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Incarceration of Japanese & Japanese Americans in Hawaiʻi: Home


While there is much scholarship about the incarceration of Japanese and Japanese Americans during World War II, there is not much about the Hawaiʻi experience. This guide attempts to pull together published materials and online resources.

The Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaiʻi has tallied 1,330 Japanese nationals and Japanese Americans from Hawai'i incarcerated during World War II. Of these, 370 were incarcerated at Honouliuli at some point; many more were sent to mainland camps. See the PDF attached below for additional details.

An estimated 17 sites throughout the territory were used to confine Japanese and Japanese Americans during World War II:

Kauaʻi:  Waimea Jail, Kalāheo Stockade, Wailuā Jail, Līhuʻe Plantation Gymnasium, Kauaʻi Courthouse

Oʻahu:  Honouliuli Internment Camp, Sand Island Detention Camp, U.S. Immigration Station, Honolulu Police Department, Honolulu Military Police Station (Yokohama Specie Bank)

Molokaʻi:  Kaunakakai Jail

Maui:  Maui Jail, Haʻikū Military Camp

LānaʻiLānaʻi Jail

Hawaiʻi:  Hilo Independent Japanese Language School, Waiākea Prison, Kīlauea Military Camp


See the Densho terminology for information about the terms of the Japanese American WWII incarceration.

Internment map of Hawai'i

Map from "Finding Honouliuli" by Katrina Valcourt, Honolulu magazine, June 2015, pp. 44-47.

Subject Guide

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Jodie Mattos
Hawaiian Collection, Hamilton Library

Fifth Floor, Office 511
Hamilton Library
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Honolulu. HI 96822
Subjects: Hawaii