Overview Image Library Oral Histories Mary Tsukamoto A/V Library Artifacts Related Sites
Oral Histories

Listed below are the summaries of oral histories created by the Florin Japanese American Citizens League Oral History Project and the North Central Valley Oral History Project. These oral histories relate the personal stories of the events surrounding the exclusion, forced removal and internment of civilians and permanent resident aliens of Japanese ancestry. There is a wide variety of interviews of former internees, military personnel, people who befriended the Japanese Americans, and Caucasians who worked at the internment camps.

The oral histories are available for researchers at the Department of Special Collections and University Archives, Library, California State University, Sacramento. Photocopies are limited to a maximum of 20 pages per volume. Complete volumes can be purchased through the local chapters of the Japanese American Citizens League. 


MASATOSHI ABE.   Mr. Abe (age 92) was interviewed in Japanese by Mary Tsukamoto. The book consists of 32 pages in English and 34 pages in Japanese text, one photo of Abe and Mrs. Schulze's letter. The transcription and translation were under direction of Dr. Kobashigawa of San Francisco State University. Son James assisted with the editing. Mr. Abe was able to recall coming to America at age 18 and working with his father in Utah copper mines with several hundred other Japanese. He talks about prewar anti-Japanese feelings in the Sacramento area, working hard for $1 a day for John Davis growing berries and grapes and sending any savings back to relatives in Japan. The postwar years were spent farming in the Elder Creek area. Son James operated the farm and cared for his father until his death in 1991.

ONATSU AKIYAMA.   There are 59 pages of text out of the total 67 pages of this oral history of Mrs. Akiyama (89), a widow. The interview covered three sessions and was in Japanese with some comments from the interviewer and son Ryozo. She talks of doing many kinds of work, in many places in Japan, Jerome Relocation Center, with husband in Crystal City, Texas, and around Sacramento for very low pay, and pooling of resources among relatives and friends. As her four sons became older, they were a big help as the family tried to cope and survive in Japan and Sacramento, especially in her retirement years. The eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren bring satisfaction, as well as various religious literature. Living in Hiroshima after the atom bomb, defeat of Japan and resultant hardships were "the saddest time of our entire life."

FUMIKO AKUTAGAWA.  Fumiko Akutagawa is a Nisei woman who was born in Madera, California in 1923 to the Hirahara family. She described the hardships during her childhood--growing up without a father, having no electricity, and using a hand pump to water the horses. She completed the local schools and was a student at Fresno State College taking a business course when the family was interned in Fresno Assembly Center and Jerome, Arkansas Relocation Center. She took classes at the Fashion Design School in Cincinnati, but her dream of a career was never accomplished. She married and had five children, was widowed and remarried.

BUNZO AND HARUYE ASOO.   Bunzo Asoo was 86 and Haruye Asoo was 80 when interviewed in Japanese and both are now deceased. They migrated to California as young adults due to hard times but returned in 1919 to Okayama to get married. They felt America offered the best for their seven children but returned to Japan frequently, often to study. The war years were spent in Tule Lake, California and Topaz, Utah camps. In 1945, they returned to Sacramento and Bunzo, worked as a gardener from 7 a.m. at 25 cents an hour with a push mower. The temperature rose to 105 degrees at times. After retirement at 65, he engaged in yoga exercises, enjoyed all kinds of food and did much volunteer work for the Adventist Church. The appendix of the book contains many prewar and wartime documents, passports, travel permits, immigration forms, evacuation claims forms, personal property listings and family trees.

LARSON AND BUTLER  This brief oral history is about two non-Nikkei friends of Japanese Americans of the Florin area, especially of Mary Tsukamoto. There are two photos, one each of Larson and Butler; twenty pages of text (two devoted to Butler).  Both spent their childhood and later life as friends of the Nikkei. Larson mentions association with Hawaiian Nisei in his military service of two years. Butler was a life-long friend of education and there is "Arthur C. Butler Elementary School" in his honor.

ROBERT COOMBS.   Mr. Coombs, 77 years old, is a Sacramento native, Stanford University graduate with a teaching credential and one of the first relocation center educators. He helped set up the school curriculum at Minidoka and taught English and Social Sciences. Teaching the Japanese American students was a job he took seriously with dedication and pride. He lived among them in camp, endured their hardships, shared their joys and became closely acquainted with students and parents. He remained in contact after the camps closed, after the war ended and even to this day. His late wife, Marguerite Askew, was also a teacher in Minidoka, and taught Spanish and French.

FRANCES CUMPSTON.   This is an oral history of Frances Cumpston (77), non-Nikkei, widowed and native of Florin. She has good relationships with people and especially is a good neighbor and friend to Japanese Americans, before, during and after WWII. She was one of the very few present at the train depot when all Japanese Americans departed for the Relocation Centers. Parts of the text are more of a candid discussion between the people present, interviewer, interviewee, Percy Nakashima and his wife, Aileen. Frances mentions the positive influence of husband, Bill, their parents, relatives and the local Methodist Church. There is a brief discussion, pro and con about Redress.

FUMIKO DEGUCHI.   Whether living in Japan or in America, life seemed to be one of constant and courageous struggle for Mrs. Deguchi, an Issei. She started with a sickly husband, and lack of English was quite a handicap in America. She was head-of-household which included her own six children and aged in-law parents. "Being poor was most difficult being in America." Yet, she liked the freedom and not being bound by tradition and custom. She recalls leaming to drive, taking the driving test in English, making all the preparations to leave for Poston Relocation Center, returning, and problems of resettling in Florin, frequent poor relationship with in-laws. She is enjoying old age and retirement with 17 grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren around her.

JERRY AND DOROTHY ENOMOTO.   The life story of Jerry Enomoto (71) is similar to the American Horatio Alger and the legendary Japanese Ninomiya Kinjiro. From humble beginnings he achieved a position of citizenship and responsibility receiving many honors and respect covering seventy years. Born in San Francisco, he attended Lowell High School and Tule Lake (Relocation Camp) High School during WW II. After graduating from UC Berkeley, he went to work as a counselor at California's San Quentin Prison, became the first California Asian American Director of Corrections and first Asian American U. S. Marshal, Eastern District of California. His service to community includes many JACL board positions and he was National JACL President, 1966-70. This oral history also includes interviews with his wife, Dorothy (69), who was born in Atlanta, Georgia and shared high school valedictorian honors with Martin Luther King, Jr. She is a former Deputy Director of Corrections of California and is active in many community services in her own right.

BEVERLEE FILLOYBeverlee Filloy is a Caucasian woman who had a collection of letters written by a high school classmate during the evacuation and internment in Tanforan Race Track in San Bruno, California and Topaz, Utah Relocation Center. Her book contains copies of many of those letters which follow the young man, Michihiko Hayashida, from the time he left his home in Berkeley on May 7, 1942. He describes the conditions in Tanforan Assembly Center, the move to Topaz Relocation Center, his experiences in college, medical school and the U.S. Army. Beverlee recalls that during high school, "He was a very shy and good looking young man, and we had some intensive conversations because we shared some other classes. And when the dreadful order came, that all of my classmates were to leave, I asked Mich if he would write to me." Beverlee was born in 1926, attended local schools and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley. She was the wife of a serviceman, mother of two children and in private practice as a Marriage, Family and Child Therapist. And at age 75, she is still working. 

MARGARET GUNDERSON & MARGERY FIELD.   This oral history is about Margaret Gunderson, her daughter Margery Field, and her star pupil Dr. Yuzuru Takeshita. The late Mrs. Gunderson (1903-1997) was interviewed in May 1997, and died a month later. She was an outstanding, dedicated teacher at Tule Lake Tri-State High School. Parts of her accumulated writings, documents, and students' essays are utilized in this book, and the rest is at CSUS Library, Japanese American Archival Collection. She wrote, "No teaching experience can compare with the joy and satisfaction of work at Tule Lake." Daughter Margery fully understood and supported her parents' work at Tule Lake. Her father, Martin Gunderson, was principal of Tri-State High School. Yuzuru Takeshita, Professor Emeritus, University of Michigan, a Kibei, discusses the need for understanding, healing and forgiveness.

ROBERT AND TERESA FLETCHER.   This is a story of a Caucasian couple who demonstrated understanding and courage. It was neither politically correct nor patriotic to show sympathy to the "enemy" even though the victims had absolutely nothing to do with the war except having a common ancestry. Mr. Fletcher's (85) grandparents came West in covered wagons. Mrs. Fletcher's (72) grandparents were Italian immigrants and she spoke Italian when she started grade school. Bob made an agreement to responsibly look after the Tsukamoto, Nishi and Okamoto grape and strawberry farms while they were forced into various relocation centers for the duration of WW II. The Fletchers have lived in this Florin community all their lives, have seen many changes, and are seeing many more changes.

ISAO FUJIMOTO.   Professor Fujimoto (64) of Davis, California was interviewed in 1991 and the oral history book was finished in 1997 consisting of 18 pages of photos and 36 pages of text. He talks of his family of 13 siblings (four are deceased), his education at Berkeley, Stanford, and Cornell, and teaching two years at University of Philippines, long career at UC Davis, and three years as Director of Asian American Studies. His father answered "no-no" on the loyalty questionnaire so the family was sent from Heart Mountain to Tule Lake Internment Center. He consistently mentions family get-togethers and rural communities. His visits to and studies in many places of Western United States and Southeast Asia have exposed him to many cultures.

MIYO FUKANO.   An Issei woman, age 101, whose written responses were translated by Rev. Ishiura. Miyo Fukano was able to read magazines from Japan at age 101, but had great difficulty hearing. So, her interview was not oral, but she wrote responses to questions. Interned at Turlock and Gila River.

Mrs. Miyo Fukano was born in 1896 in Japan and was left by her parents with her grandmother. At age twenty, she came to the Stockton delta area and was married to a man fourteen years her senior. She wrote, "That evening, there was a welcome party and a wedding ceremony. There were a number of rooms upstairs and in one of them, a married life began." She also described her work, "The female cooked, worked ten hours and the pay was $5.00. Meals cost fifty cents." She described camp life in Turlock, California and Gila River Arizona. In 1953 Mrs. Fukano attended night school and obtained her U.S. citizenship in a ceremony in San Francisco. Her book contains a photo of Mr. and Mrs. Fukano at the ceremony and a copy of her Certificate of Naturalization.

