risk theirs lives and sneak out of the well-guarded Manzanar internment camp to go fishing: Internment camp detainees risked all to fish.

More than 150 of the Manzanar internees apparently "escaped" camp to go fishing. Manzanar was the first of ten internment camps that housed an estimated 120,000 Japanese Americans who were forcibly removed from their homes on the West Coast at the start of World War II. From March 31, 1942 to November 21, 1945, Manzanar would hold more than 11,000 internees.

Cory Shiozaki, currently a docent at Manzanar, and a member of the Manzanar Committee, is working on a documentary, From Barbed Wire to Barbed Hooks, to preserve the stories of how internees busted out of Manzanar to go fishing in the Sierras.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the annual pilgrimage to Manzanar. Sponsored by the Los Angeles-based Manzanar Committee, it will be held Saturday, April 25, 2009 at the Manzanar National Historic Site. For more information about the event, go here.

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