Title: Letter to Mollie Wilson from Sadae (Lillian) Nishioka, c. 1942 (ddr-janm-1-95)

Densho ID: ddr-janm-1-95



Poston, Arizona


Dearest Mollie:


What-cha know hoss? How are you feeling and how are you getting along in school? We are all fine, except Sako got sick this morning from something the kitchen fed us. I think it was the pork in the slap suey. Some other kids on our block got sick too. She’s better now though. It’s a wonder I didn’t get sick. You know how weak I am. Kenny grew pretty lot after he came here. I did too. I’m getting fatter too. Here, in Poston, most of the kids are calling each other “hoss,” “Jack,” and “Jackson”. If you went to the school play yesterday and someone asks you if you went to it, you could say, “You know it (hoss, Jack or Jackson!)” If it’s hot and someone says, “Gee it’s hot today”, you could say the same thing. If you get surprised at…


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…something you could say, “Jumpin jive!” or “Ain’t that a boogie!” and someone else could say, “It sure is a boogie!” If someone tells you something that is hard to believe, you say, “No hay hoss?” or “No jive?” or “No lie hoss?” These are some of the sayings and phrases used in Poston.


Chiyeko hasn’t written because she was working on camouflage nets and now she has to go to school. Most of the older boys went out of state to pick sugar beets.  Tateishi went too. 


There are three Boyle Height baseball teams in Poston: Boyle Height Indians, Golden Bears, and Hollywood Stars. The Hollywood Stars are all Boyle Height girls out of high school. Mary Takahashi, pitcher (Man, is she good hoss!) Mariko Matsumoto, Masako Yoshida, Cecelia Kawasaki, (the half Japanese & half Irish girl from Roosevelt) and some others.


Last Saturday, Sunday, and Monday…


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…we had a county fair– booths– sling shot, bingo, basketball, baseball, bow & arrow, penny pitch, ring the coins, and others. Eats– tacos, tamales, hot dogs, fritos, cracker jack, orange ade, peanuts, candy, and others. Dances– Saturday night, Sun. afternoon, and Sun. night. There were exhibits, talent shows, fashion show, and boxing and wrestling matches too. It sure was a lot of fun. Camp 1, 2, & 3’s orchestras took turns playing at the dances. Camp 1’s band is really solid. Camp 2’s is not as good, and Camp 3’s is lousy. Hideo Kawano, the professional drummer from Stevenson, is the leader of our band. He’s only 15 years old. Mary Takahashi’s brother plays the trumpet for the band. They play Blues on Parade, Johnson Ray, At Last, I Remember You, In My Solitude, My Devotion, Moonlight Serenade, and others. We had a queen for the fair too; chosen from Camp 1, 2, & 3 girls. The fair was…


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…open from 2 o’clock till 9 or 10:30 at night everyday. Trucks were going back and forth all of the time from Camp 2 & 3 so they could be at the fair & dances too. Camp 2 people are from Salinas and Camp 3 people are from Salinas and San Diego. In Camp 3 boys wearing long, bright, flannel plaid shirts out are a fad. In Camp 2, red hats, and in Camp 1, long shirts out. It looks like they’re wearing night shirts. Well, back to the fair. It’s really something to rave about Jackson! Kiyoko Fukuda was one of the attendants. These are the girls that were running Hisako Nakaichi, Reiko Nakamura, Rose Nishi, Ritsuko Kawakami, June Ono, Fumi Iwanaga, Nancy Karakane, Helen Wada & others. Nancy withdrew. Friday night, right before the fair opened, we had the coronation ball. Camp 3’s orchestra played. The queen, princesses, and the attendants all wore evening gowns made by…


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…the sewing school and which they could keep. Nancy and I and two other couples went with Orange County boys. We had to wear hose. So far I’ve been to 3 scheduled dances, 2 quad party dances, Firemen’s Ball– Valley boy, Back to School Dance,– Orange County boy, Coronation Ball– Orange County boy and Sunday night’s fair dance– Boyle Heights boy.


We started a Girl Reserves club and Mary Takahashi and Grace Morioka are helping to organize it. Just the girls I go around with and I seem to be the only ones interested but I hope there’ll be others to join. The name of our club is “Hy-lites.” We had installation the other Thursday. I’m vice and Nancy, Sec, and Terry Tsuchimori, Athletic manager.


School started on Oct. 5. High school starts from the 9th grade and they go by the year so all the winter graduates have to study an extra semester. School is held in partitioned recreation…


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…halls. Some kids have to travel all around the camp for classes. From 8 A.M. to 10 A.M. I have social studies– American teacher, Block 2. From 11A.M. to 12 A.M. I have bookkeeping– Japanese teacher, Block 18. From 3 P.M. to 4 P.M. I have sewing– Japanese teacher, Block 45. We don’t have as much homework as we did in L.A. Friday, we had a Halloween party in our social studies class. Saturday we had a Halloween quad party and dance. The junior, senior, freshman, and sophomore classes went cotton picking in Parker Valley. They money earned by each class goes into each class treasury. This coming Friday we are having a junior party and dance. On the 21 our club is giving a cotton & cords dance and trying to make the room look like a barn. All of us girls are going to wear gingham. Wish us luck so it’ll turn out a success. On Thanksgiving, they’re having a dance at the Firemen’s station with Camp 1’s orchestra. They have a petition out for Kazuo Kusada for Senior president. Well, that’s all the news for now. So long– hoss!


See – dae