On January 17, 2001, President Clinton signed the legislation creating Minidoka Internment National Monument. On January 17, 2011, the site began a year-long series of projects that have made Minidoka National Historic Site (renamed in 2008) come alive in celebration of its tenth anniversary.
A new park entrance sign now greets visitors as they enter the site.
The honor roll, a three paneled structure that lists the names of the men and women from Minidoka who served in the military, was reestablished at the entrance area.
Visitors can now walk along a 1.6-mile-long interpretive trail with wayside signs that provide information about the historic structures and landscapes and about the people who comprised Idaho’s seventh largest city at the time. Benches are placed along the trail providing places to rest and reflect.
The recreation of one of the 35 residential blocks began last June. A historic barracks building was returned to Block 22, followed by an original mess hall building in July. Stabilization and rehabilitation work continues on these two structures as well as a historic fire station.
The most recent addition to the site is a recreated section of the historic barbed-wire fence that ran along the North Side canal. Funding has been received this year to stabilize the historic root cellar built by camp internees.
A new museum building was completed at Hagerman Fossil Beds National Monument. Minidoka NHS museum artifacts and archival collections will be moved into the building within the next six weeks.
The park’s long range interpretive plan was begun last year and will be completed this year. It will guide interpretation and education efforts for the next ten years.
Park staff introduced a Minidoka Junior Ranger program during the last part of 2011. The park has received additional funding this year to expand the program.
Along with its partners, Friends of Minidoka, the College of Southern Idaho, and Boise State University, the park has begun planning for the Seventh Annual Minidoka Civil Liberties Symposium, which will be held on June 21st and 22nd at Boise State University. This year’s theme is “Through the Eyes of Children: Prejudice, Education, and Community.” There will also be a teachers’ workshop conducted by Densho: The Japanese Legacy Project and Minidoka NHS.