Kooskia Internment Camp Archaeological Project

Kooskia Internment Camp Archaeological Project

For more information contact:

Dr. Stacey Lynn Camp
CELL: (626) 429-2912
EMAIL: scamp@uidaho.edu

Contact & Locations


College of
Letters, Arts & Social Sciences

Physical Address:
Admin. Bldg. 112
phone: (208) 885-6426
fax: (208) 885-8964

Mailing Address:
College of Letters, Arts & Social Sciences 
University of Idaho
875 Perimeter Drive MS 3154
Moscow, ID 83844-3154

Coeur d'Alene

University of Idaho C'DA‎
1031 N Academic Way
Coeur d'Alene, ID
(208) 667-2588

College of
Letters, Arts & Social Sciences
University of Idaho
Admin. Bldg. 112
P.O. Box 443154
Moscow, ID 83844-3154
phone: (208) 885-6426
fax: (208) 885-8964


Kooskia Internment Camp Archaeological Project

Welcome to the Kooskia Internment Camp Archaeological Project!

On this site, you will find information about the research Dr. Stacey Lynn Camp, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Idaho, is conducting at Northern Idaho's Kooskia Internment Camp, a World War II Japanese Internment Camp. 

The project began in the summer of 2010, when Dr. Camp and her team of faculty, post-doctoral, graduate, and undergraduate researchers performed preliminary archaeological research at Kooskia, including geophysical survey, soil resistivity studies, shovel testing, phosphate analysis, and collected macrobotanical soil samples to determine the location, extent, integrity, and contents of historic gardens and personal effects from the camp's internees and employees. The research design of the summer of 2010's research can be found under the "Publications" tab above. The report of this research will be completed in 2013 and available on this website.

For additional information on the history of Kooskia Internment Camp, please click the "About the Project" tab above. On the "Project Updates" tab, you will find our project's blog that details last summer's research as well as ongoing laboratory research.


On Saturday, July 20th, 2013, we will be hosting a free Public Archaeology Day open to interested children and adults. This event will involve children's activities (ages 4 and up), a show and tell of artifacts from the 2013 field season of the Kooskia Internment Camp Archaeological Project, and a meet and greet with archaeologists from the project. Light refreshments will be served at the event. The event will take place at Three Rivers Resort's Rumpus Room in Lowell, Idaho, and will run from 10:30am to 2:30pm. All members of the public are invited to attend!

2013 Archaeological Field School Information

We will be returning back to the site of Kooskia in the summer of 2013 to conduct additional archaeological research. We are pleased to be offering this project thanks to a generous National Park Service Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant. More details can be found below.

Room, Board, and Transportation

We will be staying at Three Rivers Resort just outside of Kooskia. Students and staff will share small cabins, which have indoor showers and toilets and an outdoor porch with a fire ring. Housing and dinner will be provided free of charge for students enrolled in the course and for staff members of the project. Breakfast and lunch will not be provided, but project staff will make regular trips to the grocery store in the town of Kooskia in order for students to purchase supplies for their meals. Students and staff can stay at the resort during the days off of fieldwork, as lodging is paid for through the entire field school. Transportation to the field site is provided to all students and staff free of charge in vans from the University of Idaho's College of Natural Resources.

Course Schedule

The field school will run from June 26th through July 24th, 2013. During that time span, we will work in the field during the following dates listed below.

A typical day for a field school student looks like this: 

7:00am: Assigned crew loads equipment into vehicles.
7:15am: Staff and student meeting to discuss fieldwork plans for the day and team assignments.
7:45am: Leave for field site.
8am: Arrive at field site, assigned crew unloads and hikes in equipment.
8:15-10am: Work.
10am-10:20am: Snack/bathroom break.
10:20-12pm: Work.
12pm-12:45pm: Lunch/bathroom/rest break.
12:45-2:30pm: Work.
2:30-2:50pm: Snack/bathroom break.
2:50-4pm: Work.
4pm: Close up site for the day. Assigned crew loads equipment into vehicles.
4:20/30pm: Head back to Three Rivers Resort.
4:45-6pm: Break/shower/sleep!
6pm: Dinner at Three Rivers Resort.
8pm: Possible lecture/reading discussion (usually once a week).

Please note that a more detailed schedule and syllabus will be provided to field school students. Here is a rough summary of our project schedule this summer:

June 26th: Arrive at Three Rivers Resort. Students coming from Moscow can ride with Dr. Camp and her staff in field vans to site. There is parking for students who wish to take their own vehicles to Three Rivers Resort. Student and volunteer orientation will take place at 3:30pm. Please make sure to arrive in time to begin the orientation. Dinner will be provided at the resort at 6pm.

June 27th-July 1st: Begin mapping and excavation work at the field site of the Kooskia Internment Camp.

July 2nd: Optional whitewater rafting trip through Three Rivers Resort's river-rafting outlet. The trip is $80 per person (paid to Three Rivers Resort) and will last the entire day. Rafting trip will leave from Three Rivers Resort in the morning. 

July 3rd and 4th: HOLIDAY - no fieldwork.

July 5th-8th: Continue excavation work at the Kooskia Internment Camp. 

July 9th and 10th: HOLIDAY - no fieldwork.

July 11th-15th: Continue excavation work at the Kooskia Internment Camp.

July 16th and 17th: HOLIDAY - no fieldwork.

