Japanese-Americans During World War II – Digital Mapping Project

My digital project utilizes Google Mymaps and will track several Japanese-Americans as they moved before, during, and after World War II. I have completed one person’s journey so far as well as much of the contextualization of life in the United States for Japanese immigrants, the outbreak of World War II, and internment. The purpose of this experiment is to bring to light the significantly varied experiences of Japanese-Americans. Many Americans are either ignorant of the internement that took place or believe that internment is the only defining feature of the Japanese-American experience.


The project has been more consuming than I had anticipated and therefore I will likely cut down the number of people that I intend to include in my project to three. I have chosen three people whose experiences represent the variety of circumstances under which Japanese-Americans were forced to live during World War II.


Here is a link to my map as it currently stands:



I will also include a substantial blog post to accompany these maps that will provide further context that is relevant to the unique experiences of each individual that I follow.


Along the way I have had to consider how to make my project more accessible, namely  which information to include and exclude. I have already considerably cut back on the number of points I have included on my map and the information contained within each. Further, I will refine the formatting on the map to include color-coded points and format my map into layers such that each person can be viewed individually. I have also had more difficulty in acquiring relevant photographs to accompany the text and will be unable to include one picture per map point as was my original intention.

One Reply to “Japanese-Americans During World War II – Digital Mapping Project”

  1. It’s exciting to see this project coming together! It looks like you have a good bit of content and I was able to navigate through it on Google MyMaps rather easily.

    Below are some thoughts and observations to consider as you work through to your final product.

    It’s currently not particularly clear what the colors mean for the pins, however, it sounds like you have a plan for that.

    It is also not entirely clear to me if there is significance to the order that the pins are in. It looks like these are in a chronological order as a sequence for your online presentation. If that is the case, it may be good to put in years in the titles for each pin.

    The names for each of the pins are generally currently the place names, given that they show up in the places they are at, it may make more sense to name them based on events or points in the chronological narrative you are telling.

    I think your idea of having different layers for each person you are including is a good idea.

    As far as a final presentation for all of this, you might want to think about setting up a simple word press site where you can embed the map and include an about page. That way you have something more straightforward as a final product that you can point people to. For that you could just have an about page and then a main page with the embedded map and some context and information about what is in it and how to use it.

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