There are 10,767 persons. At its height on January 1, 1943, the camp housed 10,767 individuals. More than 14,000 detainees went through the camp during its 1,187-day operation.
Heart Mountain is now a national monument managed by the National Park Service. The NPS estimates that there are about 150 people living in the community today. Most are older retired people who live in the few remaining housing units within walking distance of the cemetery.
The original Heart Mountain War Relocation Center was an American World War II detention center for approximately 10,000 Japanese Americans from west of the Mississippi River. It opened on March 3, 1940 and closed on November 30, 1945. The entire population of Japanese Americans living on Heart Mountain at the time of their removal to this facility were eventually transferred to more permanent sites. Heart Mountain is best known as the location of the so-called "Hellhole of the Rockies" labor camps where internees performed hard physical labor under brutal conditions for little or no pay.
After the war ended, some former inmates returned to Heart Mountain but most moved to larger communities or back home to rural America. By 1949, only 86 people were still living on the heart mountain reservation with only 44 children being born in the two years after the war's end.
At the close of World War II, the United States had prisoner-of-war camps, comprising 175 branch camps servicing 511 area camps and housing over 425,000 prisoners of war (mostly German).
The number of POWs held by the US is estimated to be between 180,000 and 220,000. China holds about 6 million survivors from WWII, most of whom are now in their 80s or 90s.
The Chinese government does not disclose how many of these survivors were inmates of military prisons but claims that only a few thousand people still remain unaccounted for.
In addition, there are said to be another 4 million missing persons of Japanese origin. Most of them are believed to have died of starvation or disease after being forced to work on Japanese farms following their imprisonment. A small number may still be alive; some families believe they are still imprisoned somewhere in Japan.
According to some sources, up to 100,000 Koreans also lost their lives while enslaved by the Japanese during WWII.
After the war, the Soviet Union held more than 1 million Germans captive until they could be returned home. This was part of President Harry S. Truman's policy toward Germany: If they were willing to surrender peacefully, they wouldn't be harmed. If they resisted, then they got what was coming to them.
From the Normandy assault in June 1944 through December 1944, 30,000 prisoners arrived per month; in the latter months of the war, 60,000 landed each month. Texas had about twice as many POW camps as any other state, due to the availability of space and, strangely, the climate. The camps were mostly located in rural areas away from cities and towns.
POWs held in Texas:
About 1.5 million soldiers were captured during World War II, nearly half of them Americans. Most were quickly released under terms of the Geneva Convention, but some countries, such as Japan, kept their captives indefinitely.
Texas played a role in creating most of these POW camps. In the early part of the war, when it came to holding prisoners, Texas was almost alone among the states - without prisons of its own - so officials built facilities across the country for war crimes trials. After the war started winding down, they began taking in ex-prisoners on a temporary basis. By 1948, there were still about 7,500 Germans, Italians, and Japanese living in Texas state prisons.
The number of POWs increased the longer the conflict went on. By the time Germany surrendered in May 1945, there were more than 200,000 prisoners of war in Texas.
Most prisoners were released within weeks or months after being taken captive.
According to Wagner, about a million individuals were recorded as inmates in the camps, and nearly a million perished while there. The exact number of deaths is not known but is estimated to be between 600,000 and 800,000.
The figures for survivors include those who died later from their injuries or diseases that were untreated because they could not afford medical care.
The majority of inmates were civilians, including many women and children. Prisoners came from all over Europe, with people from Britain, France, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Russia, and Yugoslavia holding positions in the camps. Although Jews made up only 15% of the camp population, they accounted for 50% of the deaths. Christians suffered too; estimates are that out of every 100,000 people imprisoned, 7,000 lost their lives.
Inmates worked in coal mines, on agricultural projects, and in industrial plants, usually under terrible conditions. They were given little if any pay and often had their names entered into special registers when they arrived at the camps.
After the war there were investigations into the crimes committed in the camps. The trials of camp officials did take place but not until several years after the end of the war.