The earliest wave of Japanese immigrants, the Issei (first generation), had a strong sense of their ethnic identity and retained the values and traditions of their country of birth. Most came to the United States as sojourners and planned to return to Japan after earning their fortunes. In addition, discriminatory laws forbade them from becoming American citizens and from exercising other basic rights, such as owning or leasing land. Since they were thus prevented from fully taking part in American life, it is not surprising that many still identified strongly with the culture of their homeland.

Identity and values (107)
Issei (739)

Related articles from the Densho Encyclopedia :

739 items
Men and women in front of sawmill (ddr-densho-353-22)
img Men and women in front of sawmill (ddr-densho-353-22)
Mukilteo sawmill. Caption in album: "Japanese sawmill workers greet a new bride."
Japanese American men (ddr-densho-325-320)
img Japanese American men (ddr-densho-325-320)
Hisa's father, Junichi Nimura, and Mr. Goto. Written on back of photograph "Mr. Goto Papa Nov. 1947 Weimar Calif."
Page of Hisa Nimura Horiuchi Scrapbook (ddr-densho-325-4)
img Page of Hisa Nimura Horiuchi Scrapbook (ddr-densho-325-4)
Photographs of Hisa's kindergarten class in Florin, California. Ms. Whilhite also includes the history of Hisa's family.
Mother and son (ddr-densho-325-305)
img Mother and son (ddr-densho-325-305)
Sumito Horiuchi poses with his mother. Written on back of photograph "Nov. '47"
Family picnic (ddr-densho-325-463)
img Family picnic (ddr-densho-325-463)
From left to right: Mrs. Horiuchi, Sumito Horiuchi, Hisa Nimura Horiuchi, Raymond Horiuchi, unidentified family member, Eddie Horiuchi, and unidentified family member.
Issei woman (ddr-densho-325-297)
img Issei woman (ddr-densho-325-297)
Written on back of photograph "Mrs. Horiuchi Nov '47"
Group of Issei and Nisei in front of barrack (ddr-densho-310-2)
img Group of Issei and Nisei in front of barrack (ddr-densho-310-2)
Ichikawa family in front of their barrack at Minidoka concentration camp. Also pictured are family friends, Yahachi Suzuki and Mr. Hino. (Front Row, left to right) Akira Ichikawa, Hiroko Ichikawa (Back Row, left to right) Satoru Ichikawa, Mr. Hino, Etsuko Ichikawa, Yasashi Ichikawa, Shinya Ichikawa (In Yasahi's arms), Kazuya Ichikawa, Noriko Ichikawa, Yahachi Suzuki
Issei minister and family (ddr-densho-310-4)
img Issei minister and family (ddr-densho-310-4)
Ichikawa family portrait. (Front row, left to right) Akira, Tatsuya, Shinya, Yasashi, Hiroko (Back row, left to right) Noriko, Satoru, Etsuko, Kazuya
Issei couple (ddr-densho-310-3)
img Issei couple (ddr-densho-310-3)
Issei couple Rev. Tatsuya Ichikawa and Mrs. Yasashi Ichikawa. Rev. Ichikawa was riban at Seattle Buddhist Church for many years.
Issei man in Los Angeles (ddr-densho-242-34)
img Issei man in Los Angeles (ddr-densho-242-34)
Caption by Ike Hatchimonji: "Kumezo Hatchimonji - age 65 Los Angeles. Died 1956 Niland, Calif."
Family (ddr-densho-258-97)
img Family (ddr-densho-258-97)
Family posing outside, multiple generations, with a young man in a military uniform. Caption below: "Yukio, Shiz, Hanako, & Akira Aramaki." Inscription: "Dear One-san, Love Hanako."
Three Issei men in a field (ddr-densho-259-538)
img Three Issei men in a field (ddr-densho-259-538)
Masuo Yasui with two unidentified Issei men, standing in a field.
Ten Issei men (ddr-densho-259-327)
img Ten Issei men (ddr-densho-259-327)
Caption by Homer Yasui: "10 Issei men, all in western attire. Location not identified, but there is a handwritten date of 1907 at the top. Around then, Masuo [Yasui] was living in Portland at either the Japanese Methodist Mission or at the home of the Caucasian attorney, for whom he worked as a houseboy."
The Newell Star, Vol. I, No. 40 (November 30, 1944) (ddr-densho-284-42)
doc The Newell Star, Vol. I, No. 40 (November 30, 1944) (ddr-densho-284-42)
Selected article titles: "Comply with Smoking Ban at All Indoor Gatherings" (p. 1), "263 Casualties Listed from 9 Centers-WRA" (p. 2), and "Issei Volunteers to Be Accepted by U.S. Army" (p. 2).