Agriculture

Many Issei (first-generation Japanese immigrants) began as sharecroppers. Others sought to buy land, but the Issei had to overcome obstacles preventing them from competing with white farmers. California and other states passed alien land laws prohibiting Asian immigrants from purchasing or leasing agricultural land. There were ways around the discriminatory laws: an Issei father could put the property in the name of his American-born child, or issei could form corporations in which a majority of the shareholders were American citizens. Despite the alien land laws, Issei farmers played a significant role in West Coast agriculture. In the years just prior to World War II, Japanese American families grew 35 percent of the produce in California. By the 1920s, Japanese Americans supplied 75 percent of the produce and half the milk to the Puget Sound region.

Industry and employment (210)
Agriculture (296)
Farmers' markets and stands (31)
Chick sexing
Dairy farming (10)
Farming (155)
Flower growers (24)
Migrant labor (1)
Plantations (2)
Strawberries (21)

Related articles from the Densho Encyclopedia :
Seabrook Farms

296 items
Seichi Hayashida Segment 9 (ddr-densho-1000-14-9)
vh Seichi Hayashida Segment 9 (ddr-densho-1000-14-9)
Deciding to work in family's farm instead of attending college
Kay Matsuoka Segment 3 (ddr-densho-1000-48-3)
vh Kay Matsuoka Segment 3 (ddr-densho-1000-48-3)
Childhood memories: working on the family farm, attending school, and receiving training in Japanese culture and customs
Japanese American farmers prior to mass removal (ddr-densho-151-124)
img Japanese American farmers prior to mass removal (ddr-densho-151-124)
Original caption: San Leandro, California. Family labor transplanting young tomato plants under canvas about ten days prior to evacuation of residents of Japanese ancestry to Assembly Centers.
Family on their farm (ddr-densho-153-16)
img Family on their farm (ddr-densho-153-16)
Amy Matsushita and parents Kyoko Amitani Matsushita and Yasutaro Matsushita.
Transplanting produce in hotbeds (ddr-densho-18-57)
img Transplanting produce in hotbeds (ddr-densho-18-57)
When farm areas were flooded, it was sometimes necessary to transfer produce, as shown here.
Two Japanese Americans picking strawberries (ddr-densho-2-26)
img Two Japanese Americans picking strawberries (ddr-densho-2-26)
Shown here are Peggie Yorita and Sho Nakagawa of the Yamashita Shipping Company in a strawberry field.
Woman in a tomato field (ddr-densho-2-21)
img Woman in a tomato field (ddr-densho-2-21)
Peggie Yorita holds a bucket of tomatoes from her parents' farm.
Hand-drawn map of prewar Auburn, Washington (ddr-densho-25-99)
doc Hand-drawn map of prewar Auburn, Washington (ddr-densho-25-99)
This map was drawn by Mae Iseri Yamada. It shows some of the Japanese-owned farms in the Auburn area before World War II.
White brother and sister picking strawberries (ddr-densho-259-249)
img White brother and sister picking strawberries (ddr-densho-259-249)
Caption by Homer Yasui: "This was 'Peggy' Smith on the left, and her brother Chandler Smith on the right, and they were picking strawberries on our Willow Flat farm."
Japanese family visiting a farm (ddr-densho-259-261)
img Japanese family visiting a farm (ddr-densho-259-261)
Unidentified visitors to the Yasui family's farm in Willow Flat, Oregon.
Japanese visitors at a fruit packing house (ddr-densho-259-255)
img Japanese visitors at a fruit packing house (ddr-densho-259-255)
Caption by Homer Yasui: "[Masuo Yasui] and a group of 3 Japanese visitors and a young Japanese girl [Masuo] was showing the visitors what our fruit sorting conveyor belt looked like in the packing house at Willow Flat."
Gidra, Vol. I, No. 3 (June 1969) (ddr-densho-297-3)
doc Gidra, Vol. I, No. 3 (June 1969) (ddr-densho-297-3)
Selected article titlese: "The Persecution Rests" (p. 1), "CS, It's a Gas!" (p. 1), "Reflections in a Slanted Eye" (p. 2), "Grapes Are Coming!" (p. 4).
Current view of barn on former Issei dairy farm (ddr-densho-35-37)
img Current view of barn on former Issei dairy farm (ddr-densho-35-37)
An Issei couple operated a large dairy farm in a town formerly known as Days, Washington. The property line extended beyond the area shown here. With the advent of World War II, they were forced to sell their property for a fraction of its worth. This is the barn previously owned by the couple. Days, Washington ...
Current view of barn on former Issei dairy farm (ddr-densho-35-35)
img Current view of barn on former Issei dairy farm (ddr-densho-35-35)
An Issei couple operated a large dairy farm in a town formerly known as Days, Washington. With the advent of World War II, the they were forced to sell their farm for a fraction of its worth. This is the barn that housed most of the cows once owned by couple. Days, Washington no longer exists ...
Three women on a farm (ddr-densho-9-3)
img Three women on a farm (ddr-densho-9-3)
Left to right: Teruko Hoshino, Katsuyo Hoshino, and Mitsue Shiraishi.
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