Food

The eating facilities in the camps were large mess halls with long lines and crowded tables. Group living tended to erode family solidarity, as teenagers escaped parental authority by eating with friends rather than family. The quality of the food was poor and milk and fresh meat were constantly in short supply. Inexpensive foods such as wieners, dried fish, pancakes, macaroni and pickled vegetables were served often. The diets of the camp inmates improved only after they began growing some of their own food.

World War II (215)
Concentration camps (1243)
Food (234)

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234 items
Notice from Harry Tateishi, Foreman, Canal Project, to the residents of Heart Mountain, 1943 (ddr-csujad-55-670)
doc Notice from Harry Tateishi, Foreman, Canal Project, to the residents of Heart Mountain, 1943 (ddr-csujad-55-670)
Notice from Harry Tateishi, foreman on Canal Project, to incarcerees at the Heart Mountain incarceration camp regarding a forthcoming agricultural program and irrigation project. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: sac_jaac_0672
Minutes from the Heart Mountain Community Council meeting, November 23, 1943 (ddr-csujad-55-492)
doc Minutes from the Heart Mountain Community Council meeting, November 23, 1943 (ddr-csujad-55-492)
Minutes from the Heart Mountain Community Council meeting. Includes discussion on milk, dental services, and recreation. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: sac_jaac_0494
Farm [farm workers loading truck] (ddr-csujad-26-72)
img Farm [farm workers loading truck] (ddr-csujad-26-72)
Three workers smile at the camera while loading a truck. Caption on back of photograph reads, "The farm." From photo album of Robert Billigmeier. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: mei_05_009
Messhalls in Tule Lake (ddr-csujad-26-23)
doc Messhalls in Tule Lake (ddr-csujad-26-23)
Report describing the mess halls of Tule Lake including: administrative organization, operations, personnel, duties, conflicts, wages, food procurement and distribution, food preparation, schedules, sample menus, dietary accommodations, food rationing and shortages, seating capacity, seating arrangements and systems, utensils, and incarceree attendance. The report analyzes workers and incarceree behaviors, status, mental faculties, disposition, religion, age, and gender. …
Chapter 6 and 7 personality cards (ddr-csujad-26-34)
doc Chapter 6 and 7 personality cards (ddr-csujad-26-34)
Journal entries written by high school students discussing their observations and perspectives on a variety of topics including living in barracks, block noise, lack of privacy, mess hall dining, nosy neighbors, jobs, leisure time, sports, movies, church attendance, the Young Buddhist Association (YBA), family dynamics, social changes, dating, and rumors. Each entry includes the full date …
Cooperatively owned canteen (ddr-csujad-26-130)
img Cooperatively owned canteen (ddr-csujad-26-130)
Photo of people working and shopping inside a canteen. Goods are seen divided by type. Verso reads "cooperatively owned canteen." From photo album of Robert Billigmeier. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: mei_05_100
Memo from WRA Administrative Division re: war ration books, May 18, 1943 (ddr-csujad-26-40)
doc Memo from WRA Administrative Division re: war ration books, May 18, 1943 (ddr-csujad-26-40)
Memo advising recipient to relinquish war ration books due to living in a "group institutional user establishment." See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: mei_03_08_003
Evacuation and resettlement study, structural report, section II: the first six months at Tule Lake: social changes and a chronology of events (ddr-csujad-26-4)
doc Evacuation and resettlement study, structural report, section II: the first six months at Tule Lake: social changes and a chronology of events (ddr-csujad-26-4)
Report chronicling the first six months Tule Lake camp including the establishment of community activities, employment, schools, and barracks infrastructure. Describes challenges of adjusting to life in camp often using direct quotations from incarcerees to express struggles amid social and cultural groups as well as conflicts and strikes. Several events are also described including a description …
Structural report, chapter I: an introduction to Tule Lake (ddr-csujad-26-3)
doc Structural report, chapter I: an introduction to Tule Lake (ddr-csujad-26-3)
Portion of a report compiled as part of the Japanese American Evacuation and Resettlement Study (JERS) describing the landscape, climate, barracks, facilities, schedule, and daily life routines of incarcerees at the Tule Lake incarceration camp. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: mei_01_34_001
