Japanese American National Museum
Are you interested in Japanese culture? Here you will find out how it came to America.
The first museum in America.
This was the first museum built in America, and also the largest, devoted exclusively to the history of Japanese immigration. Its first site in 1925 was located in the Buddhist temple Hongwanji, a spectacular building designed by the architect Edgar Cline, with clear American and Oriental influences. Decades later, in 1999, it opened the doors of its current site, located at 369 East First Street, in the heart of Little Tokyo. Inside it exhibits an impressive archive of moving images, alongside all kinds of utensils, clothing, art works, photographs and oral narratives of the life of the Japanese in this area of America. In total it uncovers more than 130 years of history, including the complex period corresponding to the Second World War, when being Japanese was frowned upon in the United States. Currently, the area of the building that was used as a confinement centre for suspected Japanese citizens during the war houses some of the museum’s offices and rooms. It is open from 11.00 am to 5.00 pm on Tuesday to Sunday, except Thursdays, when it is open from 11.00 am to 8.00 pm. See www.janm.org for more information.