Print Version (PDF)


February 6, 2017
Jesse Melgar
(916) 653-6575


HOME FRONT: CALIFORNIA DURING WORLD WAR II California Archives Digital Exhibit Focuses on One of the Most Transformative Periods in California History


SACRAMENTO – Today, the California State Archives released its latest online exhibit, “Home Front: California During World War II”. The Home Front exhibit is the latest in a series developed by Archives staff: 

“World War II had a profound impact on California,” Secretary of State Alex Padilla said. “The social and economic fabric of California was forever transformed, as the war brought massive changes to the home front. Scrap metal drives, victory gardens, and rationing became the new normal as Californians contributed to the war effort. As the war effort grew, the defense industry boomed and many Californians entered new industries for the first time. Women in particular joined the industrial workforce in record numbers.” 

“World War II was a transformative period in California history. Many citizens demonstrated courage and selflessness through their service both at home and overseas. World War II also represents one of the darkest periods in our state’s history, as over 110,000 Americans of Japanese descent, most of them U.S. citizens, were forced into internment camps,” Padilla said. “Families faced loss of liberty and livelihood. Japanese Americans lost everything as they were forced to sell their homes, businesses, and other possessions for pennies on the dollar and live behind barbed wire for the duration of the war.” 

“I am grateful to the State Archives staff for compiling the photos, telegraphs, and records that help tell the story of California during World War II. Through our partnership with Google this history will be easily accessible online the world over,” Padilla added. 

“Home Front: California During World War II” is the sixth digital exhibit released through a partnership between the State Archives and Google Cultural Institute. Other exhibit subjects include the construction of the Bay Bridge, California’s first motorists and highways, the history of California state parks, the office of the California Secretary of State, and the nation’s first political consulting firm, Campaigns Inc. Secretary Padilla is committed to sharing California's history through the rich and expansive collections of our State Archives. 

Click here to view the “Home Front” exhibit

To view all of the State Archives’ exhibits available via the Google Cultural Institute visit:

As part of this partnership, the State Archives will continue to digitize exhibits for inclusion on the Google Cultural Institute website. 


Follow the California Secretary of State on Twitterand Facebook.