July 18th-22nd: Continue and finish excavation work at the Kooskia Internment Camp.

July 23rd: Vans head back to the University of Idaho. Students are welcome to ride back to Moscow in them. Help is requested to unload artifact boxes and equipment from vans.

July 24th: Help clean and organize equipment and artifacts at the University of Idaho campus in Moscow. Participation is optional.

Enrollment and Credits

While it is recommended that students participate in the entire 4 weeks of field work, students have the option of enrolling in between 1 to 4 credits, with one week on the field school equalling 1 credit. Students involved in the project must register for credits through the University of Idaho.

Graduate credit fees for summer enrollment at the University of Idaho are $359 per credit.

Undergraduate credit fees for summer enrollment at the University of Idaho are $311 per credit.

In order to enroll in the field school, you should contact Dr. Camp (scamp@uidaho.edu) for permission. Once she has granted permission, you need to enroll through the University of Idaho's summer session program, which can be found by clicking here.

Course Readings

Students enrolled in the course will be expected to read Dr. Priscilla Wegars' book, Imprisoned in Paradise: Japanese Internee Road Workers at the World War II Kooskia Internment Camp, which can be purchased at the University of Idaho's Bookstore online or in-person. Students should read Dr. Wegars' book before the first day of the field school. A course reader will also be assigned and available for purchase at the University of Idaho's bookstore. Books on the archaeology of internment, historical archaeology, World War II, Japanese American internment, and historic artifact identification will be brought to the fieldsite for students to peruse at their leisure.

Site Logistics

While we have the luxury of driving to the site of the Kooskia Internment Camp and walking only a few minutes to the excavation site, potential students should know the following about the site:

1. There are no bathrooms at the excavation site. There is a pit toilet at a campground near the site, but we will only visit it at lunch breaks. Expect to use the bathroom in the outdoors. We have indoor plumbing back the resort.

2. There is lots of shade at the site, meaning that we will have minimal exposure to sunlight and will spend most of the field season protected from heat/sun. Still prepare to bring sunscreen, as you will want to enjoy lunch at a picnic ground on the Lochsa river that is in direct sunlight. 

3. You will need to cross a small creek each day to reach the field site. There is no bridge across the creek, meaning that you will need to navigate relatively cold water that's about 3 feet deep in sturdy shoes. If you have an ankle injury or prior injuries that make it difficult to cross unstable surfaces, you may have difficulty crossing this swift, but not too deep creek.

4. Cell phone service is non-existent in most places around Kooskia. Some people are unable to get service as far as two hours out of the area. Check with your service provider before you leave to see what coverage is available. Wifi is available at the resort as is a payphone. No wifi or cell phone service is usually accessible at Kooskia.

More information on what to bring to the site, what to wear, and how to work in the outdoors will be sent out to field school students in a participant handbook. Please contact Dr. Camp with any additional concerns or questions.

Recent Project News!
  • Undergraduate students Lawrence Shaw and Olivia McDaniels presented posters on artifacts found at the Kooskia Internment Camp at the 2013 Northwest Anthropological Conference.
  • In November of 2012, Dr. Camp presented on the Kooskia Internment Camp at the American Anthropological Association's annual conference in San Francisco, California.
  • Dr. Camp gave a webinar presentation to the National Park Service on the Kooskia Internment Camp in October of 2012. This presentation can be found by clicking here.
  • Students Kali Oliver, Olivia McDaniel, and Jess Workman presented papers on artifacts found at Kooskia at the Northwest Anthropological Conference in the spring of 2012. Their research can be found on the "About the Project" tab in our blog.
  • Check out the August 2011 edition of Idaho Magazine, which features a story on the Kooskia Internment Camp Archaeological Project and several of our project's students discussing their experiences on the project. Read the article by clicking here
  • The National Park Service's Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant program awarded the Kooskia Internment Camp Archaeological Project two separate grants to fund laboratory research and field research in 2011 and 2012. 
  • In July of 2011, Dr. Camp welcomed her second child and budding archaeologist, Ty, into the world! She is on maternity leave until September, when she plans to return to her research and labwork related to Kooskia.
  • The May/June 2011 edition of the international best-selling magazine, Archaeology, covered archaeological research on World War II and included information on the Kooskia Internment Camp Archaeological Project. Segments of the article can be found by clicking here.
  • In June of 2011 and 2012, Dr. Camp hosted archaeological workshops for the 4-H Annual Teen Conference hosted at the University of Idaho. There, high school students learned about and were taught how to identify artifacts excavated from the Kooskia Internment Camp.
  • In the Spring of 2011, Jamie Capawana and Josh Allen traveled to the Society for American Archaeology's annual conference in Sacramento, California, to present on their research related to the Kooskia Internment Camp.


Project Featured

on KHQ

Our project was recently featured on Spokane TV station KHQ. Click below to watch a short video. More


Banner Photos: 
(Center) Kooskia Internment Camp, north central Idaho, 1943-1945. Photographer unknown. Photo courtesy of the Clearwater National Forest, Lochsa District, Kooskia Ranger Station, Kooskia, Idaho and the Asian American Comparative Collection, University of Idaho, Moscow.

(Right) Kooskia Internment Camp Anniversary Picnic, May 25, 1944. Photographer unknown. Photo courtesy of Mickey Barton and the Asian American Comparative Collection, University of Idaho, Moscow.