Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Sumiko M. Yamamoto Interview
Narrator: Sumiko M. Yamamoto
Interviewers: Tom Ikeda (primary); Barbara Takei (secondary)
Location: Sacramento, California
Date: December 8, 2009
Densho ID: denshovh-ysumiko-01-0001

<Begin Segment 1>

TI: Okay, so today is Thursday, December 8, 2009, and we're in the home of Jane and Gene Itogawa in Sacramento. I'm Tom Ikeda, the interviewer, along with Barbara Takei, and on camera is Dana Hoshide. And today we have Sue Yamamoto to interview. But, so Sue, let me start from the very beginning, and can you tell me when and where you were born?

SY: I was born in Spreckels, California.

TI: And where is Spreckels?

SY: I don't think it's on the map, I don't know. It's a real small place. It's near... I don't know whether it's near Salinas or not, but someplace around there.

TI: But in that area.

SY: It's a sugar beet town or city, valley or whatever.

TI: So Spreckels, California, and when were you born?

SY: May 12, 1925.

TI: And when you were born in Spreckels, were you born at your family home, or do you know what kind of facility was used when you were born?

SY: I think in a hospital, I think, but I wasn't born at home.

TI: Okay. And what was the name given to you when you were born? What name was given to you by your parents?

SY: Sumiko.

TI: And any middle name?

SY: No.

TI: And do you have any brothers or sisters?

SY: I have one sister, and I have, I had six brothers, but we have five now.

TI: Okay, so why don't we do this? Why don't we kind of go down in birth order, if you could just kind of talk through, like the oldest to youngest.

SY: I'm not sure about their birthdays. [Laughs]

TI: Don't worry about that, just their birth order will be fine.

SY: Well, George, he was, he's deceased, he died in September. And the next is Frank Sadayuki. And after that is Harry Fumio, and next was my sister, Midori, and Katsumi, and me, and Masaru, and Ken, the youngest.

TI: So eight, eight kids.

SY: Yes.

TI: And you said six brothers?

SY: Six brothers, yes.

TI: Six brothers. And in terms of the age difference, how much older was George than you?

SY: He was ninety-one when he died in November, I mean... what did I say? September.

TI: September, so that meant that he was born, what year? That'd be 1920... no, let me think. 1918. Yeah, about 1918 probably.

SY: 1918.

TI: And you were born in '25, so he was about seven years older than you, roughly? Seven, eight years older?

SY: Yes, uh-huh, I think so.

TI: Good. It just helps me when I think about, just in terms of your older brother, about how much older he was than you.

<End Segment 1> - Copyright © 2009 Densho. All Rights Reserved.