HYDE PARK, N.Y. – The Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum presents a Day of Remembrance conversation and book signing — in observance of the anniversary of FDR’s signing of Executive Order 9066 — with Bradford Pearson, author of “The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration, and Resistance in World War II America, on Sunday, Feb. 19, at 2 p.m. ET.

The event will be held in the Henry A. Wallace Center at the FDR Presidential Library and Home and streamed live to the official FDR Library YouTube, Twitter and Facebook accounts. This is a free public event, but registration is required for in-person attendance (local health metrics permitting). Visit www.fdrlibrary.org to register.

This program is made possible through the generous support of Patti Hirahara of Anaheim.

In the spring of 1942, the U.S. government forced 120,000 Japanese Americans from their homes in California, Oregon, Washington, and Arizona and sent them to incarceration camps across the West. Nearly 14,000 of them landed on the outskirts of Cody, Wyo., at the base of Heart Mountain. Behind barbed-wire fences, they faced racism, cruelty, and frozen winters. Nevertheless, they tried to recreate aspects of their lives before the camps.

In the fall of 1943, the camp’s high school launched its first football team, the Eagles. Against all odds, they went undefeated, crushing the competition from nearby, predominantly white high schools. Amid all this excitement, American politics continued to disrupt their lives as the federal government drafted men from the camps for the front lines — including some of the Eagles.

As the team’s second season kicked off, the young men faced a choice to either join the Army or resist the draft. Teammates were divided, and some were jailed for their decisions.

“The Eagles of Heart Mountain” honors the resilience of extraordinary heroes and the power of sports in a “timely and utterly absorbing account of a country losing its moral way, and a group of its young citizens who never did” (Evan Ratliff, author of “The Mastermind”).

Bradford Pearson is the former features editor of Southwest: The Magazine. He has written for The New York Times, Esquire, Time, and Salon, among many other publications. He grew up in Hyde Park and now lives in Philadelphia. “The Eagles of Heart Mountain” is his first book.

Patti Hirahara is the last-born descendant in the U.S. of the Hirahara family, who arrived here in 1907, and is a third-generation photographer. Her family history is relatively unknown; her grandfather George Hirahara built a secret photo darkroom and mini photo studio under his family’s barrack apartment 15-9-A in Heart Mountain and produced a collection of over 2,000 photographs. From 1943 to 1945, George -— and his high school-aged son Frank C. Hirahara — took and processed what is considered to be the largest private collection of photos taken at this Japanese American incarceration camp. Through the generosity of Patti Hirahara, these photographs are now part of the George and Frank C. Hirahara Collection at the Washington State University Libraries.

Contact Cliff Laube at (845) 486-7745 for more information.

Designed by FDR and dedicated on June 30, 1941, the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum is the nation’s first presidential library and the only one used by a sitting president. Administered by the National Archives and Records Administration since 1941, it preserves and makes accessible to the American people the records of FDR’s presidency.

The library’s mission is to foster a deeper understanding of the lives and times of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and their continuing impact on contemporary life. This work is carried out through the its archives and research room, museum collections and exhibitions, innovative educational programs, and engaging public programming.

For more information about the library or its programs, call (800) 337-8474 or visit www.fdrlibrary.org.

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