Tad Sato Segment 16

Family background (ddr-densho-1000-82-1) - 00:02:52
Working in Seattle's Public Market prior to the war (ddr-densho-1000-82-2) - 00:02:41
Father's retail business in Seattle's Japantown (ddr-densho-1000-82-3) - 00:03:39
Father's pick-up by the FBI: the possibility that he was turned in by Japanese "stool pigeons" (ddr-densho-1000-82-4) - 00:05:06
Memories of Ada Mahon, principal at Bailey Gatzert School in Seattle (ddr-densho-1000-82-5) - 00:03:24
Sports and recreational activities prewar (ddr-densho-1000-82-6) - 00:02:18
Awareness of places were Japanese Americans were not allowed (ddr-densho-1000-82-7) - 00:03:07
Japanese and Caucasian students, each group "steered clear" of the other (ddr-densho-1000-82-8) - 00:04:15
Memories of games and fundraisers for the Japanese Courier League (ddr-densho-1000-82-9) - 00:05:05
Feeling disillusioned about college since Nisei with college degrees weren't getting hired (ddr-densho-1000-82-10) - 00:03:17
Going to work on a railroad gang in Montana (ddr-densho-1000-82-11) - 00:03:52
Hearing about the bombing of Pearl Harbor while working for the Great Northern Railway (ddr-densho-1000-82-12) - 00:03:23
Working for Great Northern Railway allows some to avoid concentration camps (ddr-densho-1000-82-13) - 00:02:43
Mixed reception from neighboring towns while working for a railroad company (ddr-densho-1000-82-14) - 00:02:54
Spending time in neighboring towns while working for the railroad (ddr-densho-1000-82-15) - 00:03:43
Visiting father at the Kooskia internment camp, Idaho (ddr-densho-1000-82-16) - 00:06:34
Living conditions while working for the Great Northern Railway during the war (ddr-densho-1000-82-17) - 00:05:15
Working alongside white employees of the Great Northern Railway (ddr-densho-1000-82-18) - 00:02:05
Mixing of people of different ethnic backgrounds at railroad job (ddr-densho-1000-82-19) - 00:02:11
Description of the Japanese American work ethic (ddr-densho-1000-82-20) - 00:02:39
Typical meals, "miso shiru" one day, bread and jam the next while working on the Great Northern Railway during the war (ddr-densho-1000-82-21) - 00:03:49
Working in medical corps, "I hope I never get sick in the army..." (ddr-densho-1000-82-22) - 00:03:59
Returning to the railroad after the war (ddr-densho-1000-82-23) - 00:02:34
Gradually moving up in the railroad company despite discrimination (ddr-densho-1000-82-24) - 00:05:17
Impact of equal employment laws; still no women or minorities at the top (ddr-densho-1000-82-25) - 00:06:15
Redress for Japanese rail workers, not incarcerated but still impacted (ddr-densho-1000-82-26) - 00:04:43
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ddr-densho-1000-82-16 (Legacy UID: denshovh-stad-01-0016)

Visiting father at the Kooskia internment camp, Idaho

Due to technical difficulties, this interview has audio problems in its second half.

00:06:34 — Segment 16 of 26

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August 15, 1998

Densho Visual History Collection


Courtesy of Densho


Tad Sato

Tad Sato Interview

01:37:40 — 26 segments

August 15, 1998

Seattle, Washington

Nisei male. Born May 9, 1922, in Portland, Oregon. Moved to Seattle with father after parents divorced. Grew up in Seattle's Nihonmachi where father ran a secondhand store. Disinterested in college after seeing a lack of employment opportunities for graduating Japanese Americans. Went to work for Great Northern Railway, laying and maintaining tracks on the West Coast. At war's onset, Great Northern brought its Japanese workers together in a segregated gang outside the restricted zone, so he continued to work for the railroad, thus avoiding incarceration in a War Relocation Authority camp. While away, father was picked up by the FBI, and then sent to Kooskia internment camp, Idaho, where he was held throughout the war. Drafted into military service in 1945. Returned to Great Northern and was promoted through the ranks in the accounting department despite running into workplace discrimination.

(Due to technical difficulties, this interview has audio problems in its second half.)

Stephen Fugita, interviewer; John Pai, videographer


Courtesy of Densho