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Our Daily Diary - April 20, 1943

This is a page from a 3rd-grade class diary at the internment camp at Topaz, Utah, where the government imprisoned people of Japanese descent during World War II. Mouse over the page to learn more. Or read the text here.

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There was a parade of war machines in Delta on Sunday.

(This entry shows that these children were not just a normal third grade class as they write about the war machines parade in Delta, a town near Topaz. The class also writes that it is Hitler’s birthday. Imagine recording Adolf Hitler’s birthday while he was still alive and fighting against your country.)

Saturday, Edwin was given a little dog named "Tippy."

Today is Hitler's birthday.

Yesterday was Mr. Wakasa's funeral.

(This shows even more how abnormal these children's lives were. Mr. Wakasa was an elderly man who wandered too close to the fence--and a guard shot him to death. Why might this have happened? How do you think the children felt about the fact that an ordinary neighbor of theirs was killed just for walking?

It seems kind of strange that the children could write about Hitler's birthday, a tragic funeral, lizards and flowers all in one page. Why did they do this?)

Kiku brought us four lizards today.

(These children from California probably didn't see lizards much. But here, they saw lots of lizards and other desert animals.)

There was a flower show at Block 36.