JOY NOZAKI GEE.   This oral history tells of Joy Gee (72) living in several places in Japan and America and her involvement in many activities. She was born in Fife, Washington, the family moved to Garden Grove, California, and thence north to Arroyo Grande. WW II years were spent in Gila River Relocation Center and the family (mother, Joy and one sister) was united with their father who was interned in the Crystal City Internment Camp in and operated by the Department of Justice. After the war, the family went to Kyoto and managed to survive by working for the Sixth Army Occupation Forces during this period of extreme shortages. Now in retirement, Joy is enjoying her children and grandchildren, and activities of the Mayhew Baptist Church and CSUS Japanese American Archival Collection Committee.

ALICE GOTO.   Ms. Goto talks about the life of Christian minister's wife and mother of two sons. In so doing, much comes out about her husband, Taro. The interviewer is a Christian minister so the interview becomes a little esoteric. She was born in Florin but as the wife of a minister, took her to many, many places. Older son Leo was born in Spokane and birthplace of Marc is not clear. WWII was spent originally in Topaz Relocation Center but the hostility against husband, Taro, (and other Christian ministers) was severe and threatening, so the family was secretly whisked out of camp to Denver and the (California Street) Japanese Methodist Church. Postwar, she was a faithful helper to Taro as he served as a local pastor and superintendent. In the latter position, the family lived in Lodi. She was active in the Lodi United Methodist Church until poor health curtailed her participation. Then President Nixon sent her a telegram when Taro died in December 1972.

YONEKO HAMAMOTO.   Older Nisei woman (84) with limited schooling (due to necessity of helping parents with strawberries and grapes) was interviewed by Jim Carlson of American River College. The prewar and postwar setting is the Taishoku rural area, and Yoneko currently resides with youngest son's family. She recalls the Poston Relocation camp's "hot weather and not very good food." Hamamoto and ten families returned to Florin by train and many were helped by Caucasian friends with the struggle of resettlement.

TOSHIO HAMATAKA.   Toshio is a Florin Nisei with 60% disability as war veteran. He served in many military installations and was involved with 442nd Japanese American unit in France and Italy sustaining severe injuries and received two Purple Hearts and Cluster. Wife, Sue, and other family were in Amache, Colorado camp. After just two years at Elk Grove High School, he went to work to help support the family and ran an auto repair business after the war. Despite health problems for both, the parents raised four children, and the grandchildren of eldest daughter are twins.

WILLIAM HAMMAKER.  William Hammaker was a Caucasian man who visited the Gila River Relocation Center in Arizona. He was first interviewed by his daughter, Carol Stoughton, at his home in Camarillo, California and later by Joanne Iritani. This ninety year old man revealed a vivid memory of visiting the Gila River Relocation Center. Mr. Hammaker also shared his life story from childhood, through his college days at Penn State University, meeting and marrying his wife Twila, the various locations where he was the director of the YMCA and his activities in his retirement years.

YAEKO HATANO.   Oral history of Yaeko, Issei widow, (35 pages) and family history album (24 pages) of Hatano, Fujimoto and Miyazaki families compiled after their 1993 Honolulu Reunion. Yaeko was interviewed by son Mas and daughter Gerry. She was born in Kumamoto, Japan; educated there through high school, married there and immigrated to Isleton and Newcastle in Northern California. World War II was spent in Tule Lake aware of the pro and anti-Japan factions around them and managing not to get too involved. The family then resettled in Loomis California and finally in the Sacramento area. This Hatano family lived in many places and did many kinds of work to survive. They are grateful that the children obtained American college education, found steady government employment and finally, are enjoying retirement.

SHUKI HAYASHI.   A Nisei man. Shuki and Marian Hayashi were interviewed by Vi Hatano. Shuki was in Poston Relocation Center and  Marian was supervisor of the Poston nursery school. Shuki Hayashi was born in Salinas in 1918.  His mother was widowed when he was seven years old and she raised six little children as a cook in a Japanese labor camp. Shuki was the major wage earner in the family when he was in high school.  At UC Berkeley in 1940, he was advised to change his major because no Nisei could get a job as an engineer. When the war began, Shuki and his family were interned in Poston, Arizona where he taught high school physics and math.  In 1943, he volunteered for the army and discovered that his brother had also volunteered. They both served in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team and saw combat action. His brother died just before the war with Germany ended and is buried in Italy. 

Marian Lind was a Quaker whose first job after college was at the Poston Relocation Center. She was assigned to be supervisor of the nursery school.  About their meeting, Marian said, "I used to see this thoughtful-looking young man walking along with his pipe in his mouth and he interested me."  They met at his neighbor's place in Poston. After his discharge from the army, despite opposition from both families, Shuki and Marian were married in 1946 in Chicago where Shuki was working on the Manhattan project at the University of Chicago, creating and isolating tritium which was used by Edward Teller for his hydrogen bomb. Shuki returned to Berkeley to obtain a doctorate in biophysics on the GI Bill.  He taught at UC Berkeley, UC Davis and CSU Sacramento until his retirement. Shuki and Marian Hayashi told their stories with a great deal of love and humor.

KUNI HIRONAKA.   Born and raised in the Sacramento area, Kuni is one of eight siblings and has four children and three grandchildren. During WWII he had TB and spent some time in a sanitarium. He also received outside treatment and rehabilitation. Due to being of Japanese ancestry, he was under WRA (War Relocation Authority) even when a patient in the sanitarium. Resettlement was difficult due to poor health and loss of the family house to fire. Land was acquired in Mayhew area and family was engaged in farming. He worked at McClellan AFB for 37 years. During this period and in retirement he was active in fighting discrimination in employment. Kuni was active in the JACL, Consumer Affairs, Senior Concerns and election of Matsui to Congress.

WILLIAM BILL HOSOKAWA.    A Nisei man.  Bill Hosokawa was interviewed by Frank and Joanne Iritani in Denver, Colorado. He was interned at Puyallup and Heart Mountain. Bill Hosokawa was born in Seattle in 1915.  He attended local schools and the University of Washingon.  Following graduation from the university in 1937, Bill was unable to get a job in journalism in this country, so he worked in Singapore and Shanghai on Japanese owned newspapers. With the threatening signs of World War II, he returned to Seattle five weeks before the onset of the war.  Bill, his wife and child were interned in Heart Mountain, Wyoming, although other Seattle residents were sent to Minidoka, Idaho.  His wife's mother had been arrested by the FBI because she was a Japanese language teacher and his wife's brother had volunteered for the army after Pearl Harbor. Bill was founder and editor of the Heart Mountain Sentinel and has been a columnist for the Pacific Citizen (JACL weekly) since 1942.  In 1943, he relocated to Des Moines, Iowa and worked for the Des Moines Register and later for the Denver Post (1946 to 1984) where he was a war correspondent, columnist, and editor of the editorial page.  He continues to write his column, "From the Frying Pan" for the Pacific Citizen.   

CHIZU IIYAMA AND ERNEST SATOSHI IIYAMA.   Nisei couple. Chizu and Ernest Iiyama were interviewed at their home in El Cerrito, California by Joanne Iritani.  Chizu was at Santa Anita and Topaz; Ernie at Tanforan and Topaz. Chizu Kitano Iiyama was born in San Francisco in 1921. She attended local schools, and entered U.C. Berkeley at age 16. She was a senior when World War II began. Her father was picked up by the FBI because he was prominent in the Japanese community. The family was ordered to go to Santa Anita Racetrack on April 7, 1942 and Chizu received her B.A. diploma while living in a horse stall.  The family was transferred to Topaz, Utah Relocation Center where Chizu worked in the Social Service Department and met Ernie.

Ernest Iiyama was born in Oakland California in 1912, and in 1920 the family returned to Japan where Ernie completed high school. In 1930 he returned to America, completed high school and entered U.C. Berkeley, majoring in electrical engineering.  He learned about civil and equal rights from members in the Young Democrats of California. In 1934 he helped organize the Oakland Chapter of the JACL and the Nisei Young Democrats of the East Bay. He was interned at Tanforan Racetrack and was elected to the camp council while living in a horse stall. At Topaz he was head of the Housing Department and was elected to the Camp Council. 

Chizu and Ernie were married in Chicago and relocated to New York City where both were active in the Japanese American Committee for Democracy. The family returned to the Bay Area and Chizu was later head of the Early Childhood Education Department of Contra Costa College. She was on the El Cerrito Human Relations Committee, Contra Costa JACL, and the National Coalition for Redress and Reparations. Ernie worked as a machinist and later became a computer technician. They are retired and lobby for Latin American Japanese redress and are active with the National Japanese American Historical Society.

 MINAYO AND SUMAKO IMADA.   Oral histories of Minayo, in her early 90's (in Japanese), and Sumako (daughter), age 76, and autobiography (11 pages) by great-grandson Stephen, age 19. Minayo came to America as teenage picture bride, to "make money," worked in the fields for $1 a day, had two children, seven grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren, and died at age 98. Sumako tells of many hardships living in America and Japan, in Jerome camp, divorcing husband, getting her children into college. Though born and residing in Piedmont, California, Stephen Egawa reminisces about visits to his great-grandmother and other relatives in the Taishoku area of Sacramento.

FRANK IRITANI.   As with most Americans, Frank (76) is a child of immigrants. His parents came from Okayama, Japan, seeking a better life. His education is rather broad, two years at Nichibei Gakuin, Tokyo, as a young teenager, two years in U. S. military with the Military Intelligence Service, a couple of prewar years at Colorado School of Mines, a couple of post WWII years at University of Minnesota, and three years at Pacific School of Religion, Berkeley. Born in Denver, Colorado, he was not forced into a relocation center but, nevertheless, was subjected to discrimination. He is married to Joanne (Ono, Poston internee), and they visited all ten relocation campsites which resulted in the small book, Ten Visits: Brief Accounts of Visits to All Relocation Centers, 1995.

