A series of literary articles and poetry published by first-generation Japanese immigrants incarcerated at Heart Mountain during World War II has been awarded the best website prize by the Wyoming Historical Society.
Known as the Heart Mountain Bungei, the literary journal was published in Japanese in Heart Mountain during World War II. The Bungei articles and poetry were translated as part of a program supported by a grant from the Japanese Foreign Ministry.
Cally Steussy, the museum’s director of interpretation and preservation, directed the translation project, which involved a team of translators working remotely from around the country in 2021 and 2022.
The website was designed by Kate Wilson, who leads all graphic design and marketing for the Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation. The site was built and developed by Turncoat Agency out of Gillette, Wyoming.
Translation of the Bungei was done by Marie Abe, Joseph Boxman, Paul Denhoed, Nate Gallant, Lisa Hofmann-Kuroda, Kenji C. Liu and Allison Powell.
There were six editions of Bungei published at Heart Mountain between January and September 1944. They were the product of several poetry clubs in camp during the war.
Editors Iwamuro Yoshiaki and О̄kubo Tadashige decided to collect the work produced by these clubs, as well as essays and short stories and works by independent writers, and published them as a literary magazine.
The Bungei web page, which features the first volume of the journal, can be found HERE.