Marysville (detention facility)


US Gov Name Marysville Assembly Center, California
Facility Type Temporary Assembly Center
Administrative Agency Wartime Civil Control Administration
Location Marysville, California (39.0500 lat, -121.5500 lng)
Date Opened May 8, 1942
Date Closed June 29, 1942
Population Description Held people from Placer and Sacramento Counties, California.
General Description Located about 8 miles south of Marysville, California. Late spring rains delayed the camp's opening from the slated date of April 16, 1942.
Peak Population 2,451 (1942-06-02)
Exit Destination Tule Lake
National Park Service Info

The Marysville Assembly Center (also known as the Arboga Assembly Center) was one of fifteen temporary detention centers (euphemistically called "assembly centers") administered by the Wartime Civil Control Administration. Most Japanese Americans forcibly removed from the West Coast were sent to one of these centers during the spring and summer of 1942 while the more permanent concentration camps were being prepared.

Parameters

The Marysville Assembly Center was located eight miles south of the town of Marysville and about thirty miles north of Sacramento, at the northern end of the Sacramento Valley. It was built on a former migrant worker's camp. Construction on the site began on March 27, and the camp was ready by April 16. However the opening was delayed by rains that left pools of water and further road construction. The detention facility ended up being populated from May 8 to June 29, a total of 53 days.

The camp included approximately 160 buildings, including 100 barracks, with five dining halls and two infirmaries. Military police barracks were located just outside the entrance.

Population

The population of the Marysville Assembly Center came mostly from Placer and Sacramento Counties. With a total population of 2,465, it was among the smallest of the temporary detention camps. Upon the closing of the camp, its inmates were transferred for more permanent confinement to the Tule Lake, California, camp.

Camp Life

  • Some Marysville inmates were given leave to thin sugar beets, making it the only temporary detention camp that allowed such leave.
  • Four weekly issues of the Arbo-gram newspaper were issued between May 23 and June 13.

Remembrance

Marysville Assembly Center was one of the twelve California temporary detention centers to share California Historical Landmark #934, so named in 1980. However efforts to build a physical memorial on or near the privately owned site have not come to fruition to date. In 2009, the "Arboga Assembly Center Project" received a $5,000 grant from the Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program. In February, 2010, an exhibition focusing on the Arboga Assembly Center titled "Day of Remembrance: The Japanese American Internment Experience" was displayed at the Yuba College library.

For More Information

Aoyagi-Stom, Caroline. "Arboga May Finally Get Some Recognition." Pacific Citizen, May 1, 2009.

Burton, Jeffery F., Mary M. Farrell, Florence B. Lord, and Richard W. Lord. Confinement and Ethnicity: An Overview of World War II Japanese American Relocation Sites. Western Archeological and Conservation Center, National Park Service, 1999, 2000. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2002. The Marysville section of 2000 version accessible online at http://www.nps.gov/parkhistory/online_books/anthropology74/ce16b.htm.

Gebb, Ashley. "'Mystery Camp' Brought into Light." Appeal-Democrat, February 7, 2010.

———. "Plaque Marks WWII Internment." Appeal-Democrat, February 27, 2010.

The Road Not Forgotten: The Journey of Japanese Descendents in Butte, Colusa, Sutter and Yuba Counties (1889–1995). Sacramento, California: Marysville Chapter, Japanese American Citizens League, 1995.