Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Marian Asao Kurosu Interview
Narrator: Marian Asao Kurosu
Interviewers: Alice Ito (primary), Tomoyo Yamada (secondary)
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: June 23 & 24, 2000
Densho ID: denshovh-kmarian-01-0001

<Begin Segment 1>

AI: [Eng.] Today is June 23rd, 2000. We're here in Seattle, Washington, speaking with Marian Asao Kurosu. My name is Alice Ito for the Densho Project. And also interviewing is Tomoyo Yamada. John Pai is the videographer. And we're going to start by asking questions about your very early childhood and family in Japan. Mrs. Kurosu, when were you born?

MK: [Eng.] Oh, that's Japanese way or English, that's English no more easy.

AI: [Eng.] Japanese way is fine.

MK: [Jpn.] 1907. I born the 19 -- , I don't know... if in Japanese...

AI: [Jpn.] Japanese is fine.

MK: [Eng.] No, 19 -- oh gosh, I miss so much.


MK: [Jpn.] 1907. March 10. 19 -- o-seven. It sounds funny, doesn't it? Zero-o-seven, o-seven in the March 10, I born in Kamiasoda, Rokujo village, Asua County, Fukui Prefecture, that's my, born, that place.

AI: [Eng.] What was your mother's name?

MK: [Eng.] Mother, Misao Kaneda.

AI: [Eng.] And father's name?

MK: [Eng.] Shinsaku Kaneda.

AI: [Eng.] What do you remember about your mother? Do you remember, have any very early childhood memories --

MK: [Eng.] Yeah, not much. Very sorry, not much. No, I can't...

AI: [Eng.] And what did your family do in Fukui Prefecture?

MK: [Eng.] Oh, that's, raise rice. Rice paddy or what, uh-huh. So, everybody easy to live. Yeah.

AI: [Eng.] It was easy to live?

MK: [Eng.] Yeah... then my grandpa, grandpa, he raise me, so I... he's eighty-two years old, then die. Until, I live same house with my grandpa.

AI: [Eng.] And what was your grandpa's name?

MK: [Eng.] Kaneda Nizaemon.

AI: [Eng.] Well, you told us earlier that your father left Japan --

MK: [Eng.] Oh, yeah.

AI: [Eng.] -- to come to the U.S.

MK: [Eng.] Uh-huh.

AI: [Eng.] Why did he do that?

MK: [Eng.] I don't know too much but I think my second uncle is in America. That's why I think my father coming America.

AI: [Eng.] So your father came to America when you were very little, when you were very young.

MK: [Eng.] Yeah, that's right.

AI: [Eng.] And, I think you said earlier not too many people went from Fukui Prefecture.

MK: [Eng.] Yeah, my village, my village only one, my father the only one come to Alaska, America. Uh-huh.

AI: [Eng.] And do you know why that very few people from Fukui Prefecture --

MK: [Eng.] Because easy to live. That's why nobody want to come to America.

AI: [Eng.] The farming was good?

MK: [Eng.] Yeah, farming fine. Yeah. That's why nobody want to come to America.

AI: [Eng.] The, I think you told us earlier that your uncle, who came first was, his last name was Araki --

MK: [Eng.] Yeah, that's Nisaku Kaneda. But, what called, he marry to Araki, Araki Masa. That's her name. Yeah. So he gonna change to Araki. Yeah.

AI: [Eng.] And then when your father came to America, did he work with his brother, or live with his brother?

MK: [Eng.] Yeah, later on. Later on he working with his brother, Nisaku, South Park Greenhouse.

AI: [Eng.] South Park Greenhouse.

MK: [Eng.] Yeah. That's why, yeah.

AI: [Eng.] When you were about six years old, your mother came to America --

MK: [Eng.] Yeah.

AI: [Eng.] -- to join your father and that is, that's when you were, stayed with your grandpa. Is that when you went to stay with your grandpa?

MK: [Eng.] Yeah, that's right, that's right, uh-huh.

AI: [Eng.] And you had a younger brother, Yoneichi?

MK: [Eng.] Yoneichi, yeah. Only I think one year little, one year's maybe not enough though, then my mother's mei-, what's mei-, what, what...

AI: [Eng.] Niece? Niece?

MK: [Eng.] Mother's ni- ni- mi-... you know?

AI: [Eng.] Niece?

MK: [Eng.] Yeah, niece, yeah. They raise my brother, uh-huh.

<End Segment 1> - Copyright © 2000 Densho. All Rights Reserved.