Historic Fort Snelling Summer 2018 Exhibits

For immediate release

Release dated: 
April 17, 2018
Media contacts: 

Lauren Peck, 651-259-3137, lauren.peck@mnhs.org
Jessica Kohen, 651-259-3148, jessica.kohen@mnhs.org

Historic Fort Snelling Summer 2018 Exhibits

This summer Historic Fort Snelling will host a national exhibit on Japanese-Americans during WWII, including additional Minnesota content. MNHS exhibit developers will also test a prototype on soldiers’ stories throughout the fort’s history in preparation for a final exhibit in 2020.

“Courage and Compassion: Our Shared Story of the Japanese American Experience”
When: June 30-Sept. 3, 2018
Location: Historic Fort Snelling visitor center

This exhibit, created by the nonprofit Go For Broke National Education Center, chronicles the Japanese-American experience during World War II and features local and regional stories of bravery and extraordinary support of Japanese-Americans. Through the use of images, audio and interactive elements, “Courage and Compassion” provides a 360-degree perspective on these WWII stories while exploring their relevance today. The exhibit also honors everyday people in cities and towns across America who rose above the wartime hysteria to recognize Japanese-Americans as friends, neighbors and fellow citizens.

This exhibit’s time in the Twin Cities is a partnership between Historic Fort Snelling and the Twin Cities Japanese American Citizens League. Additional local content will explore Fort Snelling’s time as the location of the Military Intelligence Service Language School (MISLS), where Japanese-American linguists trained for the war effort. Prior to WWII, about 50 Japanese-Americans called the Twin Cities home, and today, in part due to the MISLS, the area has a vibrant Japanese-American community.

This project is funded, in part, by a grant from the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Japanese American Confinement Site Grant Program. Additional support is provided by the Earl K. and Ruth N. Tanbara Fund for Japanese American History in Minnesota.

Prototyping Soldiers’ Stories
When: During summer open hours
Location: Stone barracks of the historic fort

This prototype project will allow exhibit developers to test how best to tell the stories of several Minnesota veterans with connections to Fort Snelling from the Civil War to today. It will examine topics like why these men and women joined the military, how their service shaped their lives and Fort Snelling’s role in their experiences.

Staff will gather visitors’ thoughts and feedback on the prototype work, and this feedback will help shape the finished exhibit featured in the site’s new visitor center, scheduled to open in 2020.