Densho eNews - September

From the Director: Tom Ikeda

This summer I have been really pleased with the quality of work and commitment of our volunteers. For example, Sara Umeda, a recent college graduate, has volunteered to spend dozens of hours carefully typing a detailed list of all the people who were incarcerated at the Minidoka camp from a difficult-to-read document. It is rare to find someone willing to keep coming back to do such tedious work. When she is done, you will be able to do a simple search to find out things like dates a person was in Minidoka, which barracks she lived in, and her departure destination.

Another volunteer, Marisa Bruhns, a talented young archivist, created a useful handbook that documents our philosophy, policies, and procedures to digitize collections so that other organizations can more easily learn and benefit from our work. Marisa has that strong combination of archival experience and an understanding of technology that helps her clearly explain our work. Volunteer Tom Miller arrives at Densho after his workdays to tend to our overgrown shrubs, weed-infested walkways, and hidden rock garden. His work brings a smile to my face when I come into work because it looks so much better. He is a very humble person who often works when we aren't around, so it is even hard to thank him for his work. (Thanks Tom!)

We are fortunate to have such talented individuals spend their time doing this useful work. Do you have an expertise or a strong commitment that you want to volunteer for Densho? I have projects for an experienced grant writer, a Flash software developer, a graphics designer, or someone knowledgeable in Japanese American history who knows how to use Facebook. Contact me at [email protected] if you want to find out more or if you think you have a skill that Densho could use.

Archive Spotlight

Bob Fuchigami: The Smell of Grapes on the Other Side of the Fence

Bob Fuchigami was a teenager when he was imprisoned in the Merced Assembly Center, California, and the Amache (Granada) concentration camp, Colorado, during World War II. In this clip, Bob describes seeing and smelling the vineyard just beyond the fence at Merced. Bob Fuchigami's full interview is available in the Densho Digital Archive, and is also featured in the article on Merced in Densho's new online encyclopedia of the Japanese American experience.

>> View the interview excerpt
>> Register for the free Densho Digital Archive
>> Read the Densho Encyclopedia article on Merced

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Densho News

Densho Encyclopedia Available

The new Densho Encyclopedia was launched at the end of August and is now available for viewing at The encyclopedia is a free and publicly accessible website that provides concise, accurate, and balanced information on many aspects of the Japanese American story during World War II. There are more than 300 articles -- with many more to come -- that are extensively referenced and interlinked, and more than 550 primary sources (photographs, documents, and oral history video clips) included with the articles. Major funding for the Encyclopedia was provided by grants from the Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program, administered by the National Park Service, and by the California State Library through the California Civil Liberties Public Education Fund.

>> Visit the encyclopedia
>> Read the press release

Teacher Training Workshops in Los Angeles and Seattle

Densho is presenting a teacher training workshop in Los Angeles on Saturday, October 27th and another workshop in Seattle on Thursday, November 15th. These workshops will use materials about the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans to examine how to use primary sources in the classroom. The workshops will be led by Executive Director Tom Ikeda and Education Consultant Janet Hayakawa. Participants will receive a $100 stipend upon successful completion of the workshop. You can get more information online about the workshops and how to register.

>> For more information

Thank You Summer Interns

Funding from the 4Culture Special Projects Program made it possible to hire two summer interns. Jess Marshall and Lauren Work have helped us test new equipment and procedures while they scanned and catalogued hundreds of editions of important postwar Japanese American publications like the Northwest Times, Nisei Vue, and the Scene, which will be a boon to researchers. Both interns are university trained information specialists, bringing talent, knowledge, and energy.

>> For more information about 4Culture

Community News and Events

Support a Documentary Film Project

A Kickstarter campaign for HONOR & SACRIFICE, a documentary film focusing on Nisei veteran and MIS linguist Rgr. Roy Matsumoto, is set to launch this month by Stourwater Pictures. The documentary is about the Nisei who were incarcerated in concentration camps, enlisted in the U.S. military, and volunteered to become linguists in the Military Intelligence Service in the Pacific Theater of WWII.

>> For more information

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