NPS solicits public comment on the future of the Tule Lake Unit

The National Park Service held a planning meeting for the general public in San Francisco Japantown regarding the Tule Lake Unit of the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument. The Sept. 19 meeting, held at Nihonmachi Terrace, is one of more than a dozen that were held along the West Coast, along […]

Nisei cartoonist Jack Matsuoka dies at 87 His book about Poston educated young readers about the camps

SAN JOSE — Jack Matsuoka, a Nisei cartoonist whose drawings of camp life have helped educate the public about the Japanese American incarceration experience, passed away on Aug. 26 at his residence in San Jose with his family present. He was 87. He had been in poor health since suffering a stroke while attending the […]

State Legislature passes resolution apologizing to fired employees

On Aug. 19, the California state Assembly approved a resolution to apologize to former Japanese Americans fired by the state in 1942. Following that, the California State Senate passed the resolution Sept. 4. The Assembly Concurrent Resolution 19, authored by Assembly member Richard Pan (D-Sacramento), issues an official public apology to Japanese Americans who were […]

THE GREAT UNKNOWN AND THE UNKNOWN GREAT: Sen. Sanji Abe’s ‘tragic’ story, and the ‘hollow’ case for the wartime incarceration

This week’s chapter covers the tragic story of Sen. Sanji Abe as a way of understanding the plight of Japanese Americans in Hawai‘i during World War II. People who study Executive Order 9066 and the Japanese American wartime concentration camp experience often present as contrast the treatment of Japanese Americans in the Territory of Hawai‘i. […]

THE GREAT UNKNOWN AND THE UNKNOWN GREAT: Deciphering the truth behind the JACL’s ‘800-pound gorilla’

This week’s column revisits a bit of “unknown history” and tries to determine whether it is true. Let me explain. On March 18, 2011, former Japanese American Citizens League Executive Director John Tateishi published a column in the Pacific Citizen. In this column, Tateishi recalled growing up critical of the JACL because of its policy […]

One man’s pursuit of his civil rights amid wartime hysteria

A Principled Stand: the Story of Hirabayashi v. United States By Gordon K. Hirabayashi, with James A. Hirabayashi and Lane Ryo Hirabayashi (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2013, 232 pp., $29.95, hardcover) Note: This review is adapted from an unpublished report the review author did on an earlier version of the manuscript of this book. […]

A historical anthology on redress

NEGLECTED LEGACIES: Japanese American Women and the Redress/Reparations Movement Edited by Lane Ryo Hirabayashi Special issue of “PAN-JAPAN: The International Journal of the Japanese Diaspora” Normal, Ill.: (Spring/Fall 2011: Volume 7, Numbers 1 & 2, 197 pp., $12.50, paperback) In this 2011 PAN-JAPAN special issue, guest editor Lane Ryo Hirabayashi, an Asian American studies professor […]

A stirring memoir of adolescent Manzanar stories weaved with senior hiking adventures

MANZANAR TO MOUNT WHITNEY: The Life and Times of a Lost Hiker By Hank Umemoto (Berkeley, Calif.: Heyday, Books 2013, 224 pp., $16.95, paperback) My first trip of many to the World War II Manzanar concentration camp site occurred in the spring of 1972. On that occasion I accompanied my California State University, Fullerton, Nisei […]

The importance of Japanese American baseball

Nikkei Baseball: Japanese American Players from Immigration and Internment to the Major Leagues By Samuel O. Regalado (Champaign, Ill.: University of Illinois Press, 2013, 208 pp., $80, cloth, $25, paperback) From its roots in Meiji era Japan, history professor Samuel O. Regalado traces Nikkei baseball’s journey from Japan to Hawai‘i, and then to the Pacific […]

NPS Grants $1.3 Million to preserve, interpret Japanese American Confinement Sites

WASHINGTON — National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis announced in a U.S. Department of the Interior statement issued July 11 more than $1.3 million in grants to help preserve and interpret the sites where some 120,000 persons of Japanese descent — two-thirds of them U.S. citizens — were imprisoned during World War II. “Our […]

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