August 31, 2022
  • San Bruno -- A decade-long effort to tell the story of 8,000 Bay Area residents of Japanese ancestry who were incarcerated during World War II at the site of what is now the Tanforan shopping center in San Bruno is now reality.

    On Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, members of the Tanforan Assembly Center Memorial Committee, along with local officials, residents and former detainees and their families, attended the unveiling of a memorial built to remember the history of the Japanese American incarceration and to ensure that such injustices will not be repeated in the future.

    The Board of Supervisors, in June 2016, voted to grant the committee $250,000 in Measure K funds toward building a memorial.

    Following the outbreak of World War II, approximately 112,000 individuals who were deemed security risks due to their ethnic background were sent to assembly centers, including Tanforan (a race track at the time), before being sent to long-term camps for the duration of the war. 

    Photos courtesy of Blach Construction Company

    Tanforan Memorial Statue Unveiling

    Tanforan Memorial Statue Unveiling

    Tanforan Memorial Statue

    A central element is a bronze statue by Sandra J. Shaw recreating photographs of young sisters on their way to Tanforan.

    Tanforan Memorial Names

    The memorial includes the names of those who were incarcerated at the Tanforan assembly center.

    Tanforan Memorial Overview

    The memorial is located just outside the San Bruno BART station, 1151 Huntington Ave., San Bruno, next to the Tanforan mall.