Densho Digital Archive
Preserving California's Japantowns Collection
Title: Kiyo Nikaido Morimoto Interview
Narrator: Kiyo Nikaido Morimoto
Interviewers: Jill Shiraki (primary); Tom Ikeda (secondary)
Location: Sacramento, California
Date: December 9, 2009
Densho ID: denshovh-mkiyo-01-0017

<Begin Segment 17>

TI: Okay, so they closed down Jerome, and your choice was you'd rather go Amache than Gila River.

KM: Yes. My father said he'd rather go Amache. So then I said, "Well, all right," then the government said, "You have to teach shorthand."

TI: Okay, so you were lucky because you had the shorthand teaching experience that allowed you to select where you wanted to go.

KM: Yeah.

TI: And as you were doing this, I'm trying to figure out, when did your husband go to Chicago? Was he still with you or had he gone to Chicago?

KM: No, he had gone from Jerome.

TI: Okay, so your husband goes to Chicago, you're with your mother, and now you go to Amache.

KM: Amache.

TI: Where you're going to meet your father, your father was coming in.

KM: Yes.

TI: Okay, good. So you're at Amache to be a shorthand teacher. Did you continue with ikebana at Amache? Did you have any ikebana?

KM: No, because no one was teaching.

TI: Okay. but the other big event was you had your second child at Amache. So describe to me the healthcare facilities. What were the facilities like when you gave birth?

KM: It was, they had a nice hospital. We had a nice hospital. And the doctors were very nice. Very nice and clean.

TI: Now, were the doctors white or were they Japanese?

KM: I don't remember the doctor.

TI: And how about the nurses? Do you remember the nurses? Were they Japanese or were they white?

KM: No, they were white. Because there were lots of volunteers that came. Because even in Jerome, I didn't know how to teach shorthand or typing, but this lady, I was friends with her for a long time. After camp, I went to go visit her in Jacksonville. But she volunteered to teach. And since she was teaching also, commuting, and she taught me how to teach the students.

JS: So she was from the town? She volunteered to come in to the camp to teach.

KM: Yes, she came, commuted. She was from Jacksonville, so when I went to Mississippi... it was Mississippi, though, she was living there. And I met her after so many years.

JS: So you kept in touch? You corresponded with her?

KM: Yes, uh-huh.

<End Segment 17> - Copyright © 2009 Densho and Preserving California's Japantowns. All Rights Reserved.