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 (231)
Leaving camp (287)
Returning home (1048)

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

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1048 items
Marian Asao Kurosu Interview Segment 72 (ddr-densho-1000-118-72)
vh Marian Asao Kurosu Interview Segment 72 (ddr-densho-1000-118-72)
Returning to South Park, Washington, after the war until home in Sunnydale was vacated

During this interview, Mrs. Kurosu alternately speaks in both English and Japanese. As a result, the English translation of the transcript contains [Jpn.] and [Eng.], which indicate whether the original dialogue was spoken in Japanese or English.

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 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 15 (ddr-densho-1000-11-15)
vh Junkoh Harui Segment 15 (ddr-densho-1000-11-15)
Positive memories of returning to school on Bainbridge Island, Washington

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 26 (ddr-densho-1000-11-26)
vh Junkoh Harui Segment 26 (ddr-densho-1000-11-26)
Lessons learned from rebuilding, the importance of honor, dignity, and family legacy

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.

Bob Santos Interview I Segment 13 (ddr-densho-1000-339-13)
vh Bob Santos Interview I Segment 13 (ddr-densho-1000-339-13)
Memories of Japanese Americans' return to the community: mostly welcoming, some discrimination
Paul Nagano Segment 12 (ddr-densho-1000-65-12)
vh Paul Nagano Segment 12 (ddr-densho-1000-65-12)
Re-establishing Japanese Christian churches on West Coast during the postwar resettlement period
Hisaye Yamamoto Interview Segment 13 (ddr-densho-1002-10-13)
vh Hisaye Yamamoto Interview Segment 13 (ddr-densho-1002-10-13)
Leaving camp and returning to California

This interview was conducted by sisters Emiko and Chizuko Omori for their 1999 documentary, Rabbit in the Moon, about the Japanese American resisters of conscience in the World War II incarceration camps. As a result, the interviews in this collection are typically not life histories, instead primarily focusing on …

Yaeko Yoshihara Interview Segment 7 (ddr-densho-1001-17-7)
vh Yaeko Yoshihara Interview Segment 7 (ddr-densho-1001-17-7)
Leaving camp and returning home to Bainbridge Island

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 of the Interior.

Kay Sakai Nakao Interview Segment 14 (ddr-densho-1001-3-14)
vh Kay Sakai Nakao Interview Segment 14 (ddr-densho-1001-3-14)
Adjusting to returning home: "I don't know why, I just kept looking over my shoulder"
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
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