TED ISHIHARA.   An Issei man interviewed by Bernice Endow. The tapes were translated and transcribed by Toyoyuki Fuka, a student from Japan attending CSUS. Interned at Pinedale and Tule Lake. Tetsuo Ted Ishihara was born in 1905 in Japan. His father left Japan in 1910. By the time Tetsuo came to American in 1922, immigration was limited to those who were related to resident aliens in the United States. Ted was a Yobiyose, or one who is called. He worked in the laundry business in Ogden, Utah and Tacoma, Washington. The family was interned in Pinedale, California Assembly Center and Tule Lake Relocation Center where Ted was a block manager. He described life in Tule Lake and his work for the railroad. He was a leader in his Buddhist Church.

WOODROW ISHIKAWA.   This oral history reads like an "average Nisei." Mr. Ishikawa is now 78 and probably around the average age of Nisei today. He is a Sacramento native and youngest of five children. As with other Nisei, his life has consisted of getting an education, helping with the family grape crops, marriage and raising a family, a couple of years in Jerome camp, serving a stint in the military and coping with discrimination as was the lot of every Nisei. During these days of retirement with wife, Mary, he is concerned with his health, especially arthritis; travels, golfs and is enjoying his two grandchildren. He says the low point and saddest experience was "the preparation to leave for the relocation center."

REV. NEWTON ISHIURA.   A Kibei man interviewed by Hiroko Tsuda.  Santa Anita, Hillcrest Sanitarium and Gila River. Newton Ishiura was born in 1918 in Hawaii. His father was a Buddhist priest serving a sugar plantation population. He was educated in the local schools and in his sophomore year of high school the family went to Japan and he graduated from a Lutheran related institution for children from foreign countries. He then graduated from a university in Kyoto, studying Buddhist traditions.  

In 1940 there was an all-Nisei conference in Japan.  He heard others speak of the Japanese military.  The Japanese police considered him to be an anti-Japanese thinker.  He was ordered to report his activities to the police every three months.  A friend at the American Consulate in Osaka warned him to return to America.  In July 1941 he boarded a boat bound for San Francisco. That night going from Kobe to Yokohama, teams of Japanese police interrogated him, but his responses were acceptable and he was able to continue his journey. He was assigned to Buddhist churches in the Los Angeles area. When World War II began, all other priests in Los Angeles were arrested by the FBI.  Newton was interned in the Santa Anita Race Track Assembly Center, where he became ill with tuberculosis.  He was sent to Hillcrest Sanitarium where there were 168 Japanese persons and he conducted interfaith services for the patients.  He was discharged to Gila River, Arizona Relocation Center and after a short stay, he left to work elsewhere.  In 1943, he went to Yale University as Instructor in the Army Specialized Training Program teaching the Japanese language. 

After the war, Newton was assigned to churches in Hawaii where he developed the Buddhist Wheel to be the symbol on gravestones of deceased soldiers. He also worked with the Boy Scouts to develop the Sangha Award merit badge and served on the National Board of Scouts.  He developed the hospital chaplaincy program as well as serving as chaplain to the Hawaiian legislature. Newton was transferred to the Buddhist Church in Toronto, Canada in 1956.  He increased the membership of his church, was involved in the Canadian Interfaith Committee supporting the rights of Indians, and became the first Bishop of the Buddhist Church of Canada in 1967.  He related the treatment of Japanese Canadians by their government during the war.  He was then assigned to the Buddhist Church in Berkeley where his wife died, and later to the Florin Buddhist Church.  He is now retired from the ministry.

KAORU ITO.   An Issei woman interviewed by Dorothy Okura and Chisato Watanabe. Interned at Stockton and Rohwer. Mrs. Kaoru Ito was born in Japan in 1904 and immigrated to Oakland at age 14. She attended school one year then worked for the mayor of Alameda as a schoolgirl.  She attended sewing schools and opened her own school in Oakland.  In 1926 she married a Stockton businessman. The family was interned in Stockton Assembly Center and Rohwer, Arkansas Relocation Center where Mrs. Ito taught ikebana flower arranging and tea ceremony.  They returned to Stockton after the war and Mrs. Ito did housework and continued teaching her classes. In 1953 Mrs. Ito joined many Issei taking classes to obtain her American citizenship.  A photo of this occasion is in her book.                       

KAZUO AND ISAO ITO.   This is a grand life story of a large family of 12 children, 40 grandchildren and 26 great-grandchildren. Mr. Kazuo Ito passed away in Sacramento December 27, 1995 after a full life of 98 years. Mrs. Isao Ito died at age 77 in 1979. All 12 children survive and this oral history was obtained with assistance of eldest son, Paul, 73, and other children. The Issei migrated to America "to make money" and seek a better life but for some it was considerable hardship. In Mrs. Ito's words, "I thought the suffering in Japan was bad, but the suffering in America was worse."

SHIZUKO GRACE ITO.   Mrs. Ito was interviewed in May 1989 in Sacramento at age 86 and she passed away three years later. This oral history is a brief account of her husband, Dr. Masayoshi Ito, herself, and family. They donated land on which today is located the Florin Buddhist Temple and Multipurpose Hall, site of our annual Time of Remembrance program. Their life journey, growing up, education, community activities and vocation occurred in many places in Japan and the Western United States. Dr. Ito provided medical services during WWII at $19.00 per month at Arboga Assembly Center (Marysville, California), Tule Lake and Minidoka Relocation Centers. His over thirty years of medical services and community work were to the local Florin/Sacramento area as well as both Buddhist and Methodist communities.

SHIZUKO ITO, MITSUKO HIRONAKA  & ALLAN HIDA.   This book contains three oral history interviews conducted by Sue Hida. Mitsuko Hironaka and Shizuko Ito are Nisei women, great-aunts to interviewer Sue. Allan Hida, Sue's father, was a child of a Nisei mother, Hide Hironaka Hida, the elder sister of Mitsuko and Shizuko. His Issei father was born in Japan.  Shizu was interned in Fresno and Gila River; Mitsuko in Walerga and Tule Lake; and Allan in Walerga, Tule Lake and Amache.

Shizuko Hironaka Ito was born in 1905 to Issei parents in the small town of Mayfield, California. It later became Palo Alto. She described her childhood in Mayfield where they were the only Japanese family. Her father was an Issei who was a janitor at Stanford University but was released when it became unionized and he became a cook. Her mother died during the influenza epidemic in 1919, so Shizuko, two older and one younger sister were left to take care of the family while their father worked as a cook. She went to San Francisco with her younger sister Mitsuko who completed high school. Shizu took classes at a business college and found work.  In an arranged marriage, in 1937 she married an Issei man who had a dry goods store in Fresno's Japan Town. Shizu had two boys when the family sold the store and its contents including her wedding kimono before going to Fresno Assembly Center and Gila River, Arizona.  She gave birth to a girl in cam. After the war, the family returned to Fresno.

Mitsuko Hironaka was born in Mayfield, California in 1910, the youngest of four girls. After moving to San Francisco with her sister Shizu, Mitsuko completed high school, took business classes and worked in a Japanese-owned company.  With news of the impending evacuation, she moved to live with her sister Hide and her family in Sacramento. Mitsu described the condition at Walerga and Tule Lake. After internment, she moved to Philadelphia, worked with the United Presbyterian Church, then moved back to San Francisco and retired.  Mitsuko never married. 

Allan Hida was born in Sacramento in 1929 to the sister of Shizu and Mitsuko.  He remembers many details of his childhood in Sacramento's Japan Town, Walerga Assembly Center, Tule Lake and Amache Relocation Centers. After a year in Amache, the family moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin where Allan remained. He graduated from college, was in the Marines, and held various jobs before he became a high school science teacher from which he retired in 1989. Allan has been active in the Japanese American Citizens League in many capacities.  He was chapter president, District Governor, and fundraiser and speaker for the Redress effort. He shares the Japanese American experience with classrooms and teachers at social studies conferences students.  

The appendix of this book contains copies of articles published in newspapers at the time of evacuation from Sacramento.  These  were compiled by Sue Hida.

HIDEO KADOKAWA.   One of the shortest oral histories, this has four pages of photos and twelve pages of text. Nisei Kadokawa (80) was local-born in Florin, went to grade school, returned from Jerome and Rohwer Relocation Centers to Sacramento. He raised grapes and strawberries, worked for a cannery and the Sacramento School District and raised a family of three daughters. He was forced, to drop out of elementary school but his daughters and grandchildren all went to college which is satisfying to him.

MARION KANEMOTO.   This is a "solid" oral history where the interview is at the "right" age (63) and done at the "right" time for Mrs. Kanemoto. Significant periods and places are the comfortable security of Seattle, uncertain and desolate Minidoka Camp, survival in war-torn Japan and finally, permanent resettlement in Sacramento. Firmly believing her father "did nothing wrong" eased family's anxieties when he was picked up by the FBI and sent off to federal detention centers in Montana and New Mexico. With the loss of everything and no savings, feeling that repatriating to Japan would be better and with one brother already living there, the Tsutakawa family took an 85-day trip to Japan via the Gripsholm. Marion talks about very adverse living conditions after Japan's surrender. The fact that both she and her father were bilingual helped much. She felt "used" for POW exchanges. Finally, she talks about returning to America, obtaining a professional nursing degree, working as school nurse and seeing that all their four children obtained college education. She firmly believes America is her home and a land of opportunity, provided one secures a quality education and works hard.

VIVIAN KARA.   Mrs. Kara (78) of a very old Florin family knows most of the Japanese Americans around the area. There are seven photos, twenty-seven pages of text and four pages of documents. A widow with two daughters, she has focussed on their proper up-bringing, helped husband with general store, and was quite active in many fraternal and civic organizations, including state presidency of Rebekah. She appears to have no particular strong feelings about segregated schools and Japanese American internment, but she and husband have tried to be friendly and get along with everybody.

MISA KASHIWAGI.   Ninety-seven years old Mrs. Kashiwagi, widowed in 1962, was born in Wakayama, Japan and came to United States at age 20. A mother to five sons and a daughter, she has been active in the Sacramento Japanese Community, is a charter member of the Japanese Methodist Church and a supporter of Florin JACL. The war years were spent in Tule Lake and Minidoka camps and all five sons served in the military.

