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.

World War II (66)
Leaving camp (128)
Returning home (941)

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

941 items
Kay Matsuoka Segment 40 (ddr-densho-1000-48-40)
vh Kay Matsuoka Segment 40 (ddr-densho-1000-48-40)
Returning to Fresno, California, after the war: struggling with illness and making a living
Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 17 (ddr-densho-1000-87-17)
vh Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 17 (ddr-densho-1000-87-17)
Husband returns to medical practice, delivers postwar baby boom babies

References are made to several of Nobu Suzuki's personal papers, which are currently available for public perusal at the University of Washington's Manuscripts and University Archives.

Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 16 (ddr-densho-1000-87-16)
vh Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 16 (ddr-densho-1000-87-16)
Influx of servicemen changes neighborhoods and creates housing shortage after the war

References are made to several of Nobu Suzuki's personal papers, which are currently available for public perusal at the University of Washington's Manuscripts and University Archives.

Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 18 (ddr-densho-1000-87-18)
vh Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 18 (ddr-densho-1000-87-18)
Formation of the Japanese Resettlement Committee

References are made to several of Nobu Suzuki's personal papers, which are currently available for public perusal at the University of Washington's Manuscripts and University Archives.

Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 15 (ddr-densho-1000-87-15)
vh Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 15 (ddr-densho-1000-87-15)
Finding a home among friendly neighbors after returning to Seattle

References are made to several of Nobu Suzuki's personal papers, which are currently available for public perusal at the University of Washington's Manuscripts and University Archives.

Shigeko Sese Uno Segment 24 (ddr-densho-1000-98-24)
vh Shigeko Sese Uno Segment 24 (ddr-densho-1000-98-24)
Returning to Beacon Hill in Seattle, Washington, arriving to a vandalized home and getting involved in the community again
Shigeko Sese Uno Segment 25 (ddr-densho-1000-98-25)
vh Shigeko Sese Uno Segment 25 (ddr-densho-1000-98-25)
Opening an ice creamery, a community hub in Seattle's International District
Hank Shozo Umemoto Interview II Segment 3 (ddr-densho-1000-462-3)
vh Hank Shozo Umemoto Interview II Segment 3 (ddr-densho-1000-462-3)
First impressions of Los Angeles soon after the city was reopened to Japanese Americans returning from camps
Hank Shozo Umemoto Interview II Segment 8 (ddr-densho-1000-462-8)
vh Hank Shozo Umemoto Interview II Segment 8 (ddr-densho-1000-462-8)
Description of the Little Tokyo neighborhood of Los Angeles immediately following World War II
Mako Nakagawa Segment 19 (ddr-densho-1000-66-19)
vh Mako Nakagawa Segment 19 (ddr-densho-1000-66-19)
Parental discussions and anxiety surrounding where to go after leaving camp
Mako Nakagawa Segment 21 (ddr-densho-1000-66-21)
vh Mako Nakagawa Segment 21 (ddr-densho-1000-66-21)
Parents' struggles to reestablish their lives and find work
Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 20 (ddr-densho-1000-87-20)
vh Nobu Suzuki Interview II Segment 20 (ddr-densho-1000-87-20)
Japanese Resettlement Committee's efforts to assist returning Japanese with housing

References are made to several of Nobu Suzuki's personal papers, which are currently available for public perusal at the University of Washington's Manuscripts and University Archives.

Yasashi Ichikawa Interview II Segment 28 (ddr-densho-1000-112-28)
vh Yasashi Ichikawa Interview II Segment 28 (ddr-densho-1000-112-28)
Experiencing hardship, rebuilding the Seattle Buddhist Temple and community (Japanese language)

This interview was conducted in Japanese. The transcript is a translation of the original interview.

Akiko Kurose Interview II Segment 12 (ddr-densho-1000-42-12)
vh Akiko Kurose Interview II Segment 12 (ddr-densho-1000-42-12)
Opening up family apartment to returning Japanese Americans after the war

Mrs. Kurose was undergoing treatment for cancer and required frequent breaks and medication to help her with pain management.

Lawson I. Sakai Segment 13 (ddr-densho-1000-472-13)
vh Lawson I. Sakai Segment 13 (ddr-densho-1000-472-13)
Returning home to wife's family's neighborhood after the war, experiencing discrimination
Frank Kitamoto Segment 23 (ddr-densho-1000-35-23)
vh Frank Kitamoto Segment 23 (ddr-densho-1000-35-23)
Reception of Bainbridge Island, Washington, community to returning Japanese after the war
Esther Takei Nishio Interview Segment 18 (ddr-densho-1000-370-18)
vh Esther Takei Nishio Interview Segment 18 (ddr-densho-1000-370-18)
Leaving camp as part of a test group allowed to return early to the West Coast

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 …

Toru Sakahara - Kiyo Sakahara Interview II Segment 19 (ddr-densho-1000-77-19)
vh Toru Sakahara - Kiyo Sakahara Interview II Segment 19 (ddr-densho-1000-77-19)
Toru's beginning a career in law and insurance

This interview was conducted over two days at the Sakaharas' home.

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