THROUGH YONSEI EYES: DEAR ASIAN AMERICANS: An open letter and guide-in-progress on being a productive ally to African Americans by a devastated and outraged Asian American

Are you also devastated and outraged? You should be. That’s just the start. So, what’s next? How can the Asian American community mobilize to be productive and supportive to the Black community right now? I’m not claiming to be a perfect ally/activist, or that this is the definitive guide to being an ally in 2020, […]

FINDING YOUR NIKKEI ROOTS: Organizing your genealogy files

Camp records. Census records. Death certificates. Pedigree charts. Photographs. Probate files. At some point, you will realize that you have an ever-growing collection of family history documents. Do you have a filing system that works? Or do you have a disorganized mess of unlabeled items? Perhaps you use the “stack of papers on the dining room table” filing system. Or, the “stick it in one folder on your computer desktop” method.

DISSENT: Coronavirus is especially dangerous for those in prisons, jails, and immigration detention

Every day, government officials take more drastic steps to contain the coronavirus, including shelter-in-place orders, shutdowns of bars and restaurants and preparing college dorms to serve as makeshift hospitals. But shockingly, ICE and some law enforcement agencies are largely going on with business as usual. According to the Los Angeles Times, ICE agents are continuing to arrest immigrants, including a 56-year old man who is the sole breadwinner for his family; the agents arrested him when he left his home to work and buy groceries that would have prepared his family for coronavirus lockdowns. And while a number of sheriffs and police departments are wisely choosing to ramp down enforcement of low-level offenses, many are continuing to book people into jail for minor misconduct.

FINDING YOUR NIKKEI ROOTS: Navigating genealogy Websites — Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org

Genealogical information can be found in a plethora of locations. Of course, not everything is online, but quite a bit IS available digitally. There are many sources of online material, including public and private libraries, universities, Internet Archive, Library of Congress (LoC.gov), the National Archives (Archives.gov) and Densho.org. Some of the best searches begin simply […]

THROUGH YONSEI EYES: Friendsgiving

Many English teachers in Japan have a tough time during the holidays. It’s times like these when we realize how much we need each other here. I look around the room and become overwhelmed by how deeply I love the people around me.

DISSENT: Stephen Miller’s white supremacy should alarm JAs

New ColumnPart of a host of new editorial features funded by a grant from The Henri and Tomoye Takahashi Charitable Foundation, the Nichi Bei Weekly is proud to announce the launch of a new civil rights-oriented column, “Dissent,” written by New York-based ACLU attorney Carl Takei, a native of Sacramento, Calif. The Washington Post recently […]

FINDING YOUR NIKKEI ROOTS: Once Upon a Time — Preserve your family history through storytelling

Family stories are just as important to your family history as names, dates and places. Perhaps they are even more important because the stories are what connect past generations to future ones. According to Aaron Holt, an archives technician at the National Archives in Fort Worth, Texas, “it only takes three generations to lose a piece of oral family history… it must be purposely and accurately repeated over and over again through the generations to be preserved for a genealogist today.”

FINDING YOUR NIKKEI ROOTS: Preserve your treasures before it’s too late

April 18, 1906. San Francisco was struck by an earthquake, followed by a devastating fire, which left hundreds of thousands homeless, and which destroyed all of the public records at city hall. Oct. 19, 1991. The Oakland firestorm incinerated nearly 3,000 single-family homes. Nov. 8, 2018. The Camp Fire obliterated 95 percent of the town […]

OBITUARY: Florence Toshiko Fujinaga

FUJINAGA, FLORENCE TOSHIKO, 94, entered Nirvana on April 26, 2019. She was born in Penryn on June 8, 1924 to the late Ichisaku and Sen Iseki. She was preceded in death by her husband, Rev. Kakumin Fujinaga, her brothers Harry and George Iseki and sister Norma Kochi. She is survived by her daughter Satomi (Ed) […]

FINDING YOUR NIKKEI ROOTS: Researching ‘war brides’

…thousands of GIs stationed (or on leave) in Japan, both during and after the occupation, returned home with Japanese wives. Some of these men were Nisei soldiers. There were many reasons why Japanese women married American men. Obviously, many of the couples married for love. But some of the women may have been trying to escape a life of uncertainty in postwar Japan. For some, the allure of a perceived exotic life in a land of riches beckoned them. Others were looking for adventure. Regardless of the reasoning, their stories are interesting and worth documenting.

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