ROBERT KASHIWAGI. Nisei man. Bob was interviewed by Christine Umeda, his sister-in-law. He was interned at Merced and Amache. Bob was born in Hayward, California in 1919. He graduated from Woodland High School in 1937.  In November 1941 he was drafted into the United States Army but was rejected due to what was later diagnosed as San Joaquin Valley Fever. Although he was bedridden, Bob was discharged from the hospital and taken with his family to Merced Assembly Center and later to Amache Relocation Center, in Colorado.  His father walked to the neighboring town of Granada to buy meat to help Bob regain his health. He was bed-ridden for one year. In 1943, when the Army recruiting team came to Amache, Bob and his brother volunteered to serve in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team. In 1944 he fought with the 34th Division in Italy. In France, he was in the Rescue of the Lost Battalion, later was wounded and still has the shrapnel which was taken from his leg.  He was evacuated to England and eventually to the United States.  Bob recounts the horrors of war in great detail. Bob obtained a job with the U.S. Engineers in the motor pool and in 1947, he was the first Japanese American hired by the State Division of Highways equipment department from which he retired after thirty two years of service.

KOTONO KATO.   Ninety-three years old Issei woman interviewed in Japanese. There are seven pages of photos and sixteen pages of text for the two sessions. Her four children live nearby, look after her, and one daughter helped edit the interview text. Her main interest and activity was artificial flower making. In Amache Relocation Center her artificial flowers were in demand for funerals, especially for the "killed in action." Prewar living was very difficult, enduring death of two small children, working in fields all day, as well as cooking, laundry and other household chores with no rest. Her flower making tools have been donated to CSUS Library Japanese American Archival collection.

HARRY SUYETARO KIINO.   A widower Mr. Kiino (87) was interviewed in the home of son and his wife. Two pages of photos and 45 pages of text make up this oral history book. Because of age, language differences and presence of three individuals, some inconsistencies appear. Japanese phrases are frequent with translations. Recall of the past is of coming from Japan at age fifteen to uncle's Florin farm, going through the depression of 1930's, a year of internment in Jerome, four years in Michigan, recall of Caucasians' friendships, and their flower business in the Fair Oaks area. With a family history of diabetes, Kiino succumbed in 1989.

MOLLY KIMURA.   Education, self-improvement, and teaching others have been central to Molly's (72) life. Born in Yuba City, California of Hiroshima immigrants, her education was acquired in Marysville, California, and in Kyoto, Japan.  Molly accepted circumstances in Tule Lake camp as an opportunity to learn the Japanese language, flower arrangement, and tea ceremony at a time when others were denying anything Japanese. She studied Buddhism in Kyoto and was ordained a priest at Nishi Hongwanji in 1995. Versatile in a number of areas, she is a "bridge," a cultural interpreter and goodwill ambassador between America and Asia, East and West, as a very active member of the Matsuyama Sacramento and Jinan, Sacramento Sister City programs.

KENNETH KANETO KINOSHITA.   Issei man and his wife Michie were interviewed at their home in San Jose, California by Frank and Joanne Iritani. Kaneto was in the Kern County Jail, Tujunga Federal Prison in southern California, Santa Fe, NM Department of Justice Detention Center, and Poston, Arizona Relocation Center. Michie was interned at Poston. Kaneto was interviewed because he had been arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in March, 1942 in Bakersfield. He and his father were jailed and sent to Santa Fe Detention Center. He was born in Japan in 1912 and was brought to the United States by his mother when he was six months old.  He was educated in the California schools through Junior College, but the FBI questioned his loyalty. His two younger brothers had been drafted into the United States Army in 1941. One brother, Jim, had been called in the third draft of that year and was sent to Camp Savage, Minnesota to the Military Intelligence School. In 1943 Jim was assigned to recruit volunteers for the U.S. Army at the Poston, Arizona Relocation Center where his family was interned. Jim later saw action in the Solomon Islands. Left at home in May, 1942 to prepare for the evacuation were Kaneto's mother, sister, wife Michie, and their children, a year old toddler and an infant, ten days old. Jim had purchased a farm and the women had to make the necessary sales and storage preparations.

TED KOBATA.  Ted (73), a Sacramento native, spent WWII in Poston Relocation Center until February 1945 when the family moved to Ontario, Oregon and then returned to Sacramento. They are appreciative of the help of Jim and Evelyn Fairbairn who looked after the Kobata property. As a general contractor, Ted's outstanding supervised/volunteered projects are the Gedatsu Church, Mayhew Baptist Church, and Poston Memorial Monument and Kiosk. He contributed time, funds, technical knowledge, and the use of his construction equipment to these projects. A member of the Florin JACL, Ted participated faithfully in its annual Time of Remembrance programs with his leadership of the Internment Camp Barrack Replica project. During the years sons Glenn and Stanley were growing up, Ted was Assistant Scout Leader and helped with Scout and Little League projects. Ted and wife, Frances, also have a daughter, Hannah, and three grandchildren.

CHIYOE KOBAYASHI.   Mrs. Kobayashi (76) is the daughter of Yoshigo Manji, Issei farmer known for his pioneering efforts in growing "mochi gorne" or sweet rice in the Northern California area. Born in Marysville, she went to Japan at age 16 and stayed 21 years. She married lwao Kobayashi, a naval officer in Japan in April 1940 and spent the war years in Japan while her parents were confined in Tule Lake Relocation Center. They have four children and seven grandchildren and are retired in Sacramento.

MOTOKO KOBAYASHI.   Perhaps kodomo no tame ni (for the sake of the children) best characterizes the life of Mrs. Kobayashi (84). She was sent to Japan at a very early age to live with relatives, and at age 19 she returned to America. One of seven children, the family lived and worked long hours on farms in the Seattle and Portland areas barely meeting expenses. She married Kotaro Kobayashi and raised four children. World War II was spent in the Tule Lake Relocation Center, which she calls a "bad place" because of many fights between pro-Japanese and pro-American groups. The family moved to Placer County and later to Sacramento to retire. Her four children have college degrees and pursued professional careers. The oldest son, Charles, was recently honored by the Sacramento community after his selection as "Judge of the Year' by the Sacramento Bar Association.

HANA KODAMA.   Eighty-three years old Issei lady interviewed in Japanese. Resides in San Francisco and was interviewed in the home of interviewer, Mary Tsukamoto of Florin. There are two photos and 30 pages of text. Contradicting statements possibly due to age and necessity to translate from Japanese into English. Content is about working hard at many different jobs in several different places to maintain large family and secure education for the six children. Finds sense of satisfaction and peace through the church, visits of children and seven grandchildren.

JAMES KURATA.   A Nisei man interviewed by Arleen Mataga. Drafted in September 1941. The family was interned in Rohwer. James Kurata was born in Lodi in 1918. He graduated from high school in 1937 and worked on the grape farms. He enrolled in engineering courses at College of the Pacific but was discouraged from pursuing this career. In September 1941 he was drafted by the United States Army and was at Camp Roberts when war began. He was reassigned to patrolling the Pacific Coast with the National Guard and training as military police. Early in 1943, he reported to Camp Shelby, Mississippi with other Nisei soldiers from other locations.  Jim was assigned to the 522nd Field Artillery Battalion, a component of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team. After a year and a half they were shipped out to Italy and was in the battle north of Rome. Jim related the battles he was involved in--Bruyeres, Vosges Mountains, Rescue of the Lost Battalion and the separation of the 522nd Field Artillery Battalion from the 442nd. They went across the Rhine River chasing the retreating Germans

In May 1945 they encountered a group of Jewish prisoners, still wearing their prison garments who had been released from the Dachau prison camp. They were inadequately clothed for the cold weather and were starving. Morris spoke seven languages so he served as an interpreter for the unit. Jim drove Morris to many locations searching for his wife who had been sent to another death camp. In 1946,  Morris found his wife in Italy and in 1949 they were able to immigrate to the Bay Area where Jim visited them. After discharge in 1945, Jim returned to Lodi to help on the family farm. He applied for a position with the State Division of Highways from which he has retired.  

RUTH ASAWA LANIER  Nisei woman interviewed at her home in San Francisco by Joanne Iritani. She was interned in a stable at Santa Anita Racetrack and at Rohwer, Arkansas. Ruth was interviewed because she had created many public sculptures in San Francisco and was working with a school in her area. She was born in Norwalk, California to Issei parents who farmed before the war. Her father was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. While at Santa Anita, Ruth was able to take art classes from volunteer Nisei teachers who had worked at the Disney Studios. After graduating from high school in Rohwer, Ruth attended Milwaukee State Teacher's College and later transferred to the experimental school, Black Mountain College in North Carolina where she developed her art. She met William Albert Lanier there and they were married in San Francisco in 1948 where her husband worked for an architectural firm. Ruth has a studio in her home and her six children live in the neighborhood.

DOROTHY LOVE MACK.   Mrs. Mack (1902-1996) was interviewed at age 90 by (non-Nikkei) James Carlson, Director of Library Services, American River College, and Lynn Kataoka. There are two pages of photos and 55 pages of text. Mrs. Mack grew up and went to schools in the Sacramento area. A non-Nikkei public school teacher and real friend to Japanese Americans, she considers being a teacher to them as "a most satisfactory experience." With great empathy to their plight, she helped them to prepare for the forced relocation and resettlement after the camps were closed. Frequent reference is made to another non-Nikkei Robert Fletcher and his friendly and helpful relationship to Al and Mary Tsukamoto.

HARRY MAKINO.   Harry (83) was a resident of many places: Japan, Alaska, Seattle, Tule Lake, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Clarksburg, California. He was born in Eastern Washington in 1914 and his family moved to Alaska when he was six months old. After the death of his father, his mother returned to Japan with the children. Three months later, he returned alone at 16 years of age to Seattle where he started at Garfield High School. Then, he stayed at Higashi Hongwanji in Los Angeles and did odd jobs for three years during the Great Depression of the Thirties. He rejoined his sister in Clarksburg and went to Clarksburg High School. He was sent to Tule Lake where he married Frances Kawasaki and went to Chicago and worked in the poultry business. They returned to Clarksburg in 1949. After his poultry business was wiped out due to disease, he went to work for the post office until his retirement.

