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California State Library logo A Night at the State Library logo
August 20, 2012

Deborah Lynch
Communications Officer
California State Library
(916) 651-6452

A Night at the State Library presents:
"Gila River and Mama: The Ruth Mix Story"

A documentary on the Japanese American Internment funded by a grant from the California State Library

SACRAMENTO – On Wednesday, September 19, A Night at the State Library presents: "Gila River and Mama: The Ruth Mix Story." Over 120,000 Japanese Americans were interned in relocation camps during World War II. This inspiring film tells the true story of life in one internment camp from a unique perspective, that of a Caucasian volunteer who witnessed the events first hand. Ruth Mix was only 15 when she and her mother Frida went to work and live at the Gila River Japanese American Internment Camp in Arizona in 1942. Her mother worked as a school teacher while Ruth volunteered as a nurse's aide in the hospital. Ruth was the only Caucasian nurse's aide at the camp hospital.

Ruth's daughter, Claire Mix, who now lives in Sacramento, produced and wrote the film. She tells the story through on-camera interviews with Ruth filmed just a few months before she passed away. Ruth did not get to see the final product that her daughter created. Japanese American survivors from the Gila River Camp were also interviewed. Local actors provided the re-enactments which were shot in black and white. It was "one of the most moving and thought-provoking documentaries I've ever seen" says Ed Goldman, columnist with the Sacramento Business Journal.

The documentary was a finalist in the Northern California Emmys this year and received First Place documentary from the San Francisco Peninsula Press Club in 2012. It was funded through the State Library's California Civil Liberties Public Education Program. A discussion follows the screening with the film's executive producer, Charles Class and with writer, producer, Claire Mix via Skype.

WHERE: 900 N Street in Sacramento

WHEN: Wednesday, September 19. Doors open at 5:00 p.m. Presentation begins at 6:00 p.m.

The event is free with RSVP.

RSVP: or 916.653.9942.

A Night at the California State Library continues the 162-year tradition of successfully connecting Californians to our collective history through its special event and is made possible by generous donations from the California State Library Foundation.