About the Museum

JANM Pavilion at night

The mission of the Japanese American National Museum is to promote understanding and appreciation of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity by sharing the Japanese American experience.

The Japanese American National Museum is the first museum in the United States dedicated to sharing the experience of Americans of Japanese ancestry as an integral part of U.S. history.

In 1985 the Japanese American National Museum was incorporated as a private, nonprofit institution. Over the next several years, volunteers sought backing from community groups. Seeking to safeguard the rich oral histories of first generations immigrants, or Issei, and the artifacts, photographs, written records and other materials documenting the lives of Japanese Americans before, during, and after the World War II mass incarceration, National Museum founders enlisted the support of the Japanese American community.

In 1992, the Japanese American National Museum opened its doors to shed light on the Japanese American experience—a process of immigration and re-settlement common to so many Americans.

Over the years, the National Museum has educated and reached millions of people around the world through our permanent collection—the largest of its kind in the world; historic, cultural, and art exhibitions; public programs & events; educational programs; Watase Media Arts Center; web projects; and more.

Visit janm.org for more information about the museum, exhibitions, events, how to support the museum, and become a volunteer. You can also access online collections and various resources.

Japanese American National Museum
100 North Central Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90012