History of the Okinawans in North America (1988)

Joint publication with The Okinawa Club of America

Compiled by: The Okinawa Club of America (Hokubei Okinawa Kurabu)

Translated by: Ben Kobashigawa

Hardcover: Out of Print

ISBN-10: 0-934052-10-7

Product Details: 608 pages, 6.25 x 9.25 x 1.5, with photos and indexes

Categories: Arts & Culture; Asian Americans; History; Immigration and Migration; Internment; Japan; Japanese; Narratives; War and Peace Issues

Description

The History of the Okinawans in North America fulfills a longstanding desire of the first generation (issei) of Okinawan immigrants to the United States. Compiled and published by the community itself in a form combining narrative history and existing documents, this book embodies the issei legacy to future generations of Okinawans in America. It should become an important reference work for anyone active in the Okinawan community. Many fine examples of issei writing, drawn from the long tradition of writing and publishing within the Okinawan community, have been reproduced here for the first time in English.

The Okinawan history committee began compiling this history of the Okinawan community in 1968. Compilation of the history drew on the labor of many members of the Okinawan community, men and women, iseei, kibei-nisei, and postwar immigrants. The Japanese edition was published in 1981 when the English language phase of the project began. After completion of the initial translation, the editing and publication arrangements were undertaken by the Okinawan Nisei Committee. The English language edition, translated by Ben Kobashigawa, with indexes added, was a joint publication of the Okinawa Club and the Center.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Foreword to the English Edition
Foreword to the Japanese Edition
Preface to the Japanese Edition
On Compiling a History of the People of Okinawa-ken in America
Translator's Preface

Chapter 1: Before Okinawan Immigration

  • The Castaways
    • Iwakichi, Kyukichi, and Otokichi
    • Manjirõ Nakahama
    • Joseph Heco
  • Overseas Students
    • Student Stowaway
    • Overseas Students
    • Commercial Travellers
  • Immigrants
    • The "First Year People"
    • Japanese Immigrants in California
    • Immigrants from Okinawa

See More

Chapter 2: Okinawans in America

  • The San Francisco Period: Arrival in America
    • Background
    • First Okinawan in the United States
    • First Direct Arrival to the United States
    • Other Early Direct Immigrants
    • Earliest Immigrants via Hawaii
    • First Steps
    • The First Okinawan-owned Restaurant
    • Creation of the Okinawan Kenjinkai
    • Those Who Came After 1902
    • The First Okinawan-Non-Japanese (Hakujin) Marriage
    • San Francisco Earthquake
  • The Los Angeles Period
    • Los Angeles
    • The First of Those Coming Up Through Mexico
    • Division in the Los Angeles Community
    • First Okinawan Agriculture in America
    • The School Segregation Issue and Ban on Immigration
    • Sending for Wives
    • Okinawan Pioneers in Produce Marketing
    • California’s Anti-Japanese Laws
    • Ban on Picture Brides
    • Ban on Immigration
    • Okinawans in the Fishing Industry
    • Field Piece-work Boys
    • The Reimeikai
    • The Zaibei Okinawa Seinenkai
    • The Okinawa Kaigai Kyõkai

Chapter 3: Okinawa Kenjinkai of America

  • Okinawa Seinenkai of America
    • Creation of the Okinawa Seinenkai
    • On the Long Beach Incident
    • The Arashiyama Affair
    • Seinenkai Picnic
    • Oganeku Repatriation Case
    • Conclusion
  • Fund-raising Controversies and the Okinawa Seinenkai
    • Kowa Matayoshi’s Visit
    • Shigo Toma’s Visit
    • The Visit of Fuyu Iha
    • Kenwaw Kanna’s Visit
  • The Founding of the Okinawa Kenjinkai of America
    • Background
    • Birth of the Kenjinkai
    • 1935
    • 1936
    • 1937
    • 1938
    • 1939
    • 1940
    • Crisis in the Pacific an Japanese Americans: How Do We Deal With It?
  • Founding of the Okinawa Kyokai of America
    • Founding of the Okinawa Kyokai
    • The Celebration Picnic
  • War-Time
    • Executive Order No. 9066
  • War-time Internment
    • Life in the Japanese American Relocation Camps
    • Life in the Relocation Camps
  • Okinawans Entering from Peru
    • Moving to America from Peru
    • Harsh Immigration Laws and the American Prisoner Exchange
    • Native-born Peruvian Internees After the War
    • The Peru Club in Los Angeles
    • List of the Peruvian Okinawan Internees

