Japanese American National Museum Store Online

The award-winning Museum Store of the Japanese American National Museum features distinctive Asian American merchandise for all occasions and generations. Their unique product line represents the essence of the Japanese American experience, while also promoting an appreciation of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity. All proceeds from the Museum Store support Museum programs and exhibitions.

The articles in this series were originally written for the Japanese American National Museum’s online store [janmstore.com]  to give a deeper understanding of the authors, artists, and traditions featured in the store. 

media en

Behind the Scenes of “Old Man River” (DVD)

Throughout his life, the late actor Jerry Fujikawa (ChinatownM*A*S*H,Taxi) harbored a secret that even his children didn’t know about.

As one of Hollywood’s busiest Asian-American performers, he spent over three decades in the public eye. But privately, few were able to penetrate his characteristic silence about his past. Hidden in the shadows of his young adulthood during World War II was a surprise that would leave his daughter stunned and questioning everything she thought she knew about him—and about herself.

In the film Old Man River (adapted from her acclaimed, one-woman, off-Broadway play and …

lea más

community en

City Girls: The Nisei Social World in Los Angeles, 1920-1950

In City Girls: The Nisei Social World in Los Angeles, 1920-1950, author Professor Valerie Matsumoto has opened a time capsule in the vaults of American history, zeroing in on the lives of Nisei women in Los Angeles and their exploits of club and community involvements spanning three decades—prewar, World War II, and postwar.

City Girls chronicles the Nisei women’s roles as “markers of family respectability” and visible community representatives during a time replete with pervasive social and economic barriers. The unjust exclusionary practices of their times—observed at beaches, hotels, restaurants, amusement parks, and schools—gave rise to the formation of …

lea más

identity en

Author Hiroshi Kashiwagi: From Togan Soup to Plums Can Wait and Beyond, the Life of an American

“Why was I, an American citizen, thrown in prison without cause, without due process? I had registered for the draft, as required of citizens of my age and sex in 1942; why were they questioning my loyalty now? How could they do that? … If they restored my status as a rightful citizen, let me go free, out of this prison, I would do anything required of me. Why should I answer the questions?”

Regarding the loyalty questionnaire, or registration, such were the thoughts of a bright young man forced to leave his life behind for insert-euphemism-here. No matter what …

lea más

war en

Author Lane Hirabayashi: A Family Affair - Part 2

Read Part 1 >>

Perhaps the most important takeaway that we can apply to our own lives is how Gordon practiced what he preached. Combined with his Quaker membership and his early roots observing the honesty and integrity of his parents and other cooperative members, Gordon masterfully walked the fine line of not only being unapologetic for his beliefs, but also not being disrespectful of others who either did not share his beliefs or complied with the WWII orders and joined the draft anyway. Evidenced by so many non-Japanese Americans to whom Gordon was so dear, to his interactions with …

lea más

war en

Author Lane Hirabayashi: A Family Affair - Part 1

“Let me add, however, that in refusing to register, I am well aware of the excellent qualities of the army and government personnel connected with the prosecution of this exclusion order. They are men of the finest type, and I sincerely appreciate their sympathetic and honest efforts. Nor do I intend to cast any shadow upon the Japanese and the other Nisei who have registered for evacuation. They have faced tragedy admirably. I am objecting to the principle of this order, which denies the rights of human beings, including citizens.”

 —Gordon Hirabayashi, May 13, 1942

This ability to separate the …

lea más


A Principled Stand actor Atomettes author book city girls clubs coram nobis court case cynthia gates fujikawa film gordon hirabayashi Hiroshi Kashiwagi internment janm Japanese American National Museum jerry fujikawa Jim Hirabayashi JUGS lane hirabayashi Los Angeles loyalty questionnaire memoir migration nisei