Pre-World War II service

Prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor, approximately 5,000 Japanese Americans were already in the U.S. Army, most having been drafted. When war broke out, some Nisei soldiers were discharged, while others were placed in noncombat positions at Camp Robinson, Arkansas. Still others were overlooked by the military bureaucracy and continued in their positions. During this chaotic time, all other Nisei were reclassified 4-C, the status of "enemy alien," and therefore became ineligible for the draft.

Military service (70)
Pre-World War II service (45)

Related articles from the Densho Encyclopedia :
Fighting for Tomorrow: Japanese Americans in America's Wars (exhibition), Samuel Wilder King, Tokutaro Slocum, Walter Tsukamoto

45 items
Letter from Cedrick M. Shimo to the Office of Redress Admnistration [Administration], December 4, 1990 (ddr-csujad-24-73)
doc Letter from Cedrick M. Shimo to the Office of Redress Admnistration [Administration], December 4, 1990 (ddr-csujad-24-73)
A letter from Cedrick Shimo to the Office of Redress Administration arguing that Manabi Matoba is entitled to a redress payment. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: chi_05_007
[Newspaper articles from
doc [Newspaper articles from "Pacific citizen"] (ddr-csujad-1-192)
Newspaper clippings from "Pacific citizen" published on November 22, 1991. Includes two articles collecting Nisei Military Intelligent Service's experience. "Surviving and spying behind enemy lines" written by Harry K. Honda, Senior editor, Pacific Citizen, describes Sakakida's story of wartime intrigue, which was delivered at the MIS 50th anniversary reunion dinner on October 31, 1991. "Anecdotes by ...
Tadashi Kanemoto interview (ddr-csujad-6-11)
doc Tadashi Kanemoto interview (ddr-csujad-6-11)
Oral history interview with Tadashi Kanemoto. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: SCRC_KANEMOTO_TADASHI
Mamoru Masuda interview (ddr-csujad-6-21)
doc Mamoru Masuda interview (ddr-csujad-6-21)
Oral history interview with Mamoru Masuda. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: SCRC_MASUDA_MAMORU
Chester and Akiko Lillian Sasashima (ddr-csujad-8-97)
doc Chester and Akiko Lillian Sasashima (ddr-csujad-8-97)
Oral history interview with Chester and Akiko Lillian Sasashima. Information on the oral history project is found in: csuf_stp_0012A; Glossary in: csuf_stp_0014. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: FCPL Sasashima, Chester and Lillian
World War I soldier (ddr-densho-109-106)
img World War I soldier (ddr-densho-109-106)
The man on the left, Henry Matsumoto Jr., was the only person of Japanese descent in the U.S. Navy during World War I.
Selective Service training (ddr-densho-114-96)
img Selective Service training (ddr-densho-114-96)
Original caption: Selective Service man of Japanese ancestry proudly looks over his daily rifle score record. Reception Center, Hawaii. [According to Robert Sato, this photo was taken before 1941.]
Selective Service training (ddr-densho-114-83)
img Selective Service training (ddr-densho-114-83)
Original caption: Selective Service man of Japanese ancestry learns to "hold and squeeze" - Reception Center, Hawaii. [According to Robert Sato, this photo was taken before 1941.]
Soldier and mother (ddr-densho-151-45)
img Soldier and mother (ddr-densho-151-45)
Original WRA caption: Florin, Sacramento County, California. A soldier and his mother in a strawberry field. The soldier, age 23, volunteered July 10, 1941, and is stationed at Camp Leonard Wood, Missouri. He was furloughed to help his mother and family prepare for their evacuation. He is youngest of six years children, two of them volunteers ...
Nisei soldier (ddr-densho-151-312)
img Nisei soldier (ddr-densho-151-312)
Original caption: Florin, California. This American soldier of Japanese ancestry is shown at the railroad station of a small town in an agricultural community. He and nine other service men of Japanese ancestry received furloughs to enable them to come home to assist their families get ready for evacuation from their west coast homes. He is ...
Corporal Henry Tatsumi (ddr-densho-353-208)
img Corporal Henry Tatsumi (ddr-densho-353-208)
Captioned: "E Co. 75th Infantry Camp Lewis, now Fort Lewis."
Harry Umeda Interview Segment 9 (ddr-densho-1014-10-9)
vh Harry Umeda Interview Segment 9 (ddr-densho-1014-10-9)
Drafted in 1941, separated with other Nisei soldiers and sent to the infantry
Spark M. Matsunaga Interview Segment 5 (ddr-densho-1007-3-5)
vh Spark M. Matsunaga Interview Segment 5 (ddr-densho-1007-3-5)
Being stripped of weapons by the War Department after the bombing of Pearl Harbor

