Saturday, November 28, 2009

Portrait: Jimi Yamaichi

Jimi Yamaichi was the fourth person I photographed for this project. Jimi's family was originally incarcerated at the Pomona Assembly Center, and then at the Heart Mountain (Wyoming) internment camp. When the family was moved to the Tule Lake internment camp in Northern California, Jimi took a job supervising construction of the barracks at Tule Lake. At one point he had 250 men working under his supervision.

(Photo by Andy Frazer)
Jimi still has a razor-sharp memory of the time during and after internment. He is also considered to be an authority on the design and construction of the facilities at Tule Lake, and he lead the construction of the new home of the Japanese-American Museum of San Jose. He is currently the Curator of the JAMsj.

Jimi was the first person who worked with me on an extensive audio interview:
  • Discussing the importance of the Japanese-American Museum in San Jose: Listen
  • The difficulties of resettlement : Listen
  • Discussing how Isseis never complained: Listen
  • Amusing story about Isseis helping each other out: Listen
  • Isseis would not talk about how hard it was: Listen
  • Eiichi Sakauye and farming at Heart Mountain Internment Camp: Listen
  • Eiichi Sakauye and the Japanese-American legacy: Listen
  • Discussing how we are all Americans: Listen 
  • Parallels between Japanese-American interment and the current challenges for American-Muslims: Listen 

You can also read the Transcript of the above interviews. 

    (Photo by Andy Frazer)
      For more information about Jimi Yamaichi, please also read A Salute to a JAMsj Visionary: The Unrelenting Passion of Jimi Yamaichi

        1 comment:

        1. Hello-

          My name is Timothy Lombard and I teach at LPS High School (behind Overfelt in San Jose). I am currently teaching about WWII and I spend a great deal of time talking about Japanese Internment Camps. It would be wonderful to have a guest speaker come and talk with juniors about the experience.


          Timothy Lombard (408)-367-9537