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Interview with Janet Tahara Uehara

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Title:Interview with Janet Tahara Uehara
Contributors:Nishimoto, Warren (interviewer)
Kodama-Nishimoto, Michi (interviewer)
Uehara, Janet Tahara (interviewee)
LC Subject Headings:Oral history
Date Issued:2014
Publisher:Center for Oral History, Social Science Research Institute, University of Hawaii at Manoa
Series:Unspoken Memories: Oral Histories of Hawaii Internees at Jerome, Arkansas
Description:Janet Tahara Uehara, daughter of Kameo and Iwa Tahara, was born in 1925 in Hiroshima-ken, Japan. Her father, a priest and teacher, brought the family to Lāwaʻi, Kaua‘i in 1935. He filled a vacancy at the Shinto shrine where he conducted ceremonies and blessings. Her mother taught sewing and cooking. On the night of December 7, 1941, Kameo Tahara was removed from his home and detained at a facility in Kapa‘a, Kaua‘i. Later, he was moved to Sand Island Detention Center on O‘ahu. Iwa Tahara’s son by a previous marriage, Shigeo Fujino, a Shinto priest at Näwiliwili, Kaua‘i, was similarly detained. In late December 1942, Iwa Tahara, her daughter, and daughter-in-law (spouse of Shigeo Fujino) were given only three days’ notice to pack their belongings for their removal to Honolulu and the U.S. Mainland. Arriving in Jerome War Relocation Center, Arkansas, in January 1943, the women were disappointed not to see their men. The men remained incarcerated at several camps before being sent to Arkansas about a year and a half later. As Jerome War Relocation Center was about to close, the Fujinos and Taharas were sent to Tule Lake Segregation Center in California. Shigeo Fujino was an ardent supporter of Japan; Kameo Tahara had expressed a desire to return to Japan. At war’s end, the Fujinos settled in Japan. But, with a change of heart, the Taharas returned to Hawai‘i. Kameo Tahara later assumed the priest’s post at Kato Jinja in Honolulu. Janet obtained U.S. citizenship. She and Richard Uehara raised four children. She has eighteen grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren.
Pages/Duration:48 pages
Rights:Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States
Appears in Collections: Unspoken Memories: Oral Histories of Hawaii Internees at Jerome, Arkansas

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