PERCY TAKESHI MASAKI.   Interviewed at age 85 with his wife, Gladys, (Imahao) present, Mr. Masaki is enjoying retirement with his three children (Setsuo, Colleen and Harry) and seven grandchildren. He has a Sacramento High School education, but he and his wife encouraged their children, as they attended Universities of Michigan and Berkeley. Currently all we practicing in the medical professions. During prewar, Percy Masaki operated a supermarket in North Sacramento. They spent six months at Tule Lake, moved to Ogden, Utah, returned to Sacramento in 1945 and engaged in insurance and real estate work. A life member of JACL, he was president of the Sacramento Chapter in 1956 and also is active in the Buddhist Church.

YOSHIRO WILLIAM MATSUHARA.   Mr. Matsuhara (79) was interviewed by non-Nikkei Donald Walker, Public History student, CSUS. There are three pages of photos and 107 pages of text from four tapes. This is one of the better and interesting oral histories which discusses Matsuhara's prewar situation among the Nikkei in Sacramento, life in hectic Tule Lake and Topaz, with MIS in Southeast Asia, his several after, WWII jobs, and many community involvements. His life is a study of two cultures (American and Asian), of civilian and military life, of private and government work, and of Buddhism and Christianity. As with all minorities, incidents of discrimination are mentioned. He just didn't have time for politics. His two sons were put through college and have non-Nikkei wives. The daughter Colleen is a successful college and professional basketball coach. The oral history concludes with his hope for better human relations.

BILL MATSUMOTO.   This oral history depicts Bill Matsumoto (78) as "All Nikkei" or "All Nisei" due to his wide contacts, many interests and community involvement. For a time, he was dubbed "Mr. Sacramento." He tells about living through the Great Depression of the '30s; prewar anti-Japanese feelings; what it was really like living in Tule Lake Camp after getting married to May Kumasaki in November 1941; going to Amache and its comparison to Tule Lake. They returned to West Sacramento and he went into the produce, life insurance and travel business. He encourages younger people to be proud and loyal and not forget their Nikkei heritage.

GEORGE MATSUMOTO.   Mr. Matsumoto, now age 76, began life in Sebastopol, California, where his parents were migrant workers. He says, "I went to seven different schools before the six grade." Having a strong entrepreneurial spirit, he kept moving for different work opportunities. He voluntarily relocated to Salt Lake City during WWII while his mother went to Amache, Colorado Internment Camp. Finally settling in Stockton with wife, Amy, he successfully started a Red Wing Shoe Store and subsequently opened branches in Yakima, Washington, North Stockton, and Modesto. He obtained only a high school education, but his three children all earned doctorates and a scholarship fund has been set up through the Stockton JACL.

GEORGE MIYAO.   Eighty-one years old Mr. Miyao interviewed in Japanese and English with wife, Masaye, present. There are seven pages of photos, 42 pages of text, 20 pages of handwritten "history of Florin Buddhist Church" and miscellaneous material. Japanese words and phrases, "broken English" abound; the whole oral history rambles along. Experiences in Jerome and Amache camps and several Amy Military centers are mentioned as well as his activity in the Florin JACL and Buddhist Church.

DAVE MORSE.   Mr. Morse (70) a non-Nikkei and friendly to Japanese Americans, is a native and permanent resident of Elk Grove area south of Sacramento. This oral history has seven pages of photos and 35 pages of text. Military service consists of four years stateside in the Air Force. Contacts with Japanese Americans are mentioned as a student beginning at Elk Grove High School, Sacramento City College and Sacramento State College where he was the "first student enrolled in 1947." After earning a teaching credential, he taught at a couple of local colleges and later worked as a counselor. Regarding the internment, the war in general and the aftermath, he says, "everyone got hurt; educating the young people is best."

AYA MOTOIKE.   An Issei woman interviewed by Bernice Endow. Interned in Manzanar. Mrs. Aya Motoike was born in Japan in 1907. Her father owned a shipping vessel and was in the export/import business. She met her husband, eighteen years her senior, who was visiting Japan. They were married and departed for the United States in June 1924, just before the Japanese Exclusion Act became effective in July. Mrs. Motoike worked on the potato farm in the delta and raised two children. An Italian neighbor took care of the farm while the family was interned in Manzanar, California Relocation Center. Mrs. Motoike described the conditions in the camp. The family returned to resume farming and became active members of the Calvary Presbyterian Church.

PERCY NAKASHIMA.   Non-Nikkei are some of Mr. Nakashima's best friends. They gave him some of his best times and were with him when he needed help the most. George Carlisle "a most trusted Caucasian friend" is mentioned often in his oral history, during the depression years of the mid-thirties, during evacuation to camp, and during resettlement after the camps were closed. He mentions a Ben Parker who invited him often for chicken dinners. The 20 years working at the Del Monte Cannery in Sacramento with Caucasian co-workers were 'most enjoyable years." Another source of pride for him was when son Larry served in Vietnam and returned home with a Bronze Star.

MINORA NAMBA.   This book contains many photographs detailing the experiences of Minoru Namba, a kibei. The interviewer of this oral history was the subject’s daughter, Eileen Namba Otsuji. The interviews began in 1992 during a vacation at Lake Tahoe with additional sessions in 1997 and 1998. The last interview was conducted at the hospital just prior to his death in 1999.  Mr. Namba was born in 1916 in the Sacramento area, was taken to Okayama Japan as a child with his sisters, and was left to be raised by his grandparents. He recalled some of the difficulties he encountered as a child in Japan. After completing high school in Japan, he returned to the Sacramento area when he was eighteen years old and attended school beginning in the sixth grade where he learned to read and write English, but the depression came and he had to work on the farm. Mr. Namba received his draft notice in March 1941 and was in the first Military Intelligence Service class at Camp Savage, Minnesota. He related his wartime experiences in New Guinea, Admiralty Island, Woodlock Island and the Philippines, and his experience with a Caucasian soldier who threatened him with a rifle to his back. His commanding officer then oversaw the safety of his kibei and nisei men. Mr. Namba was discharged in1945 and worked at the Army Depot in Sacramento. He was married to Patricia Hashimoto and they had three children, Richard, Eileen and Mike

KAZUO NINOMIYA.   Mr. Nmomiya, age 75, was born in Portland, Oregon, and taken to Japan at age one where he acquired his early education. He returned to the U. S. in 1921 and spent the ensuing years living in Caucasian homes while attending special schools to learn English. He did various kinds of work and lived in different parts of U. S. as well as traveling widely in the U. S. and Asia. His bilingual leadership qualities were put to effective use in the U. S. military, university faculty work, and community activities, especially in U. S. Japan relations areas such as Matsuyarna, Sacramento Sister City programs with his wife, Hiroko.

SHIGENO HOKA NISHIMI.   This oral history of Mrs. Nishimi, age 90, was done in Japanese with daughter Sharon present. Interviewer was impressed with the polite Japanese language. The Japanese spirit shows in her devotion to Japanese arts such as calligraphy and flower arrangement pursued in relocation camp and later life in Sacramento. This oral history book consists of 47 pages of text, ten pages of photos including a page of color and five pages of miscellaneous documents in the appendix. Family consisted of two sons and two daughters and she was widowed in 1990. She remembers the heavy losses of property when the forced relocation took place and mentions very little discrimination and the turmoil, which characterized Tule Lake.

KINYA NOGUCHI.   Though lengthy but thorough, one of the better oral histories consisting of seven pages of photos and 179 pages of text. Noguchi's (64) parents, early education, high school experiences at Tule Lake Internment Camp (student of Margaret Gunderson), and Stockton High School, college study, career in law enforcement starting as clerk, deputy, sergeant and lieutenant with Sacramento County are brought out with some detail culminating in being honored as Odd Fellow's "Peace Officer of the Year." Mention is made of his volunteerism often together with wife, Helen, in VFW, Buddhist Church, JACL activities. Controlled rebelliousness shows during his youth but with experience and maturity, positive relationships to people as a Japanese American undergirds successful retirement.

MARGARET HATSUKO OGATA.   Margaret (87) is interviewed by sister-in-law Mary Tsukamoto who contributed 11 pages of biography. There are 17 pages of photos of seven children, many grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren. The 62 pages of text consist of many reminiscences of not only the interviewee but interviewer also. Margaret and family raised strawberries in prewar Florin; she did cooking for large labor crew around Bakersfield and husband did several kinds of work around Kalamazoo and St. Joseph, Michigan, her current residence. Social life revolved around other Japanese neighbors and the Buddhist and Methodist Churches in Florin.

YONEO ONO.   A Nisei man interviewed by his sister Joanne Iritani. Interned in Poston. Yoneo Ono was born in Bakersfield CA in 1925. He attended the local schools until internment in Poston, Arizona Relocation Center. He worked in the hospital and read books on philosophy and sociology during the summer. He graduated from Poston High School and later the University of Connecticut. He was the Associate Planner of the city of Fresno at which time he was an active volunteer in the rural housing and assistance programs and founded Rural Community Assistance Corp. In 1998 he presented the "Yoneo Ono" Award for rural volunteers at a convention in Seattle, and he was interviewed by his sister during his visit.  He returned to his home in Redding and died one week after the interview.   

KOKAN OSHIRO.   Oshiro (87) born in Okinawa was interviewed in Japanese. Due to age, language and involvement of several in the interpreting, translating and editing, the oral history is short with two pages of photos and 41 pages of text. After working as migrant laborer in Southern and Central California and a couple of years in Jerome and Gila River Relocation Centers, family resettled in Florin and raised strawberries. Okinawans experienced discrimination from many and mention is made of the "Okies." He is enjoying retirement with five children and eight grandchildren.

