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#56457 - 10/17/19 07:21 AM Skeleton discovered in Williamson bowl
BFR Offline


Registered: 04/07/16
Posts: 139
Loc: Santa Monica, CA


Edited by BFR (10/17/19 07:24 AM)
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Strava, IG

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#56458 - 10/17/19 07:48 AM Re: Skeleton discovered in Williamson bowl [Re: BFR]
BrianWz48 Offline


Registered: 10/17/19
Posts: 2
Loc: California
I was an active Sierra hiker in the 1970's and 1980's and climbed Mt. Williamson three times during that period.

A Sierra Club trip leader told me in the 1980's that during World War II Japanese inmates of the Manzanar Internment Camp would sometimes take deceased inmates and bury them in the Mt. Williamson area which was behind the camp.


Manzanar camp gate with historic marker

smile


Edited by BrianWz48 (10/17/19 08:01 AM)

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#56461 - 10/17/19 02:07 PM Re: Skeleton discovered in Williamson bowl [Re: BrianWz48]
StorminMatt Offline


Registered: 06/20/19
Posts: 46
Loc: Norcal
Originally Posted By: BrianWz48
A Sierra Club trip leader told me in the 1980's that during World War II Japanese inmates of the Manzanar Internment Camp would sometimes take deceased inmates and bury them in the Mt. Williamson area which was behind the camp.


Japanese inmates were actually allowed to leave the camp to do this?

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#56463 - 10/17/19 04:05 PM Re: Skeleton discovered in Williamson bowl [Re: StorminMatt]
tif Offline


Registered: 09/26/11
Posts: 55
Loc: colton, ca
It would surprise me if they took them up to the top of the pass/in the Williamson Bowl where this was found. I know there was a cemetery as part of the internment camp too, so would be surprised if they did allow folks to be buried elsewhere.

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#56465 - 10/18/19 06:50 AM Re: Skeleton discovered in Williamson bowl [Re: BrianWz48]
Bob West Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 834
Loc: Bishop, CA, USA
Was that trip leader tripping on something?

http://manzanarstore.com/cemetery.html

https://www.sierrawave.net/decades-old-human-remains-discovered-on-mount-williamson/

The Manzanar cemetery was a long way from Mt. Williamson. Japanese would never bury one of their loved ones in the condition the remains were found.



Edited by Bob West (10/18/19 10:24 AM)

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#56468 - 10/19/19 01:19 PM Re: Skeleton discovered in Williamson bowl [Re: Bob West]
StorminMatt Offline


Registered: 06/20/19
Posts: 46
Loc: Norcal
Originally Posted By: Bob West
Was that trip leader tripping on something?

http://manzanarstore.com/cemetery.html

https://www.sierrawave.net/decades-old-human-remains-discovered-on-mount-williamson/

The Manzanar cemetery was a long way from Mt. Williamson. Japanese would never bury one of their loved ones in the condition the remains were found.



Not to mention that Shepherd Pass is an 11 mile hike one way with 6000ft of elevation gain. Not exactly the kind of trek you want to make while carrying a corpse. And that’s the hiking distance and elevation gain from the Shepherd Pass Trailhead. Manzanar is a good deal further and adds a couple of thousand feet of elevation gain.


Edited by StorminMatt (10/19/19 01:21 PM)

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#56469 - 10/19/19 04:45 PM Re: Skeleton discovered in Williamson bowl [Re: StorminMatt]
Bob West Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 834
Loc: Bishop, CA, USA
Even from the last parking area it is a long, hard hump across that bowl.

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#56481 - 10/23/19 02:33 PM Re: Skeleton discovered in Williamson bowl [Re: Bob West]
BrianWz48 Offline


Registered: 10/17/19
Posts: 2
Loc: California
Today's news story:

Bones may be those of Japanese American from internment camp
https://www.sfgate.com/news/crime/article/APNewsBreak-Bones-may-be-remains-of-lost-14556628.php

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (AP) — In the closing days of World War II, a Japanese American set out with other men from the infamous internment camp at Manzanar on a trip to the mountains, where he went off on his own to paint a watercolor and got caught in a freak summer snowstorm.

A hiker found Giichi Matsumura's body weeks later, and he was laid to rest in a spot marked only by a small pile of granite slabs.

Over the years, as the little-known story faded along with memories, the location of Matsumura's remote burial place was lost to time, and he became a sort of ghost of Manzanar, the subject of searches, rumors and legends.

Now, 74 years later, his skeleton may have finally been found.

The Inyo County sheriff's office told The Associated Press it is investigating the possibility that a set of bleached bones discovered earlier this month in the rugged Sierra Nevada is Matsumura's.

smile

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#56494 - 10/25/19 10:23 PM Re: Skeleton discovered in Williamson bowl [Re: StorminMatt]
Jonathan C Offline


Registered: 03/03/19
Posts: 45
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Originally Posted By: StorminMatt
Originally Posted By: BrianWz48
A Sierra Club trip leader told me in the 1980's that during World War II Japanese inmates of the Manzanar Internment Camp would sometimes take deceased inmates and bury them in the Mt. Williamson area which was behind the camp.


Japanese inmates were actually allowed to leave the camp to do this?

I'm guessing that anecdote was a corrupted version of the true story of the one man who happened to die up there and was buried there by necessity.

As to whether they were allowed to leave, fascinating info on that topic in this article:

https://ktla.com/2019/10/23/bones-found-...zhskyY-bURIEzHs

Quote:
Some of the men began sneaking out at night to go fishing for days at a time, evading the spotlight from a guard tower manned by soldiers with machine guns, said Cory Shiozaki, director of the documentary “The Manzanar Fishing Club.” The anglers would slip back into the camp with big trout caught in the streams and lakes around Mount Williamson, California’s second-highest peak at 14,374 feet (4,381 meters).

Unlike the early days of the clandestine outings, there was no security on July 29, 1945, when Matsumura tagged along with six to 10 fishermen on the arduous trek to a chain of lakes beneath the mammoth peak.

At the time, Germany had surrendered, and the U.S. was days away from dropping the first of two atomic bombs on Japan that ended the war. People were allowed to leave Manzanar, and the population had dropped by half, said Brian Niiya of Densho, an organization dedicated to preserving the history of Japanese internment.

Many stayed behind, however, because their homes had been taken or they feared racism and violence upon their return.

“It was kind of a black comedy,” Niiya said. “They were trying to close the camps and people didn’t want to leave. They heard how bad things were on the outside.”

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