California State University Japanese American Digitization Project: An Exhibit

Before the War

Japanese Americans in the West: Between 1885 and 1924, 380,000 Japanese immigrated to Hawaii and the mainland United States. Despite success at creating communities, institutions, farms and businesses, the Japanese in the U.S. only faced racism and anti-Japanese sentiment. Laws throughout this period prevented this first generation of immigrants (Issei) from becoming citizens, owning land, attending public schools, and marrying whites.  Even second-generation Japanese Americans (Nisei), faced discrimination in employment and housing as well as in other community activities, although they spoke English and were American citizens. This “yellow peril,” though not unlike discrimination against other immigrant groups, was especially virulent in the West Coast. Despite these impediments, Japanese Americans became part of the fabric of the Western U.S. in the 1920s and 1930s. 

Source: Densho Encyclopedia
Image Source: Japan Day Parade

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