Chapter 4: Okinawa War Damage Relief and Reconstruction Movement

  • Background to the Relief and Reconstruction Movement
    • The End of the War and Okinawan Feeling in the United States
    • Trip to Japan to Survey the Condition of the War Victims
    • From Tokyo to Kyushu
    • Okinawan Refugees from Davao
  • Report on the Condition of the Okinawans in Japan Immediately After the War
    • Return from Japan
    • Appeal to Our Fellow Okinawans Overseas
    • Report on the Okinawan Refugees in Japan and the Okinawan Islands
    • Appeal to MacArthur Headquarters
    • “Help the Homeless Okinawan School Children”
  • The Postwar Okinawan War Damage Relief Movement
    • Origin of the New York Okinawa Relief Committee
    • The Okinawan Relief Movement Receives Government Recognition
    • Organizing Tour for a National Organization
    • Formation of the Okinawa Relief League of America
    • Formation of the Los Angeles Relief Committee
    • By-Laws of the Okinawa Relief League of America
    • Activities of the Okinawa Relief League
    • Activities of the Local Committees
    • Annual General Meeting of the Okinawa Relief League
    • Second Annual General Meeting of the Okinawa Relief League
    • Birth of the Peruvian Group’s American Okinawa Relief Organization
    • Birth of the Mexican Okinawa War Refugee Relief Society
    • Proposal for a Joint Secretariat of the Overseas Okinawan Organizations
    • Chief Executive of Okinawa Shikiya’s Reply to the Los Angeles Committee
    • From Relief League to Reconstruction
    • The 1949 Annual General Meeting of the Okinawa Reconstruction League
    • Reconstruction League Officers’ Meeting
    • Meeting of the National Board of Directors
    • First Overseas Students After the War
    • Reply from the Okinawan Civilian Administration
    • Chief Executive Shikiya’s Request Concering the Overseas Students
    • Appeal from the Okinawan Cultural Association in Tokyo
    • Request from the Okinawan National Student Council
    • Second National General Meeting of the Okinawan Reconstruction League
    • Statement of the Hawaiian Okinawa Reconstruction League
    • National Okinawan Reconstruction Picnic
    • Third National Meeting of the Okinawa Reconstruction League
    • National Officers’ Meeting
    • Second Tour of Inspection of America by the Okinawan National Leaders
    • An Extraordinary General Meeting of the Okinawan Reconstruction League
    • National Population and Employment Survey of Persons of Okinawan Descent
    • A Few Words on the Last Publication of the Kaibo Bulletin
    • Communications

Chapter 5: Okinawa Club of America

  • History of the Okinawan Club
    • 19541955
    • 1959
    • 1963
    • 1964
    • 1965
    • 1966
    • 1967
    • 1968
    • 1969
    • 1970
    • 1972
    • 1974
    • 1975
    • 1976
    • 1977
    • 1978
    • 1979
    • 1980
  • The Fujinbu – Women’s Department
    • 1954
    • 1955
    • 1956
    • 1957
    • 1959
    • 1960
    • 1961
    • 1962
    • 1963
    • 1964
    • 1965
    • 1966
    • 970-1971
    • 1974-1976
    • 1977-1979
    • 1980
  • The Seinenbu, Young People’s Department
  • By-Laws of the Okinawa Club of America
  • Activities in Other Regions
    • Washington, D.C.
    • New York City Chicago “Friends from Okinawa” Society
    • The San Francisco Area
    • Florin Area
    • Fresno Area
    • Arizona
    • Denver

