Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Joe Yamakido Interview
Narrator: Joe Yamakido
Interviewer: Alice Ito
Location: Klamath Falls, Oregon
Date: July 4, 2004
Densho ID: denshovh-yjoe_2-01-0006

<Begin Segment 6>

AI: Well, so tell me what was going through your mind. You were forced out of your place and brought into Santa Anita, what were you thinking about?

JY: Oh, I was bitter, because it's at the, right at that time, my folks was, worked hard all those years, and it was going to be easy for them. Just when it was going to be easy for them, because until then, see, my dad, he couldn't own land, he couldn't rent land. But my brother was gonna be twenty-one, he could own land, buy land, anything. Rent land. It was going to be easy street for them. That was all busted up. See, that, economics was behind puttin' in, puttin' us in camp, too. See, a lot of people don't realize that. Because all over California, the Japanese controlled all the, I think, pretty sure they control most of the farming, the whole vegetable, fruits, wholesale market, and 'Frisco, L.A. And the flower market, the Japanese started the flower market, and all the nurseries. Yeah, I'm pretty sure that was behind it, 'cause they broke it up. Only one that survived is the one that was so big, they couldn't, they, they could come back and start over again. Like my folks, they were farming twenty-five acres. They couldn't, they, there was no way they could start back again, because when we came back -- before the war, we used horses. When we came back, it was tractors. One tractor cost $100,000 and the banks won't lend to Japanese. There's no way you could get started. Only the, only the big ones survived.

AI: What about, at the same time, as you were in Santa Anita, you were, you were bitter about the, the loss. What about your feeling as, as being an American? Did you feel like your, like your citizenship was being taken away? Or were you thinking about that at that time?

JY: No. I was thinking about going to work again. That's the reason, after that incident in Hermosa Beach, when I was put in Tule, I mean, Santa Anita, they picked me up for the, they said I started the riot.

<End Segment 6> - Copyright © 2004 Densho. All Rights Reserved.