Victim of the Japanese Evacuation and Resettlement Study (JERS) (ddr-csujad-26-31)
doc Victim of the Japanese Evacuation and Resettlement Study (JERS) (ddr-csujad-26-31)
An affidavit written to invalidate purported distortions and false accusations made against the author in two books published using research material collected by Rosalie Hankey Wax during de Cristoforo's incarceration at Tule Lake. The books are "Doing Fieldwork: Warnings and Advice" by Rosalie H. Wax and "The Spoilage" by Dorothy Swaine Thomas and Richard S. Nishimoto …
University of California evacuation and resettlement study: The Gila River WRA relocation center, Rivers, Pinal County, Arizona (ddr-csujad-26-27)
doc University of California evacuation and resettlement study: The Gila River WRA relocation center, Rivers, Pinal County, Arizona (ddr-csujad-26-27)
Description of the Gila River incarceration camp during the first month of occupation, including camp location, climate, landscape, barracks, issues with camp construction, poor conditions and lack of furnishings, incarcerees who were subjected to upon arrival. Camp administration, food and housing issues, camp employment, security, recreation, and social groups are described and analyzed. Report compiled as …
Eating to live (ddr-csujad-29-160)
img Eating to live (ddr-csujad-29-160)
Photograph of boys eating at the Granada camp. The caption reads: Eating to live. Amache, Co. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: P101
[Children's Village incarcerees wait at mess hall] (ddr-csujad-29-321)
img [Children's Village incarcerees wait at mess hall] (ddr-csujad-29-321)
Nineteen incarcerees wait for food at Children's Village in Manzanar. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: P264
[Teenagers eating at the mess hall] (ddr-csujad-29-216)
img [Teenagers eating at the mess hall] (ddr-csujad-29-216)
Photograph of 10 teenagers eating at a mess hall in the Granada camp. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: P159
Mess Hall Identification Card (ddr-csujad-29-24)
doc Mess Hall Identification Card (ddr-csujad-29-24)
Manzanar mess hall identification card. Block 20, Building 11, Apt. 4. Belonging to Ruth Hochi. See this object in the California State Universities Japanese American Digitization project site: 4137_M03
An Oral History with Norman Y. Mineta (ddr-csujad-29-55)
vh An Oral History with Norman Y. Mineta (ddr-csujad-29-55)
Japanese American congressman, representing the Thirteenth Congressional District of California, born and raised in San Jose, California, discusses his early life, graduation from the University of California, Berkeley, and receiving a commission and serving in the armed forces from 1953-1956. Recalls the removal, "relocation," and incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II at the Heart …
An Oral History with Seiko Ishida (ddr-csujad-29-11)
av An Oral History with Seiko Ishida (ddr-csujad-29-11)
Retired Kibei teacher recounts samurai parents' background and their immigration to Seattle, Washington; socioeconomic composition of Seattle's Japanese community; earlier teacher training; prewar stays in Japan as a child and as a tutor in a missionary family; experiences as a teacher in the wartime resettlement in New York; and postwar return to Los Angeles. This oral …
Camp meal ticket (ddr-densho-13-25)
doc Camp meal ticket (ddr-densho-13-25)
This meal ticket was required when a camp inmate wanted to eat outside his or her designated mess hall.
Japanese American preparing meal (ddr-densho-15-70)
img Japanese American preparing meal (ddr-densho-15-70)
Jim Shiga, well-known for his cooking skills, prepares a meal in the camp's warehouse kitchen.
Visitor's receipt for meals (ddr-densho-25-110)
doc Visitor's receipt for meals (ddr-densho-25-110)
In 1943, Mitsuo Iseri was on leave from the 442nd Regimental Combat Team. He visited Minidoka, and received this receipt for meals.
Mess hall food (ddr-densho-37-413)
img Mess hall food (ddr-densho-37-413)
Original WRA caption: Manzanar Relocation Center, Manzanar, California. Meals are being served cafeteria style at this War Relocation Authority Center.
Child waiting for mess hall meal (ddr-densho-37-518)
img Child waiting for mess hall meal (ddr-densho-37-518)
Original WRA caption: Granada Relocation Center, Amache, Colorado. It is a long time between meals at the mess hall for a hungry man, so the cracker box at the Kobayashi barracks gets a frequent raiding.
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