TOM OSHIRO.   Born in Japan, Mr. Oshiro, 90, and a resident of Concord, California, came to the U. S. at age 13. Thereafter, his varied life or odyssey took him over many farming areas of California as well as Kalamazoo, Michigan and Okinawa. With some language and educational deficiencies, he mentioned often being penniless. A long stretch of 32 years was in the employ of the Prost Family in San Francisco, where he could "go all over on the city bus for five cents." His nomadic experiences include domestic work, chauffeuring, and working in the fields and orchards of Central California in the face of persistent discrimination.

LYDIA OTA.   A Nisei woman interviewed by her daughter-in-law Arleen Ota. Interned in Turlock and Gila River. Lydia Ota was born in Acampo, CA in 1923 to the Kanbara family. Her father died in 1933 and her mother moved the family of seven children to Japan for almost two years. She returned to California with three children including Lydia. Her mother remarried and among the sons in the new family was Bob Ota. Lydia and Bob were married in 1942 just before internment in Turlock, California Assembly Center and Gila River Relocation Center. They left the camp to farm with friends in Nevada and Idaho. After the war, the family resumed farming in French Camp and formed a family produce business in which Lydia was involved until her retirement.

IDA OTANI.   A Nisei woman interviewed by Joanne Iritani. Father was among the railroad workers who were fired after war began. Nevada non-internee. Ida was born in Utah in 1922 to the Nishiguchi family. She attended school in various locations in Utah and Nevada and graduated from Gerlach High School where the family was the only Japanese Americans. Ida attended college in Salt Lake City. Her father worked for the railroad until he was fired in February 1942. The family was forced to vacate their company-owned housing and Ida’s father, mother and six year old sister were forced to stay in a small two-wheeled trailer in the middle of the desert, and were warned not to return to Gerlach until the sister in high school graduated in June 1942. The young graduate was escorted to the ceremonies by an armed constable.  The family then moved to Reno where her father worked on a vegetable farm. In 1952, her father, a self-taught scholar, was the first Issei in Nevada to obtain his U.S. citizenship. In March 1998 the Office of Redress Administration made families of miners and railroad workers eligible for an official apology and monetary redress under the Civil Liberties Act of 1988. Ida worked many years with Aerojet General Corp. and Sierra Community college until her retirement

FRED OUYE.   Fred (85) is one of seven pharmacists of the two Ouye families of Sacramento. Born in Florin and after Lodi High School, he attended UCSF College of Pharmacy. His older brother Harold and daughter Carol (Hisatomi) were pharmacists. Carol later went into law, but her husband, Aki, is a pharmacist. Harold and Fred sold out to Harold's son, Lloyd, who runs the business at 10th and V Streets, Sacramento. As with most Nikkei, Fred suffered considerable losses. Executive Order 9066 forced him to sell out his business in Lodi. In 1946, he again sustained great loss at 4th & L Streets, Sacramento, due to Redevelopment in 1960. All members of the two Ouye families are college graduates and professionals with most going into the pharmacy business despite hardships of obtaining education during the Great Depression as well as coping with various forms of discrimination.

KENNETH HISAO OZAWA.   Through hard work, supportive parents and family, Dr. Ozawa has become a respected member of the medical and larger Sacramento community. Both he and his wife, Leatrice, worked their way through college and higher professional education. He served in the Marine and Navy Medical Services. She was head nurse at White Memorial Hospital in Los Angeles. His philosophy was to cultivate self-respect as a Japanese American and self worth coupled with quality (Adventist) education. A positive effect of WWII (Topaz) Relocation experience was that it spread out the Nikkei community demographically and vocationally. His three daughters are also in the service professions: Carol and Dede are nurses and Amiko is a teacher.

ELIZABETH PINKERTON.   The three main parts of this oral history: early life as child growing up in a Croatian immigrant family; WWII period teaching in the Elk Grove schools and learning about Japanese Americans; and the 1978-1987 period the book, We the People: A Story of Internment in America, is being put together by Pinkerton (non-Nikkei) and Mary Tsukamoto. Also, Pinkerton (61) discusses the efforts of Mary and the consultant role she plays in helping to set up the Smithsonian Exhibit, "A More Perfect Union. The Japanese Americans and the United States Constitution." She is an author, historian and writer.

ANN RUDIN.   Mrs. Rudin was born in Passaic, New Jersey, and the early years were spent mostly in Italian immigrant communities. At Temple University, Philadelphia, she studied nursing and met her husband, Edward. She was fully "exposed" to Japanese Americans and multiculturalism after coming to California and Sacramento, the family's home for the past forty yews. The late Mary Tsukamoto, Assemblyman Nao Takasugi and Congressman Robert Matsui are mentioned often in her interview. Many years with the League of Women Voters, holding various positions, including California State presidency, was background and experience for subsequent political career culminating two terms as Mayor of Sacramento.

EIKO SAKAMOTO.   A Nisei woman interviewed by Thaya Mune Craig. Tulare and Gila River. Eiko Sakamoto was born in 1918 in Los Angeles to the Yoshihashi family. She grew up in Pasadena where her father was a gardener and her mother took in laundry.  She related, “Our parents told us to work hard at school. It was very important among Japanaese families that we work hard in school. And we did.”  In 1938 after graduating from high school, Eiko had a part time attendance clerk job in the high school office, but she was released because “some parents are complaining about your Japanaese heritage.” The family was interned in Tulare Assembly Center and Gila River Relocation Center. Eiko worked in the Community Service office in Gila River. Her father had died of cancer while interned. Eiko had an offer from the Quakers for a job with the American Friends Service Committee in Columbus, Ohio. She later had her family join her there. She met her husband at a JACL convention and lived in Loomis with his family.  She worked for Sierra Community College and has retired

MIS - SERVED OUR COUNTRY: COL. THOMAS SAKAMOTO.   The "MIS Served Our Country" book contains two oral histories: of Hiroshi Tanabe and of Sakamoto. The portion on Colonel Thomas T. Sakamoto (80), U. S. Amy Retired of Saratoga, California is mainly his speech delivered at the Florin Time of Remembrance program, March 6, 1993. His 28-year distinguished military career began February 1941 with the draft. He went through MIS Language School, saw from line duty in the South Pacific with General MacArthur, and was on board the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay for the Surrender/Peace ceremonies, August 1945. "Besides fighting the enemy on the battlefield and discrimination at home," he said, "the Nisei MIS soldiers had to contend with discrimination in the ranks." The Nisei were not fully recognized as to promotions, Purple Hearts earned, and for other acts of courage and devotion to country.

ROY SATO.   This oral history contains seven pages of photos and 57 pages of text of Sato (65), a Nisei. He was born in Stockton and family soon moved to Fresno where he attended elementary and high school. They were forced to relocate to Jerome and Rohwer Internment Camps. After the camps, he went into aircraft repair and air conditioning business after resettlement in Sacramento. Community activities include Commander of VFW Post 8985, the Methodist Church and Asian Community Center.

KIYO SATO-VIACRUCIS.   The oral history consists of four pages of photos, 129 pages of text and a resume in the appendix. She talks about many different jobs, many educational and professional nursing experiences in many places she resided in Western United States, Philippines and Japan. She came from a family of eight siblings, which she helped to raise, and her four adopted children. Being a woman was one thing, but she was a Japanese American minority woman struggling with acceptance. Much detail is brought out in the text. Japanese Americans stayed close to each other and assisted each other, especially during the return to Florin and resettlement period. She feels that the entire internment experience made one appreciate American citizenship and respect for the Constitution.

SUSUMU SATOW.   The oral history of Sus Satow contains considerable history of the 100/442nd Regimental Combat Team in action in Livorno, Bruyeres, Amo River, etc., and of Sadao Munemori, the only Congressional Medal of Honor recipient. Sus himself received the Bronze Star Medal for "meritorious service in combat." Sus was born and has resided in Sacramento except for the time in Poston Relocation Center, working on Idaho and Colorado sugar beet harvests and with the highly decorated 442nd RCT in Europe. He was an active committee member in the planning and actual construction of the Poston Memorial Monument and Kiosk. He is active in Nisei VFW Post 8985, CSUS Library Japanese American Archival Collection Committee, and 100/442/MIS Memorial Foundation in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles.

FUDEYO SEKIKAWA.   Ninety-five year old Issei woman interviewed in Japanese with daughter Bettie (58) present. Book consists of five pages of photos, 28 pages of text and seven pages of documents including family trees. Mrs. Sekikawa came to America at age 19 as a "picture bride." Except for the couple of years in Jerome-Rohwer Relocation Camps, family of eight children lived in Florin, their birthplace, raising grapes and strawberries. Husband died early at 61 in 1948 so she went to work for Oki Nurseries in Sacramento, until age 70, 

FUMIKO SHIMADA. Nisei woman who was not interned because she lived in Nevada.  Fumiko "Fumie" Shimada was interviewed because she was instrumental in obtaining redress for the railroad and mine workers who had been fired during World II.  She was born in 1939 in Sparks, Nevada to Issei parents. Her father was offered a job in the machine shop of Southern Pacific Railroad and worked in Sparks until he was fired by the company on February 18, 1942. Her father was told at that time that the Governor was unable to prevent the firing beacause it was a Presidential Order. Although he was not permitted on railroad property during wartime, he was asked to return to work the day after the war ended in August of 1945. Following the signing of the redress bill in 1988, the Office of Redress Administration of the Justice Department paid Japanese Americans who had been interned or had been prevented from returning to the west coast states.  Fumie and other railroad and mine workers families attempted to receive redress for the firing orchestrated by the government. They used newspaper articles as proof of government involvement, but were told that they were not acceptable proof. Andy Russell's Master's Thesis contained copies of papers which put the FBI directives in writing to the company president of the Northern Nevada Railroad and Mining Company. Fumie and the railroad and mine workers families were denied redress, so they went with a group from the National Coalition for Redress and Reparation (NCRR) to Washington, D.C. to plead their case. They met with Bill Lann Lee, the Acting Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. After an eight year struggle for redress, in July 1998, reparations were given to the railroad and mine workers. Fumie was persistent in researching and locating documents of corroboration of government involvement. 

