• Act Now to Protect Minidoka National Historic Site

    August 5, 2022

    Block 22 at Minidoka National Historic Site, Jerome, Idaho

    photo by: Stan Honda/National Park Service

    Minidoka National Historic Site in Jerome, Idaho, is a site of conscience where 13,000 Japanese Americans were incarcerated during World War II.

    In 1942, the U.S. government violated the constitutional rights of 13,000 Japanese Americans when it forcibly removed them from Western U.S. states to remote south-central Idaho. Living in harsh and cramped conditions, surrounded by barbed wire, and guarded by military police, families attempted to lead daily lives that were as normal as possible.

    Minidoka’s sweeping vistas and distant mountains continue to convey the isolation and remoteness that Japanese Americans experienced there. However, a wind project has been proposed next to Minidoka National Historic Site, potentially placing wind turbines within the historic footprint of the Minidoka camp.

    If constructed as currently planned, the project could irrevocably change Minidoka’s landscape, potentially creating a visual wall of hundreds of wind towers, each taller than the Seattle Space Needle, with blades exceeding the wingspan of a Boeing 747. For this reason, Minidoka was listed on the National Trust’s America's 11 Most Endangered Places in 2022.

    Public advocacy by supporters like you can make a difference, and Minidoka needs your voice now more than ever.

    Sign your name to join the National Trust, Friends of Minidoka, and other partners in urging the Bureau of Land Management to suspend its review of the proposed Lava Ridge Wind Project and instead engage in a public process to revise the Monument Resource Management Plan, in order to protect Minidoka and provide a more holistic approach to manage federal lands.

  • National Trust and Partners Celebrate Major Victory at Rassawek

    March 16, 2022

    As a final step in a massive four-year preservation and legal battle to protect Native American sacred ground, the James River Water Authority (JRWA) has voted to choose an alternate site for its water supply project, protecting the sanctity of Rassawek, the historic capital of the Monacan Indian Nation and an important ancestral burying ground.

    The National Trust for Historic Preservation has been one of the key advocates in the struggle to save Rassawek, participating in federal review processes and advocacy campaigns to preserve this historic site, as well as placing Rassawek on the 2020 list of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places.

    After a hard-fought legal battle and massive public response in support of saving Rassawek, the JRWA changed course and worked with the Monacan Indian Nation to study a potential alternative site for the pumping station, and on March 16, they voted to move the plant to an alternate location. They also have agreed to facilitate transfer of the JRWA’s parcel at Rassawek to the Monacan Tribe.

    This marks a victory for the Monacan people and for all Tribal Nations striving to protect their sacred lands, and we support the precedent that the JRWA has set in working with the Monacan leadership to make this important decision.

    In moments like this, we celebrate who we were in the past, who we are today, and who we hope to become in the future. Congratulations to the Monacan Indian Nation and our preservation partners in Virginia for helping to protect and tell the full American story.

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We believe all Americans deserve to see their history in the places that surround us. As a nation, we have work to do to fill in the gaps of our cultural heritage.

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