Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Bob Y. Sakata Interview
Narrator: Bob Y. Sakata
Interviewer: Daryl Maeda
Location: Denver, Colorado
Date: May 14, 2008
Densho ID: denshovh-sbob-01-0003

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DM: So what was a typical day for you like, once you could remember?

BS: The typical day for us was getting up at sunrise and going to work out in the field, and coming back home about seven o'clock to clean up and wash up and get ready for school. And then after school, we'd immediately, unwritten rule, we'd change clothes and go look for Dad, or Dad would come and tell us what we had to do, and we would be working out in field 'til, 'til sundown.

DM: Really truly a family farm.

BS: Oh yes, true. And you see, he grew, he grew commodities that would harvest twelve months a year. So every evening, we would be harvesting something for him to take to the market in the following morning.

DM: So who were your neighbors?

BS: My neighbors, we had some wonderful neighbors. We were surrounded by also truck gardeners and outstanding growers. There were Italian growers. To the north of us was Mr. Lagorio, and to the south of us was Mr. Orsetti, both Italian truck farmers, and they were perfectionists, they were good. And I learned a lot from (them). And then walking distance, maybe a couple thousand feet from us was a large dairy, and they were from Portuguese descent, and they were outstanding dairymen. And that's where I would, Dad would give me a nickel to go and get a half a gallon of milk for the family.

DM: So this community that you lived in was very much a multiethnic community.

BS: Yes. It was a multiethnic community, and truly agriculture, very diversified agriculture, from poultry, dairy, cattle, vegetables, and greenhouses also.

DM: So there was Portuguese, Italian, Japanese all living side by side. How did everybody get along?

BS: Got along beautifully. We all respected each other, and when my mother passed away in 1934, I was, I think six years old. And why, all the Caucasian neighbors would come and help, and so it was very close-knit, respected friends at that time.

DM: So let's see. What, what elementary school did you attend?

BS: I went to an elementary school called Alviso District Elementary School. There were three big rooms, and it was, one class was from first to, first, second and third grade. The next room was fourth, fifth and sixth grade, and the principal taught the seventh and eighth grade.

DM: So a pretty small school then.

BS: Yes.

DM: And did the kids all play with each other, the Portuguese, the Italian, Japanese?

BS: Oh yes, yes.

<End Segment 3> - Copyright ©2008 Densho. All Rights Reserved.