CHIYO SHIMAMOTO.   A Nisei woman interviewed by Arleen Mataga. Stockton and Rohwer. Chiyo Shimamoto was born in 1921 on King Island, California to the Mitori family. Her father was a farmer in the Escalon area. Chiyo wrote a book describing her childhood experiences, To the Land of Bright Promise: The Story of a Pioneer Japanese Truck Farming Family in California’s San Joaquin Valley.  After graduation from high school, Chiyo worked as a maid in San Mateo and enrolled in the Oakland School of Hairdressing. When war began, Chiyo was interned with her family at Stockton Assembly Center and Rohwer, Arkansas Relocation Center. She left to enroll in a Beauty School in St. Paul, Minnesota and was fortunate to live with a lady, Miss Luella Miles, a retired World History teacher who introduced Chiyo to music and politics. She married a soldier in the Military Intelligence Service who went overseas before their child was born. Included in the book is a telegram to her husband in New Guinea. He was wounded and later the family moved to Lodi to a farm. Chiyo had a beauty shop for twenty-one years in Lodi. Following retirement she became active in various organizations and was a speaker at many events.

FLORENCE TAEKO SHIROMIZU.   A Nisei woman interviewed by her daughter, Helen Honda. Manzanar. Tae Shiromizu was born in 1920 in Guinda, California near Sacramento to the Hatanaka family. She attended segregated schools in Courtland and Walnut Grove and graduated from Stockton High School after the family moved to French Camp. She was married in 1940 and gave birth to her first child on the eve of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, December 6, 1941. The family was interned in Manzanar, California Relocation Center. She describes the conditions in camp and the incident when her brother, Tom Hatanaka, was wounded by a military policeman. The family left camp to work on farms in Idaho. Brother Ben was drafted into the army, and before he went overseas, the family visited the parents who were still in Manzanar. They saved their gasoline coupons for the trip. The family returned to their farm in French Camp and although the house was still standing, it needed a thorough cleaning.  Tae’s husband George died in 1958 and she was left to raise three young children.

EADA SILVERTHORNE.   Eighty-eight year old Caucasian woman supporting the work of her lawyer husband which included working among the internees at Tule Lake Camp. He worked there six months with Japanese Americans about the Loyalty Questionnaire and she taught a year at the high school. A child of Mormon missionaries with education at Brigham Young University and CSU, Sacramento, she understood minorities and related well. Tule Lake riots, breaking up of families because of the loyalty questionnaire, the Kibei situation were stressful but she expresses satisfaction with her teaching of English, Drama to the internee children. She retired after 17 years at San Juan High School. Community activities include officer positions with the League of Women Voters and the PTA.

NOBORU TAGUMA.   An account of a 20 year-old Nisei who resisted the Amy draft because his family was unconstitutionally interned during WWII. There are three pages of photos, 99 pages of text and five pages of documents. With just a high school education and from a farm family, Taguma resisted the draft and renounced his American citizenship which was restored by presidential pardon, Christmas, 1948, along with 281 other resisters. All the resisters suffered years of ostracism and were treated as outcasts, even by their own Japanese American community, but his own family stood by him. Passage of time lessens such feelings, nourishing hope and understanding. In a mood of reconciliation, the 1990 San Diego National JACL adopted a resolution recognizing the stand of the draft resisters and "they too, deserve a place of honor and respect in the history of Americans of Japanese ancestry."

TSUNE TAHARA.   An interview with very old (96) Japanese-speaking Issei woman, 10th child of a samurai, assisted by son Shiro and friend Kinya Noguchi. Two translation pages of photos we followed by 90 pages of English text and then 74 pages in roma-ji (Japanese translation phrases in English). The general drift seems for Mrs. Tahara that the two husbands she had were not much help as she separated from first husband after a short marriage and the second husband died early (1957) leaving her with the responsibility of raising six children. All her life was spent in Florin area except the WW II years were spent in Jerome-Rohwer camps. Four of the sons served in the US Amy. One died in France making her a Gold Star Mother, and his life insurance as well as the Redress money were a great help. Returning from internment camp she found the vineyard mostly dead and house broken into having to start all over, again.

BENJI TAKAHASHI.   A young English-speaking Methodist Sansei minister interviews a very elderly (95) Japanese-speaking Methodist Issei. Assisting with the interpreting is wife, Florence, and daughter Naomi. There are four pages of photos, 25 pages of text with some of the responses in roma'-ji (Japanese phrases in English). Benji indicates he is happy to be living in a small Christian town like Loomis where he and Florence (Takagishi) were married in 1926. He came from Japan at age 20 and worked at his uncle's Loomis general store all the time except for a couple of years he was forced into Tule Lake Amache Internment Camp. And of necessity working in the general store he became tri-lingual by speaking Japanese, English and Spanish. His hobbies were haiku and fishing.

HOMER YOSHIO TAKAHASHI.   A Nisei man interviewed by James E. Craig. Enlisted in October 1941.  The family was interned in Arboga, Tule Lake and Amache. Homer Takahashi was born in 1918. In the early 1900s, his grandparents brought the family from Japan and established a retail business in 1910. Homer attended the local schools, and Placer High School and Junior College in Auburn. In October 1941, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and began his service in the horse cavalry. He had never ridden a horse before so he picked that. His father had been hospitalized and died before the family was interned. Homer got leave to help the family and took them to the bus to go Arboga Assembly Center. The family was transferred to Tule Lake and Amache Relocation Centers. Three of the other four brothers joined the military while they were interned and served in various units.  Homer saw combat in Italy and France. The family returned to Loomis where there were signs reading, “We do not serve Japs.” Homer attended the University of Illinois on the GI Bill

PAUL TAKEHARA.   This Nisei (73) is a strictly Sacramento/Florin resident except for the WWII period. He served in the military from March 1941 - December 1945 and never spent any time in a Relocation Center. He was at many military bases in several states and did a short stint in Europe. Paul's family was interned in Tule Lake and his wife lived in Chicago. They resettled in Florin where two sons and a daughter were born and raised. He was active in the Florin JACL serving as president many times and worked hard for Redress. Also, he is a charter member of Nisei Post VFW 8985 and was Commander in 1954-55 and member of the Mayhew Baptist Church. He was in the grocery business and sold insurance during his later years before retirement.

HENRY TAKETA.   Educated Nisei man (76) is interviewed by a Sacramento City College student who learned much about Japanese Americans and human relations in general. There are five photos, 82 pages of text and six pages of documents. Taketa died in 1991 and the oral history was finished by wife, Sally, who enters the interview near the end. Taketa talks about not only his own personal experiences on prejudice, loyalty, Tule Lake, etc., but contributes more comprehensive comments on the subject. His intelligence and legal education made him a useful and stabilizing influence. He helped many during Resettlement and after, until retirement, legal pro bono and otherwise. Toward the end there is a discussion between husband and wife, and the very end is lost.

MIS - SERVED OUR COUNTRY: HIROSHI HAROLD TANABE.   This is the second part of the oral history, "MIS: Served Our Country." Hiroshi Tanabe (78), born in Norwalk, California, now a resident of Sacramento, is a Purple Heart veteran. The text is from his notes used in Joe Harrington's book, Yankee Samurai: The Secret Role of the Nisei in America's Pacific Victory, 1979. A Kibei, he received his early education through high school in Japan, came to Salt Lake City, was drafted, went through MIS Language training and was sent overseas to Australia where he had front line duty. He also participated in the Korean War and was stationed at Monterey, California. After discharge in 1951, he worked at the Sacramento Army Depot until retirement in 1987.

THE TANAKA SISTERS.   This oral history is about Myma Hitomi, Myrtle Furukawa, and Teri Mizusaka growing up together with brothers Wilbert (deceased) and George in the local Florin area. It was a very close knit family with Japanese spoken most of the time and many Japanese customs observed, such as using "ofuro" and enjoying "Osho gatsu." Their parents taught them "on" and "giri" which was passed onto their Sansei children. Two "dark times in their otherwise happy lives were the hard times of the depression of the l930s and the terrible, traumatic three years or so spent in WW II concentration camps. The doing of this oral history, recalling the good parental and sibling relationships, and generally reminiscing about the past was an enjoyable experience for them.

ALFRED TSUKAMOTO.   Alfred, 83, is a Florin native and his early education was obtained at the segregated Florin Grammar School. His formal schooling ended after finishing Elk Grove High School and one semester at Sacramento City College, as he had to help on the family strawberry and grape farm. After one and one-half years in Jerome, Arkansas camp, the family with wife, Mary, and daughter, Marielle, moved to Kalamazoo, Michigan, and eventually returned to Florin. He was a leader in the Florin JACL, with Redress, Florin Reunions and the Methodist Church. He was the JACL chapter's third president in 1937 and first postwar president in 1947. He retired in 1979 after 30 years with the Army Depot.

MARY TSUKAMOTO.   Mary Tsukamoto (1915 - 1998) was active to the day of her death at almost 83. Born of Okinawa immigrants, she was known and honored nationwide as educator, community leader and civil rights activist despite an arthritic condition. Together with husband, Al, they were active in the Methodist Church and Florin JACL. An elementary school is named in her honor and her writings, documents and artifacts started the Japanese American Collection at California State University Sacramento Library Archives. The book, We the People, A Story of Internment in America, was co-authored with Elizabeth Pinkerton. The Mary Tsukamoto Japanese Language Academy was just recently started.

TOMOYE TSUKAMOTO.   Tomoye Tsukamoto (90) was the wife of the late Walter Tsukamoto, first president of the Sacramento JACL Chapter (1934-36) and National JACL President (1938-39). Her father, Ryosuke Kasai, came to the United States in 1898, graduated from high school, and lost everything in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Tomoye was born in 1907 in Berkeley, graduated from high school and UC Berkeley. She married Walter who had graduated from UC Berkeley Boalt Law School in 1930 and established a law practice in Sacramento. The family of five children, all born in Sacramento, was forced to evacuate to Tule Lake. Due to the activities of the pro-Japan group and possibility of great harm, Walter was "secretly rushed out of camp on a train to Cincinnati because of his pro-American and JACL stand." Tomoye and the children joined him later. She says, "We moved thirteen times" and the last move was to Germany where he died in 1961 with the rank of Colonel on military Judge Advocate assignment.

