Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: May Y. Namba Interview
Narrator: May Y. Namba
Interviewer: Alice Ito
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: October 21, 2004
Densho ID: denshovh-nmay-01-0025

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AI: So then after you went back to Chicago, at the time of your visit, had you been thinking that you would move back to Seattle permanently, or you were still not...

MN: No. I had no thoughts of returning to Seattle.

AI: What was it that finally changed your mind?

MN: Well, my parents persuaded us to come back.

AI: So tell me about that then, returning to Seattle.

MN: It was late in '47 we came back to Seattle, and I know Carol and I were the only ones left in Chicago, 'cause Annie had already come back to Seattle, and she had registered to go to the University of Washington, so she was attending school at that time. So I said, "We gotta see a little more of the world," so we stopped in, took a long trip to L.A., and then back up to Seattle.

AI: How was it, going down to L.A. and coming up the coast?

MN: It was an interesting, you know, it was a fun trip.

AI: Had you ever been to L.A. before?

MN: No.

AI: Well, now, this was still only a... well, maybe two years after the war. What kind of treatment did you get as you were coming up the coastline?

MN: Didn't feel anything, no repercussion or anything.

AI: So you were served in restaurants...

MN: Uh-huh.

AI: ...and you were treated all right.

MN: Well, on the train, you don't get off, anyway.

AI: Oh, I'm sorry. You were on the train, you weren't driving?

MN: [Shakes head]

AI: So then after you returned to Seattle, what did you do at that time?

MN: Jobs were scarce, and the treatment wasn't nice, you know. And it was very difficult to find a job.

AI: So even though you had had a good, steady job in Chicago, good work experience, you had been to business school, it was still difficult for you.

MN: Uh-huh.

AI: Were you able to find something?

MN: I finally found some work for the government, I guess it was. But then it wasn't for very long, 'cause I soon got married and left Seattle and went to Portland.

AI: So that was in...

MN: 1948.

AI: 1948, in the fall. So tell me about your wedding. Did you get married in Seattle?

MN: We got married in Seattle, and we were going to go to Vancouver, Washington, for our honeymoon, and because of the restrictions, we weren't able to cross the border, so our plans were changed, and we went to San Juan Islands. And as soon as we got there, he got accepted to dental school, (...) you had to come back and put your money down to hold your place. So we came back to Portland and that's where I lived for four years while he went to dental school.

<End Segment 25> - Copyright © 2004 Densho. All Rights Reserved.