This material is based upon work assisted by a grant from the Department of the Interior, National Park Service. Any opinions, finding, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views ...

Edward H. Mitsukado Interview Segment 5 (ddr-densho-1007-4-5)
vh Edward H. Mitsukado Interview Segment 5 (ddr-densho-1007-4-5)
Leaving for military training on the mainland, saying goodbye to parents

This material is based upon work assisted by a grant from the Department of the Interior, National Park Service. Any opinions, finding, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department ...

George S. Matsui Segment 5 (ddr-densho-1008-2-5)
vh George S. Matsui Segment 5 (ddr-densho-1008-2-5)
The reclassification and discharge of Nisei soldiers to an enlisted reserve unit

Members of the National Japanese American Historical Society (NJAHS) arranged for and conducted this interview in conjunction with Densho.

George S. Matsui Segment 4 (ddr-densho-1008-2-4)
vh George S. Matsui Segment 4 (ddr-densho-1008-2-4)
Basic training and reconnaissance training as an early draftee

Members of the National Japanese American Historical Society (NJAHS) arranged for and conducted this interview in conjunction with Densho.

George S. Matsui Segment 3 (ddr-densho-1008-2-3)
vh George S. Matsui Segment 3 (ddr-densho-1008-2-3)
Drafted into the army in early 1941

Members of the National Japanese American Historical Society (NJAHS) arranged for and conducted this interview in conjunction with Densho.

George Koshi Segment 8 (ddr-densho-1008-1-8)
vh George Koshi Segment 8 (ddr-densho-1008-1-8)
Turmoil of Japanese American servicemen: fighting while their families are behind barbed wire

Members of the National Japanese American Historical Society (NJAHS) arranged for and conducted this interview in conjunction with Densho.

George Koshi Segment 14 (ddr-densho-1008-1-14)
vh George Koshi Segment 14 (ddr-densho-1008-1-14)
Writing to father while in the service

Members of the National Japanese American Historical Society (NJAHS) arranged for and conducted this interview in conjunction with Densho.

George Koshi Segment 7 (ddr-densho-1008-1-7)
vh George Koshi Segment 7 (ddr-densho-1008-1-7)
Attitude of father regarding military service: "You're an American citizen"

Members of the National Japanese American Historical Society (NJAHS) arranged for and conducted this interview in conjunction with Densho.

George Koshi Segment 5 (ddr-densho-1008-1-5)
vh George Koshi Segment 5 (ddr-densho-1008-1-5)
Drafted into the army

Members of the National Japanese American Historical Society (NJAHS) arranged for and conducted this interview in conjunction with Densho.

Harvey Watanabe Interview Segment 10 (ddr-densho-1008-5-10)
vh Harvey Watanabe Interview Segment 10 (ddr-densho-1008-5-10)
Removal and evacuation of Japanese American servicemen

Members of the National Japanese American Historical Society (NJAHS) arranged for and conducted this interview in conjunction with Densho.

Takashi Matsui Interview Segment 10 (ddr-densho-1008-4-10)
vh Takashi Matsui Interview Segment 10 (ddr-densho-1008-4-10)
Being drafted when the U.S. military was refusing Japanese American volunteers

Members of the National Japanese American Historical Society (NJAHS) arranged for and conducted this interview in conjunction with Densho.

API