WILLIAM TUTTLE.   A Caucasian man, Director of Welfare at Gila River, Arizona Relocation Center.  Interviewed by Joanne Iritani. William Tuttle was born in 1913 in Sacramento.  He attended local schools, graduated from Stanford University, received his MA from the University of Chicago and worked in the University of California’s Graduate School of Social Work in Berkeley in early 1942. When World War II began, he was assigned to interview long lines of Japanese in Vallejo. He had to inform them “you can only take what you can carry,” he was “so angry at what had happened to the Japanese Americans” that he went to work at Gila River, Arizona Relocation Center in November 1942 as the Director of Welfare. Mr. Tuttle related various incidents during his work at Gila River. He also explained the process he established by which three thousand internees were moved to Gila River from Jerome Relocation Center, the first camp to close. In January 1945, he worked for the War Relocation Authority to assist the Japanese who were returning to the Oakland, California area. Mr. Tuttle is an active retiree in Nevada City, California.

LILY UMEDA.   Poignant stories of Japanese Americans like Lily Umeda are a part of American history. Mrs. Umeda (82) has made the best of difficult situations she had no control over. She was born in Sacramento, and sent to live with relatives in Wakayama, Japan, where she went through elementary school. Then, she was brought back to Hollywood, California, where she attended high school as well as Girls High School in San Francisco. At age 19, she took on adult and parent responsibilities after an arranged marriage to Mike Umeda of Sacramento and raised four children. After time in Relocation center, the family came back to Florin. She became a valuable, dedicated Methodist Church member by helping with youth activities, bazaars, and interpreting and translation work.

UTO UYEYAMA.   This is more of a biography than oral history. Ichiro Nakashima put this together from a series of his 1992 Seventh Day Adventist quarterly periodical about Uyeyama. There are six pages of photos, twenty pages of text and two pages of testimonials from her children. Content is about two groups Okinawans and Japanese; and about Methodist Church and Seventh Day Adventist Church. It is about her two daughters from the first marriage and the eight children from the subsequent Uyeyama marriage. Generally, an interesting account of the life and struggles of early Japanese immigrant to "not friendly to Asians" America.

WAEGELL FAMILY (MARGARET, GEORGE, JAMES AND JACK).   Few oral histories of these Waegell siblings are in this one book of 19 pages of photos and 112 pages of text with that of George taking up 47 pages. Etsu Yui interviewed Margaret in 1991 and the remaining three were done by Vi Hatano in 1994. The father Joseph Waegell migrated from Alsace-Lorraine in 1910 to Sacramento. The mother, Margaret Tiessen, was born in England and came to Sacramento via San Francisco and married Joseph in 1912. They settled into farming on Eagles Nest Road area where all five children were born and where the four youngest currently reside in retirement. The oral histories mention many Japanese American neighbors and classmates in the local elementary and high school. George (68) mentions writing letters on behalf of Redress. He served 19 months of a three-year sentence at McNeil Island Federal Penitentiary for refusing to serve in the military. Margaret's (69) text mentions helping Internees with resettlement. She was a teacher in the Elk Grove High School and Sacramento Unified School District. James (68, twin of George) mentions involvement in mochi making with several families. Jack (66) talks of Nisei classmates as "small and smart" and shopping at Takehara's store. All felt the forced incarceration of the Japanese Americans was wrong. They were at the railroad station to see the internees off.

REVEREND LLOYD AND MARION WAKE Lloyd Wake is a Nisei who was interviewed because he was an ordained minister of the United Methodist Church and a leader in the Bay Area in matters of human and civil rights. He was also a leader in the Japanese and Asian Caucuses of the church in the northern California area. He was born and raised in the Reedley and Dinuba areas in the Central Valley near Fresno, California. After graduating from high school in 1939, Lloyd worked on the farm and played on the Nisei baseball team. He had assumed his role in the family of two boys and six girls was to take care of the farm for his parents. After World War II began and notices of the incarceration were posted, Lloyd went to San Francisco to move the arts and antique inventory of his sister and her husband who owned a store of imported goods. The articles were stored in the large family home in Dinuba. The family was removed by the government to Poston III Relocation Center.

Marion Wake was born and raised in Southern California to Issei parents. Her father served in the U.S. Coast Guard and was among the veterans who obtained United States citizenship granted with the 1935 Nye-Lee bill to about 500 Asians, mostly of Japanese ancestry, who had served honorably with the U.S. armed forces during World War I. He had various jobs among which was cooking for Cecil B. De Mille. Marion described the family's difficult times, the poor housing, and also the fun times of her childhood. Her mother became very ill and died of cancer when Marion was thirteen. Her younger brother was only three, so she became his caretaker. Her brother, Bobby, became ill with the chicken pox on departure day to Santa Anita Assembly Center and she was permitted to accompany her brother to the hospital. After a few weeks, their father drove the family in their car to Santa Anita Assembly Center and they began life in the unsanitary conditions of the horse stable.

Marion and Lloyd graduated from Asbury College in Kentucky, married and moved to Berkeley where Lloyd attended seminary. Marion worked in San Francisco and Lloyd was later appointed to the Pine Methodist Church in San Francisco. Marion obtained her teaching credential and worked in various schools and programs.

HIDEKO WAKITA.    Short oral history of Issei widow (83) with four pages of photos, 19 of text, and 2 1/2 pages of biography by interviewer. Wakita was brought to America by grandmother at age ten, attended Sierra School and mentions difficulty learning English. Father already in Florin; died in 1991 and mother died in Japan 1933 at 52 years. Family raised grapes and went into raising cattle, which was more profitable. Had three daughters and eight grandchildren. Interned in Jerome and Gila River Relocation camps.

CHII WATANABE.   An Issei woman interviewed by Lydia Ota. Interned in Manzanar and Tule Lake. Mrs. Chii Watanabe was born in Japan in 1905 and came to America after an arranged marriage. She had to leave by May 1924 due to the Japanese Exclusion Act, which was slated to be effective in July. The couple lived on Liberty Island in the delta where her husband was a farmer.  She said of that time, “Whether I loved him or not, it can’t be helped any more. I’m married now, and I’ve started my family....To go back to Japan was a dream.” After their internment, the family worked in various locations and returned to the French Camp area. The family had a farm trainee program for young men from Japan.  

MASA YAMAMOTO.   Dr. Yamamoto (72), Kibei, is interviewed at length about a wide range of topics. He is Kibei but claims to be more Issei and studied English even when taking pre-med and medical courses. There are six pages of photos, 114 pages of text and three pages of documents. Text covers education, medical education, marriage, practice of medicine and sports in America of self and family and comparisons to such in Japan. In America, winning is most important, but in Japan emphasis is on honor and respect. He volunteered as the high school football physician for several years and was the local judo physician at their major events. He taught kendo, for most of his adult life.

SHIRLEY YATES.    All Internees and the Japanese American community greatly appreciate the support and friendship of non-Nikkei such as Mrs. Yates. Now age 72, she was the young wife of Jesse Gregg, Associate Chief of Internal Security at Poston, Arizona Relocation Center. Born and raised in rural Ohio, she knew nothing of Japanese Americans. In this oral history, she recalls being a little apprehensive during her first days living in the Poston camp. After some effort and in time, she overcame this and finally reached an understanding and appreciation of the Internees and Japanese Americans as real friends to this day. Widowed, she became Mrs. Yates in 1959 and is retired in Placerville, California.

CHIYO YOGI.   Those who felt wronged and subjected to all sorts of hardships during WW II in one of ten relocation camps will get a different feeling after reading this oral history of Chiyo Yogi of Roseville, California. Born in Maui, Hawaii, Mrs. Yogi (86) spent the war years in Okinawa. This oral history is the result of a combination of her husband Tatsusei's diary and her recollections of her personal and family experiences during the intense battle of Okinawa. They were constantly on the move, seeking refuge in caves, huts, and bushes, trying to seek protection from air raids and frequent rains. She tells of going days on a diet of sugar cane, raw potatoes with horsemeat now and then, and the death of her grandfather and son Takenobu.

MATSUYE YOKOI.   Aged (90) Issei widow interviewed in Japanese. Oral history book consists of three pages of photos and 40 pages of text. Prewar and postwar years were spent on Mayhew farm in East Sacramento raising grapes and strawberries. Family's property was left in care of Caucasian neighbor during WW II while they were in Poston Relocation Center. She mentions having 18 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. Two sons served in the U. S. Army. She enjoys the Buddhist Church and attends regularly, even at age 90.

RICHARD YOSHIKAWA.   A Nisei man interviewed by his daughter Aeko Yoshikawa Fenelon. Stockton and Rohwer. Richard Yoshikawa was born in Stockton in 1920 to parents who owned and operated a restaurant, then a barbershop. His mother was a picture bride who was a barber with her husband in their shop. Richard recalled his entertainment at that time was, “Work, work, and more work.” He attended the local schools and the Art Center School of Photography in Los Angeles where he was enrolled at the time war began. When travel restrictions were placed on Nisei in 1942, he quit school to join his family in Stockton and was interned in Stockton Assembly Center and Rohwer, Arkansas Relocation Center, where he worked as an X-ray technician. In 1943, he went to New York City where he attended photography school. He returned to the family home in Stockton in 1945.  He married in 1947 and opened a commercial photography studio, Yoshikawa Studio. In 1964 Richard was appointed to be a Trustee on the San Joaquin Delta Community College Board, successfully campaigned for re-election and served a total of ten years.  In 1974, he was appointed by Governor Reagan to the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors.  He won re-election and served ten years on this board. The appendix contains letters, election fliers and newspaper articles. 

HARRY YOSHIMURA.   Issei widower (89) with good command of English and Japanese. There are three pages of photos, 46 of text, and 19 pages of Japanese documents not captioned/explained. Most of contents is about "shigin" (poetry in Japanese chant) throughout the book and especially pages 17-33. He is the master teacher and initially learned it in Tule Lake Internment Camp along with "senryu" (Japanese poetry). Shigin and Senryu require knowledge of Japanese language and culture. Prewar, he was in Portland, Oregon doing various kinds of work. Postwar spent in Northern California and especially around Penryn raising fruits; now retired in Sacramento.