The Train to Crystal City
FDR’s Secret Prisoner Exchange Program and America’s
Only Family Internment Camp During World War II
The Train to Crystal City is reviewed in the April 26th edition of the New York Times Book Review, saying: “Poignant… Russell movingly focuses on human stories coming out of one camp that held both Japanese and Germans, outside Crystal City, Tex.” Read the full review.
The dramatic and never-before-told story of a secret FDR-approved American internment camp in Texas during World War II, where thousands of families—many US citizens—were incarcerated.
From 1942 to 1948, trains delivered more than 6,000 civilians from the United States and Latin America to Crystal City, Texas, a small desert town at the southern tip of Texas. The trains carried Japanese, German, Italian immigrants and their American-born children. Read more>>
The Train to Crystal City is a NY Times Bestseller!
The Train to Crystal City was picked as an Amazon.com Best Books of the Month for January 2015.
“Russell does a good job of exploring little-known historical events that deserve more attention — life at Crystal City and the prisoner exchanges. Die-hard Texans who think they know everything about the Lone Star State are likely to discover that they don’t. …even readers with no particular interest in World War II — or ties to Texas — may find it hard to put the book down.
—The Dallas News (read full review)
“Texas Monthly contributing editor Russell recounts a dark episode in America’s past in this engrossing history of the forced detention of thousands of civilians in internment camps during World War II.”
—Kirkus (read full review)
“The Train to Crystal City is a story of heartbreaking dislocation, of lives smashed and ruined, and of almost unbelievable human endurance, resilience, and determination. Jan Jarboe Russell has written a powerful book that will leave you shaking your head in disbelief.”
—S.C. Gwynne, New York Times bestselling author of Rebel Yell and Empire of the Summer Moon
“Jan Jarboe Russell has exposed a corner of American history that few knew existed, one that is at once bitter and transformative. The glory of this book is in the many human details so skillfully sketched, which add another chapter to the unending tally of war.”
—Lawrence Wright, author, Thirteen Days in September: Carter, Begin, and Sadat at Camp David