Returning home

When the camps closed, Japanese Americans were handed $25 and put on trains headed for the places they had been forcibly removed from nearly four years earlier. Harassment was common -- many returning Japanese Americans were greeted with signs reading "No Japs Allowed." Other discovered their property had been vandalized or stolen. Homes and businesses that had been boarded up or left in the care of others were abandoned and stripped of furnishings and goods. For the majority, who did not have homes to return to, housing was the most serious problem. Housing discrimination was severe in many areas and persisted to varying degrees until the civil rights legislation of the 1960s. Former camp inmates with no other options moved into hostels and converted community institutions with conditions not much better than the camps they had just left. Although this period was stressful, it is remembered as a time when people came together to share what they had.

Returning home (911)

Related articles from the Densho Encyclopedia :
Alien land laws, Hood River incident, Kazuo Masuda, Return to West Coast

911 items
Oregon Buddhist Church Bingo (ddr-one-1-423)
img Oregon Buddhist Church Bingo (ddr-one-1-423)
Black and white photographic negative of a bingo game with prizes displayed in the center. Event hosted by the Oregon Buddhist Church (now know as the Oregon Buddhist Temple). Bingo workers from left to right: Aki (Shiraishi) Dong, Ben Kasubuchi, unidentified, and Betty Nakashimada. Sitting in far left corner talking with Aki (Shiraishi) Dong is Mary ...
Young Buddhist League Convention Court and Queen (ddr-one-1-26)
img Young Buddhist League Convention Court and Queen (ddr-one-1-26)
Black and white photographic print of the Fourth Annual Northwest Young Buddhist League's Convection Court and Queen. Left to Right: Mae (Okazaki) Sasaki of Tacoma, Washington; Margaret Tomoguchi of Seattle, Washington; Mary (Nakata) Fujii of Portland, Oregon (Queen); Sumi (Hashimoto) Kurokawa, and Takako Nitta of Spokane, Washington. This photograph was found in Frank Hirahara's memorabilia of ...
Portland Rose Festival Parade float-
img Portland Rose Festival Parade float- "PGE" (ddr-one-1-503)
Color slide of a Rose Festival Parade float driving down SW Third Ave in front of a large crowd gathered outside a Signal gas station and San Francisco Tailor, behind the Signal gas station is the old Multnomah Hotel. The float depicts a knight with a shield that has PGE written on it, riding on a ...
Portland Streetcar (ddr-one-1-543)
img Portland Streetcar (ddr-one-1-543)
Color slide of an old Portland Streetcar that once went to Council Crest. The streetcar is white and red and is numbered 506. The front bumper reads "See Portland from Council Crest." The streetcar sits in an open field at Council Crest Park. According to donor processed on June 14, 1964. For black and white negative ...
Community Picnic (ddr-one-1-387)
img Community Picnic (ddr-one-1-387)
Black and white photographic negative of five people sitting around a picnic table during a community picnic at Viking Park hosted by the Oregon Buddhist Church (now known as the Oregon Buddhist Temple). From left to right: Robert “Bob” Sunamoto, Jack Ouchida, Yosh Hasuike, Sachi Hasuike and unidentified.
Portland Rose Festival Parade- Pistol Creek Fire Department (ddr-one-1-179)
img Portland Rose Festival Parade- Pistol Creek Fire Department (ddr-one-1-179)
Color slide of the Pistol Creek Fire Department pulling along a small wagon in front of a crowd outside the Blue Eagle Cafe on W Burnside and NW Second Ave. A sign for Dr. Geo Chan office is visible in the background. The men are dressed in red long-johns and rubber boots. The Rose Festival Parade ...
Portland Rose Festival Parade- Baton twirler (ddr-one-1-549)
img Portland Rose Festival Parade- Baton twirler (ddr-one-1-549)
Color slide of a girl in a red uniform and white boots marching down W Burnside in front of a crowd outside Chinese Medicine Co. building near NW Second Ave in the Portland Rose Festival Parade. She is twirling a baton. In the background a marching band in red uniforms is visible. The Portland Rose Festival ...
Geisha Girl (ddr-one-1-435)
img Geisha Girl (ddr-one-1-435)
Black and white original photographic print of an unidentified woman dressed in a kimono with hair and makeup done in a traditional geisha style. A large parasol is placed beside her on the stage of the Oregon Buddhist Church (now known as the Oregon Buddhist Temple.)
Portland Rose Festival Parade- float 10
img Portland Rose Festival Parade- float 10 "Pasadena Tournament of Roses" (ddr-one-1-499)
Color slide of Rose Festival Parade float 10 driving down SW Third Ave in front of a large crowd gathered outside a Signal gas station and San Francisco Tailor, behind the Signal gas station is the old Multnomah Hotel. The float is decorated in pink and white flowers. A woman stands near the back of the ...
Record DJ (ddr-one-1-97)
img Record DJ (ddr-one-1-97)
Black and white photographic negative of Jayne (Katada) Furukawa at a record table with 78 rpm records. She and Oscar Murahashi are exchanging a record.
Northwest Methodist Rally Portland (ddr-one-1-74)
img Northwest Methodist Rally Portland (ddr-one-1-74)
Original black and white photographic print of the attendees of the Northwest Methodist Rally in Portland on November 23-25, 1951. The group is posed in front of the old Epworth Methodist Church building. Inscription on photograph reads "Northwest Methodist Rally Portland Nov. 23-25, 1951". Front row left to right starting third from left: Rupert Fujii, Shig ...
Obon Festival- Odori folk dance (ddr-one-1-291)
img Obon Festival- Odori folk dance (ddr-one-1-291)
Black and white photographic negative of Patricia “Pat” (Ikata) Iboshi dancing an Odori folk dance at Obon. Obon is an annual event hosted by the Oregon Buddhist Church (now known as Oregon Buddhist Temple) and attended by the wider Nikkei community..
Nisei at Epworth United Methodist Church (ddr-one-1-341)
img Nisei at Epworth United Methodist Church (ddr-one-1-341)
Black and white photographic negative of Nisei at Epworth United Methodist Church most likely during the Northwest Methodist Rally. Nisei are gathered around a table filling out sheets of paper. Standing at the head of the table leaning over the table is Elsie (Morita) Onishi. Standing on the left side of the table, leaning over filling ...
Brooks Andrews Interview Segment 9 (ddr-densho-1001-7-9)
vh Brooks Andrews Interview Segment 9 (ddr-densho-1001-7-9)
Thoughts on hardships faced by Japanese Americans returning to the West Coast after the war
Willie K. Ito Interview Segment 19 (ddr-manz-1-149-19)
vh Willie K. Ito Interview Segment 19 (ddr-manz-1-149-19)
Returning to San Francisco and witnessing changes in the Japantown area
Junkoh Harui Segment 17 (ddr-densho-1000-11-17)
vh Junkoh Harui Segment 17 (ddr-densho-1000-11-17)
Positive memories of returning to school on Bainbridge Island, Washington after leaving camp

This interview was done outdoors in the Bainbridge Gardens Nursery which resulted in increased background noise and frequent interruptions by the business P.A. system.

May K. Sasaki Segment 26 (ddr-densho-1000-79-26)
vh May K. Sasaki Segment 26 (ddr-densho-1000-79-26)
Returning to Seattle, finding temporary living quarters in the local "dojo"
API