Densho eNews - November

From the Director: Tom Ikeda

The idea of creating a virtual museum about the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans started 17 years ago in community meetings in an old church building in Bellevue, Washington. I remember returning home from these meetings thinking of the possibilities people were talking about -- like having every student in America being able to listen to Japanese Americans who experienced being incarcerated during World War II. My mind raced because I could see how personal computers and the emerging web could make this possible, but what excited me the most was seeing the passion people had about sharing the largely unknown American story of the wartime incarceration with the whole country.

Seventeen years later we've come a long way with making over 700 video-recorded oral histories available on the web and we are still excited about sharing the Japanese American incarceration story. We enjoy the challenge of using technology to amplify and improve our work. And most of all we are grateful for the tremendous support of so many of you to allow us to pursue our passions. Please join these supporters by donating online or sending a check to Densho at 1416 S Jackson Street, Seattle, WA 98144. And drop me a line at [email protected] and let me know what you think about Densho or what we should be doing.

Archive Spotlight

Fred Shiosaki: Meeting a Member of the "Lost Battalion" After the War

Fred Shiosaki served with the 442nd Regimental Combat Team during World War II, including one of the campaigns, the "Rescue of the Lost Battalion." In this clip, he remembers how he felt upon meeting a soldier from the Texan battalion after the war. Fred's full interview is available in the Densho Digital Archive.

>> View the interview excerpt
>> Register for the free Densho Digital Archive

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Densho News

Densho Encyclopedia Presented at National Social Studies Conference

Next week the new Densho Encyclopedia will be presented at the annual National Council for the Social Studies Conference by project manager Geoff Froh and encyclopedia editor Brian Niiya. 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 that are extensively referenced and interlinked, and more than 550 primary sources (photographs, documents, and oral history video clips) included with the articles.

>> Visit the encyclopedia

A Teacher Training Workshop in your City?

Two weeks ago the Densho team was at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles training 35 teachers and 25 museum volunteers. Next week we will be training 60 teachers at the National Council of Social Studies Conference. These workshops use materials about the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans to examine how to use primary sources in the classroom. The workshops are led by Executive Director Tom Ikeda and Education Consultant Janet Hayakawa. Contact [email protected] if you want a workshop in your city.

>> For more information

Community News and Events

Book Event - Nisei Soldiers Break Their Silence

Please join us on Saturday, December 15th at 3pm at the Wing Luke Museum for a book event with author Linda Tamura. Linda will talk about her new book, Nisei Soldiers Break Their Silence: Coming Home to Hood River. The book shares the experiences of Japanese Americans (Nisei) who served in the U.S. Army during World War II, fighting on the front lines in Italy and France and serving as linguists in the South Pacific. The soldiers were from Hood River, Oregon, where their families were landowners and fruit growers. Town leaders, including veterans' groups, attempted to prevent their return after the war and stripped their names from the local war memorial. This book event is sponsored by Union Bank.

Only 7 days Left to Support a Documentary Film Project

A Kickstarter campaign for HONOR & SACRIFICE, a documentary focusing on Nisei veteran and MIS linguist Roy Matsumoto, has only 7 days left to raise its goal of $30,000 to produce the film. The documentary will be 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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