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
Toru Sakahara - Kiyo Sakahara Interview II Segment 16 (ddr-densho-1000-77-16)
vh Toru Sakahara - Kiyo Sakahara Interview II Segment 16 (ddr-densho-1000-77-16)
Returning to Seattle and finding a place to live

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

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"
Yasashi Ichikawa Interview II Segment 27 (ddr-densho-1000-112-27)
vh Yasashi Ichikawa Interview II Segment 27 (ddr-densho-1000-112-27)
Returning to Seattle after the war, finding the Buddhist temple vandalized (Japanese language)

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

Akiko Kurose Interview II Segment 11 (ddr-densho-1000-42-11)
vh Akiko Kurose Interview II Segment 11 (ddr-densho-1000-42-11)
Returning to Seattle after the war

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

Yae Wada Segment 16 (ddr-densho-1000-476-16)
vh Yae Wada Segment 16 (ddr-densho-1000-476-16)
Trying to reclaim prewar beauty shop business after the war
Frank Kitamoto Segment 25 (ddr-densho-1000-35-25)
vh Frank Kitamoto Segment 25 (ddr-densho-1000-35-25)
Mother's efforts to reestablish the family farm after the war
Frank S. Fujii Segment 24 (ddr-densho-1000-8-24)
vh Frank S. Fujii Segment 24 (ddr-densho-1000-8-24)
Leaving Tule Lake: "Put me on a train, gave me $29... And then you're feeling so inadequate and feeling so poor"

This interview was conducted over two days due to electrical problems. The majority of the interview was completed on the second day, September 5.

Fumiko Hayashida Segment 32 (ddr-densho-1000-15-32)
vh Fumiko Hayashida Segment 32 (ddr-densho-1000-15-32)
Leaving camp and returning to Bainbridge Island: "glad to be home"
Yosh Nakagawa Interview Segment 25 (ddr-densho-1000-172-25)
vh Yosh Nakagawa Interview Segment 25 (ddr-densho-1000-172-25)
Returning to Seattle after World War II; living at the Japanese Methodist Church
Emery Brooks Andrews Interview Segment 17 (ddr-densho-1000-155-17)
vh Emery Brooks Andrews Interview Segment 17 (ddr-densho-1000-155-17)
The end of World War II: returning to Seattle, father's resolve to reopen the Japanese Baptist Church
Emery Brooks Andrews Interview Segment 18 (ddr-densho-1000-155-18)
vh Emery Brooks Andrews Interview Segment 18 (ddr-densho-1000-155-18)
Father's activities immediately after returning to Seattle: opposing the teamsters and aiding Japanese American farmers
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.

Junkoh Harui Segment 14 (ddr-densho-1000-11-14)
vh Junkoh Harui Segment 14 (ddr-densho-1000-11-14)
Returning to Bainbridge Island and finding the total devastation of Bainbridge Gardens; parents' example of "gaman," perseverance

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.

Junkoh Harui Segment 16 (ddr-densho-1000-11-16)
vh Junkoh Harui Segment 16 (ddr-densho-1000-11-16)
Efforts to rebuild Bainbridge Gardens: father's hurt at seeing his trees, taken during the war, in neighbors' yards

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.

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