Chapter 6: Work

  • Okinawan Businesses in the Los Angeles Area
    • Chodo Okutake
    • Yuko Oshiro
    • Ka’ei and Masuei Kamiya
    • Tom Seikichi and Tsuruko Asato
    • Eigoro Chinen
    • Shincho and Miyo Kinjo
    • Toku and Yoshiko Tamaki
    • Masaru and Kazuko Nakata
    • The Late Tokuju and Tsuru Uehara
    • Shinsuke and Tom Taira
    • Kitaro and Hana Yamagawa
    • Roy Gensei and Tomoe Oshiro
    • Kokyu Tamaki
    • Kame and Kamado Noguni
    • Doshu and Kana Tokeshi
    • Hideharu and Hideko Taise
    • Matsuji and Shizuko Shima
    • Eishu and Tsuru Oshiro
    • Taisa and Tsuru Yamahashi
    • Choshin and Utaki Higa
    • Anko Hirashiki and Kamado Ota
    • Shukyoku and Ethel Sayoko Kamiyama
    • Kotoku Gushiken
    • Zentei and Hisa Oshiro
    • Toshio and Yoshino Higa
    • Tokusei and Toshiko Ikehara
    • Shigemori and Kame Tamaki
    • Mikio (Mickey) Yoshitake
    • Yoshiharu Higa
    • Dick Morimasa Nishihira
    • Others
  • Okinawa Farming Around Los Angeles
    • Immigrant Farmers from Okinawa
    • Okinawan Farmers after the War
  • Trade and Agriculture in Imperial Valley Among the Okinawans
    • Imperial Valley, a Brief Description
    • Life and Conditions in the Okinawan Settlements
    • The First Settlers
    • Movement to El Centro and Heber Areas
    • Movement to the Niland Area
    • Farming and Shipping
    • Okinawans in the Shipping Business
    • Restaurants
    • Pool Halls
    • Grocery Stores in Brawley
    • The End of Okinawan Farming and Trade
  • Okinawan Fishing
    • Pioneer in Oyster Farming: Shinsho Miyagi
    • The Miyagi Family Monument
    • Others in the Fishing Industry
  • Railroad Workers
  • Gardening
    • The Beginning
    • War and Conscription
    • End of the War
    • Return to Gardening Work
    • Spread of Okinawan Music
    • Evolution of Landscaping and Gardening Work
    • Gardening and Bonsai
    • The Gardeners’ Associations and the Federation
    • Organization and Purpose of the Federation
    • Activities of the Okinawan Members
    • Gardening Work Now
    • The Future of Japanese American Gardeners
  • Life of the Early Okinawan Migrant Farmworkers
    • The "Blanket Boys"
    • Initial Condition of the Migrant Farmworkers
    • Trail of the Migrant Farmworker
    • The Wheel of History
  • Fruitstand Boy
  • Miscellaneous Notes

Chapter 7: Cultural Activities

  • Sports
    • Baseball (Before the War)
    • Tennis and Ping Pong
    • Golf Karate
    • Baseball (After the War)
  • Literature
    • Introduction
    • Tanka
    • Ryuka-Okinawan songs
    • Shi-Poems
    • Haiku
    • Short Stories
    • Essays
    • Works by Okinawan Individuals and Organizations in America
  • Performing Arts
    • “Rabbit Dance” on Television
    • Okinawan Performing Arts in Southern California (The Pioneers)
    • Chusuke Iha (Pioneer)
    • Okinawa Performing Arts (The Picnic)
    • The Hokubei Okinawa Geino Kenkyukai
    • The Ryukyu Ongaku Dokokai
    • North American Branch of the Nomura-ryu Ongaku Kyokai
    • Katsujiro Nakasone
    • Formation of the Hokubei Okinawa Geino Hozonkai
    • Rykoin Nakama
    • The Normura-ryu Miyagi Genseikai
    • Eikichi Miyagi
    • Isokichi Kanashiro
    • The Nomura-ryu Ongaku Kenkyukai in Los Angeles
    • Gen’ei Hokama
    • Genjiro Sakihara
    • Yaju Ganiku
    • Yuki Onaga
    • Matsumitsu Oyakawa
    • Matsuko Tokeshi
    • The Oyakawa Shinseikai
    • Kimiko Miyahira
    • Jiute
    • Dancers
    • Okinawa Taiko Drum Study Group
    • The Eisa Paranku (Prayer Drum) Club
    • Sumi Kawakami
    • Keiko Tomoyose
    • Maji-kina Aiko
    • Misako Arakaki
    • Yasukazu Takushi
    • Progress of the Nomura-ryu Sokyoku Hokubei Koyokai Branch
    • Koto Music Societies in North America
    • Miyo Miyagi
    • Sachiko Kakzau
    • Haruko Shikiya
    • Kameyo Yagi
    • Natsuko Nakaya
    • The Shima Minyo (Folk Music) Club
    • The Nomura-ryu Ongaku Hozonkai
    • Seiryu Oshiro
    • An Evening Concert of Okinawan Music
    • American Ryukyuan Friendship Concert
    • The Charm of Okinawan Dance
    • The Nisei Week Festival Parade
  • Activities of the Cultural Department of the Okinawa Club
    • Junior Golf Club
    • Bonsai Club
    • The Sight-seeing Group
    • Public Lecture Group
    • Go Club
  • Religion
    • Buddhism Among Okinawans
    • Christianity

