Tom Matsuoka Segment 1

Family background and motivation for immigration (ddr-densho-1000-47-1) - 00:07:18
Father recruited to work in Hawaiian sugarcane fields (ddr-densho-1000-47-2) - 00:06:20
Living with mother's family in Japan (ddr-densho-1000-47-3) - 00:07:12
Attending elementary school in Japan (ddr-densho-1000-47-4) - 00:08:54
Father's work farming on Vashon Island (ddr-densho-1000-47-5) - 00:10:18
Returning to the United States (ddr-densho-1000-47-6) - 00:07:18
Attending night school to learn English (ddr-densho-1000-47-7) - 00:05:10
Working with father at a sawmill (ddr-densho-1000-47-8) - 00:02:58
Finding a job at a sawmill in Port Angeles (ddr-densho-1000-47-9) - 00:07:45
Opening a stall at the Public Market (ddr-densho-1000-47-10) - 00:05:49
Playing baseball with sawmill teams (ddr-densho-1000-47-11) - 00:06:27
Working at a furniture factory (ddr-densho-1000-47-12) - 00:05:08
Meeting future wife (ddr-densho-1000-47-13) - 00:07:53
Description of wedding reception (ddr-densho-1000-47-14) - 00:05:18
Moving to Bellevue, Washington (ddr-densho-1000-47-15) - 00:07:01
Establishing the Seinenkai and the Kokaido, the Japanese Community Hall (ddr-densho-1000-47-16) - 00:05:31
Changes in farming business lead to the establishment of the Bellevue Vegetable Growers Association (ddr-densho-1000-47-17) - 00:15:40
The ups and downs of agricultural life (ddr-densho-1000-47-18) - 00:05:26
Traveling to Japan in 1940 shortly before World War II (ddr-densho-1000-47-19) - 00:12:36
Establishment of Japanese language school in Bellevue (ddr-densho-1000-47-20) - 00:02:46
Noticing hardships in Japan just prior to World War II (ddr-densho-1000-47-21) - 00:02:56
Being picked up by the FBI and detained by the INS after the bombing of Pearl Harbor (ddr-densho-1000-47-22) - 00:07:06
Life in the Justice Department internment camp at Fort Missoula, Montana (ddr-densho-1000-47-23) - 00:05:38
Receiving a Justice Department hearing (ddr-densho-1000-47-24) - 00:06:48
Joining family at the Pinedale Assembly Center, California: "So doggone hot..." (ddr-densho-1000-47-25) - 00:03:17
Farming at Tule Lake concentration camp, California (ddr-densho-1000-47-26) - 00:09:07
Returning to find family's home destroyed (ddr-densho-1000-47-27) - 00:09:13
Farming in Chinook, Montana (ddr-densho-1000-47-28) - 00:05:22
Obtaining birth certificate from Hawaii (ddr-densho-1000-47-29) - 00:09:36
Thoughts on redress (ddr-densho-1000-47-30) - 00:02:01
Overall impact of the camp experience (ddr-densho-1000-47-31) - 00:05:49
Reflections (ddr-densho-1000-47-32) - 00:02:36
Free to use This object is offered under a Creative Commons license. You are free to use it for any non-commercial purpose as long as you properly cite it, and if you share what you have created.

Learn more...

ddr-densho-1000-47-1 (Legacy UID: denshovh-mtom-01-0001)

Family background and motivation for immigration

00:07:18 — Segment 1 of 32

Previous segment Next segment

May 7, 1998

Densho Visual History Collection


Courtesy of Densho


Tom Matsuoka

Tom Matsuoka Interview

03:32:17 — 32 segments

May 7, 1998

Ridgefield, Washington

Kibei male. Born August 1, 1903, in Sprecklesville, Maui, Hawaii. Taken to Japan in 1905 and raised by grandparents. Returned to the United States in 1919, joining father at Barneston sawmill in Washington. Married and farmed in Bellevue, Washington. Founded Bellevue Seinenkai and managed the Bellevue Vegetable Growers Association prior to World War II. Was picked up by the FBI on December 8, 1941, detained by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) in Seattle, then interned at the Department of Justice camp at Fort Missoula, Montana. Was transferred to the Pinedale Assembly Center, California, and then to Tule Lake concentration camp, California. Was released to harvest sugar beets in Chinook, Montana, with his family as work crew. Established a farm in Chinook.

Alice Ito, interviewer; Matt Emery, videographer


Courtesy of Densho