Densho Digital Archive
Preserving California's Japantowns Collection
Title: Kay Ikeda Interview
Narrator: Kay Ikeda
Interviewers: Jill Shiraki (primary); Tom Ikeda (secondary)
Location: Fresno, California
Date: March 10, 2010
Densho ID: denshovh-ikay-01-0001

<Begin Segment 1>

JS: Today is March 10, 2010, and we are in Fresno interviewing Kay Ikeda. And my name is Jill Shiraki, and I'm interviewing with Tom Ikeda, and behind the camera is Dana Hoshide. So can you state your name and tell us when and where you were born?

KI: I was born in Fresno, California, 1922.

JS: 1922. And what was your family name?

KI: Arase, A-R-A-S-E. That's a very uncommon Japanese name. 'Cause people will say "A-race" instead of Arase.

JS: So can you tell us about your father first and when he came to the United States?

KI: Well, he came from Japan, he came from Kumamoto-ken, Kamachiki-gun, Kosamachi. That's where he was. And he came to Seattle and entered United States then.

JS: Approximately what year?

KI: I don't know the year.

JS: You're not sure? So how long was he in Seattle?

KI: Not very long, because he had to find a job. I think he came down to Fresno.

JS: So what did he do when he first came to Fresno?

KI: Well, when he first came, and then when he had a wife, they had a tofu company in Del Rey. And then when my mother passed away, my dad moved to Fresno. And he moved into 614 F Street, and that's where we lived until I got married and I left Fresno.

JS: Okay. So tell us about your mother, what her name was, and when did she come to the United States?

KI: Her name is Ura Honda, and I don't know the year she came, 'cause I never did know that part.

JS: So she must have came when she got married, perhaps.

KI: No, my dad said he went to Kumamoto, Kosamachi, to look for the best-looking girl in the village. And he said that's what he did, and he brought her back to the United States. So I don't know what year it was, but I heard that story from my dad.

TI: Oh, that's a good story.

<End Segment 1> - Copyright © 2010 Densho and Preserving California's Japantowns. All Rights Reserved.