Arthur A. Hansen

Art Hansen is Professor Emeritus of History and Asian American Studies at California State University, Fullerton, where he retired in 2008 as the director of the Center for Oral and Public History.  Between 2001 and 2005, he served as Senior Historian at the Japanese American National Museum.

Updated October 2009

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Nikkei Agriculture in Orange County, California, the Masuda Farm Family, and the American Way of Redressing Racism - Part 5 of 6

Read part 4 >> On December 18, 1944, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in the Endo v. the United States of America case unanimously determined that the government could no longer detain Japanese American citizens which the government had conceded as being loyal to the United States. This decision helped lead to the re-opening of the West Coast for resettlement by Japanese Americans in 1945. However, many among the 80,000 still imprisoned in the War Relocation Authority camps were reluctant to return to their prewar West Coast communities because of reading reports and hearin…

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Nikkei Agriculture in Orange County, California, the Masuda Farm Family, and the American Way of Redressing Racism - Part 4 of 6

Read part 3 >> By late December of 1941, the armed services ceased accepting Japanese Americans either as volunteers or draftees, even though the Selective Service Act barred discrimination. Consistent with this discriminatory policy, Nisei were classified not as 1-A, but rather as 4-C, the classification assigned to “enemy aliens.” [inline:NoJaps_sm.jpg] In response to a great deal of agitation from the old anti-Japanese forces in California and elsewhere on the West Coast and in scattered parts of the United States, on February 19, 1942, President Roosevelt issued E…

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Nikkei Agriculture in Orange County, California, the Masuda Farm Family, and the American Way of Redressing Racism - Part 3 of 6

Read part 2 >> Even before Japan’s December 7, 1941, bombing of the U.S.’ Hawaiian naval station at Pearl Harbor, then home to the main part of the American fleet, precipitated the Masuda family’s eventual exclusion from designated West Coast military areas, along with the rest of the approximately 2000 other Orange Countians of Japanese descent, some of the county’s Nisei were required to exchange their agricultural attire for military apparel. [inline:PearlHarbor_sm.jpg] This occurred because of the passage by Congress of the Selective Training and Servi…

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Nikkei Agriculture in Orange County, California, the Masuda Farm Family, and the American Way of Redressing Racism - Part 2 of 6

Read part 1 >> Having now provided a snapshot of the pre-World War II Japanese American community in Orange County during the so-called “Issei Pioneer Era,” we need to shift our attention to the main focus of my presentation tonight, which I have titled “Nikkei Agriculture in Orange County, California, the Masuda Farm Family, and the American Way of Redressing Racism.” Based on two oral history interviews done in 2006 with Masao “Mas” Masuda by, respectively, Susan Shoho Uyemura, for the Japanese American Living Legacy organization, and Takamich…

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Nikkei Agriculture in Orange County, California, the Masuda Farm Family, and the American Way of Redressing Racism - Part 1 of 6

(Presentation at a public program in support of New Birth of Freedom: Civil War to Civil Rights in California at the Orange County Agricultural and Nikkei Heritage Museum, Fullerton Arboretum, California State University, Fullerton on October 19, 2011)As we gather here this evening next to a building called the Orange County Agricultural and Nikkei Heritage Museum, we need to reflect on the integral relationship between the history of Orange County agriculture and that of the county’s Americans of Japanese ancestry. And while doing so, we should keep in mind that the Masuda family of O…

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