Chapter 8: Profiles of Okinawan Individuals in North America

  • Portraits of the Pioneers
    • Kamado Ota: Okinawan Pioneer Produce Merchant
    • Gongoro Nakamura: A Man Who Served the Japanese Community
    • Seishu Aniya
    • Hiroshi
    • Yoshizato
    • Shukyoku Kamiyama
    • Kosuke Uema
    • Seiei Taira
    • An Episode in the Life of Tokuta Nishime
    • Sanra Yakahi
    • Anko An Episode in the Life of Tokuta Nishime
    • Sanra Yakahi
    • Anko Hirashiki
    • Toshiko Hirashiki
    • Chodo Okutake
    • Shinsuke Taira
    • Tom Kasuzo Taira
    • Iho Tamaki
    • Kenden Yabe
    • Seishin Taira
    • Chushichiro Kaneshi
    • Seijuro Uyema
    • Koyu Taira
    • Kitaro Yamagawa
    • Zen’ei Nakaya (formerly, Kadekaru)
    • Shingi Nakamura
    • Uwa Mayeshiro
    • Tokujin Asato
    • Kintaro Yogi
    • Takashi Higa
    • Gen’ei Hokama
    • Zenshiro Teruya
    • Jinkichi Matsuda
    • Shinsei Kochi
    • Shoko Naku
    • Shigemori Tamaki
    • Ka’ei Kamiya
    • Yoshihiko Onaga
    • Choshin Higa
    • Ren’yu Higa
    • Edward Shoichi Tamae
    • Charles Masuei Kamiya
    • Eigoro Chinen
    • Tsugo Miyashiro
    • Kin’ei Toyama
    • Kishiro Nakada
    • Koki Nakamura
    • Eisho Kishimoto
    • Frank Higashi (formerly, Agariye)
    • Tokko Hamamoto
    • The Venerable Nanshin Okamoto
  • Other Contributors to the Okinawan Community and Its Organizations
  • Profiles of Prominent Okinawan Nisei
    • Kei Uchima
    • Sumio Matsuda
    • Edward Tokeshi
    • Shoan and Shizuko Yamauchi
    • Fred Mitsuo Shima
    • William Ginoza
    • Carl Minoru Tamaki
    • Yuki Oshiro
    • Frank (Tatsuo) Ige
    • Yoshio Kinjo
    • George Ige
    • Robert Jun Higa
    • Robert Masao Nakamura
    • Haruo Yamashiro
    • Roger Akira Tamaki
    • Lieutenant Commander Neil Oshiro
    • Dr. Hideo Asato
    • Dr. Evan Oyakawa
    • Minoru Paul Nakada and Henry Asato
    • Gen’ichi Paul Miyahira
    • Chieko Kamisato
  • Unity and Progress Among the Okinawans in the Outskirs of Los Angeles
    • James Takeichi OShiro
    • Matsutoshi Sunabe
    • Shigeo Oshiro

Chapter 9: Reminiscences

  • My Sixty Years in Washington, D.C. by Shokan Shima
  • Tokuta Nishime Remebered by Kenden Yabe
  • The Struggles of the First Women Immigrants by Takeo Kaneshiro
  • The Nisei and Renunciation of Citizenship by Takeo Kaneshiro
  • The Popular "Koji from Nago" by Shigemori Tamaki
  • The Long Life of Mrs. Hana Yamagawa by Shigemori Tamaki
  • My Arrival in America and the San Francisco Earthquake by Ansei Takehara
  • A Contribution to the "History of the Okinawa People in North America" by Tojin Taira
  • Memories of the War by Koyo Tamanaha
  • Fifty Years of Life in America by Choshin Oda
  • Pioneer Graves by Jikai Yamazato
  • The Southern California Branch of the Okinawa Kaigai Kyokai by Shoko Nakamura
  • Formation of the Okinawa Kenjinkai of Southern California by Eigoro Chinen
  • The Long Beach Incident and the Southern California Branch of the Okinawa Kaigai Kyokai by Jack Yamashiro
  • Sad Tale of an Immigrant (Imin Aiwa) by Shinsei Kochi
  • Appendex: Register of Names
  • Donors List for the Okinawa Kyuen/Fukko Renmei Fund
  • The Record of Deceased Okinawans in North America and the War Dead
  • Afterword
  • Photograph Section
  • Index of Names
  • Index of Organizations, Okinawan Music, Dance and Selected Publications

List of Illustrations

  • Keizo Kawatsu’s Grave
  • Original Members of the Reimeikai
  • Mrs. Pratt, Granddaughter of Dr. B.J. Bettelheim
  • President Franklin D. Roosevelt
  • English Section
  • Seikichi Toyama’s Wedding
  • Monument at Manzanar Relocation Camp
  • Nisei Week Young People’s Department
  • Nisel Week: The Fujinbu
  • Memorial Service for the American Okinawan Dead
  • Florin People, Around Modesto
  • Fresno Okinawa Fujinkai
  • The First Japanese Christian Group in Arizona
  • Okutake Chodo’s Restaurant
  • Star Produce Co.
  • A Farming Scene from Imperial Valley Around 1927
  • A Farming Scene from Imperial Valley Around 1930
  • The OK Seinenkai Baseball Team
  • Kentsu Yabe
  • Dance by Eisho Kishimoto
  • Majikina Aiko
  • Misao Arakashi
  • Bonsai by Frank Goya
  • Work by Eisho Kishimoto
  • Kamada Oto
  • Gongoro Nakamura
  • Chodo Okutake
  • Kenden Yabe
  • Tokujin Asato
  • Gen’ei Hokama
  • Chosuke Miyahira
  • Jinkichi Matsuda
  • Shinsei Kochi
  • Shigemori Tamaki
  • Nanshin Okamoto
  • Grave of Ryoko Uesato
  • Mr. and Mrs. James Oshiro
  • Shokan Shima
  • Tomb of Tokuta Nishime
  • Koji of Nago
  • Anmen Takehara
  • Editorial Committee of the Hokubei Okinawajin Shi
  • Nisei Review Committee

Photograph Section

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Reviews:

"This is a superb English translation of a community history, originally published in the Japanese language, devoted to the Japanese people on the continental United States who originated from Okinawa Prefecture. Okinawan immigrants and their American-born descendants constituted a distinct subgroup among Japanese-Americans. This volume presents an insider's perspective on the unique characteristics of this subgroup rooted in Okinawan history and culture, the group's struggle for survival in the United States. The book should be of interest to all Japanese-Americans and anyone else interested in the American ethnic experience." - Yuji Ichioka, author, The Issei: The World of the First Generation Japanese Immigrants, 1885-1924

Related Center Press Publications:

Amerasia Journal 13:2 Japanese Americans in the 1930s and 1940s (1986-7).
Amerasia Journal 19:1 Japanese American Internment: Fiftieth Anniversary Commemorative Issue (1993).
Herzig-Yoshinaga, Aiko & Lee, Marjorie (2011). Speaking Out for Personal Justice: Site Summaries of Testimonies and Witnesses Registry from the U.S. Commission on Wartime Relocation & Internment of Civilians Hearings (CWRIC), 1981.
Higa, Karin (Ed.) (1992). The View from Within: The Japanese American Art from the Internment Camp, 1942 - 1945.

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