Oregon Nikkei Endowment

Japanese American History Museum
A project of Oregon Nikkei Endowment

121 NW 2nd Ave
Portland, OR  97209
(503) 224-1458

Museum hours:
Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Sunday, noon to 3 p.m.

$5 admission,
free for Friends of Oregon Nikkei Endowment

Upcoming Activities for Oregon Nikkei Endowment

Current Exhibit
Yellow Terror: The Collections and Paintings of Roger Shimomura
Open to the public through July 16, 2017

First Thursday – July 6, 4-7pm
Free and open to the public

Yellow Terror is a rare opportunity to view Roger Shimomura's artwork alongside his extensive collection of memorabilia and objects depicting racial stereotypes of Asians and Asian Americans, recently donated to the Wing Luke Museum in Seattle. In his signature Pop Art style, Shimomura's paintings uncover and challenge the role of the media and material culture to define the American norm while establishing the perpetual Other. Visit our exhibits page to learn more.


Minidoka PilgrimageMinidoka Pilgrimage
Thursday-Sunday, July 6-9, 2017

In 1942, close to 13,000 people of Japanese ancestry, many of whom were American citizens, were removed from their homes in the Pacific Northwest and sent to a desolate "incarceration camp" near Twin Falls, Idaho. This summer, the 15th annual pilgrimage will take place with former incarcerees, their families, and friends - from Seattle, Portland and across the nation - to the former Minidoka Camp in Idaho.

The Minidoka Pilgrimage is an opportunity to learn, share memories, and ask questions about the Minidoka experience. Participation is limited, so sign up early. Learn more and register at www.minidokapilgrimage.org.

Minidoka Center Field Project
at the Minidoka National Historic Site

The goal of the Center Field Project is to re-construct one of the baseball fields at Minidoka and its supporting structures, including scoreboard, backstop, player benches, and exhibit panels.

Minidoka baseballBaseball played a key role in sustaining the Japanese Americans who were incarcerated at the Minidoka War Relocation Center from 1942-45. Many camp residents—youth and adults, male and female—played baseball or softball on one of the many fields throughout the camp.

Field-In-A-Day is based on the 1952 Farm-In-A-Day event on property that was part of the historic Minidoka site. Approximately 1500 volunteers built a two bedroom home, dug irrigation canals, built corrals, and planted crops — all in a single day. On Saturday, May 28th, individuals and groups joined Friends of Minidoka and park staff in rebuilding one of the baseball fields that were interspersed among the 44 residential blocks.

Support the Minidoka Center Field Project by volunteering for Field-In-A-Day, making a donation, or purchasing a special commemorative baseball (a portion of sales supports the Center Field Project). The baseball ($10, case costs extra) is available for purchase at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center. Please visit www.nps.gov for more information.

Resources & Services
Check out our Resources page to learn more about the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center's programs, which provide tangible reminders of the richness and vitality that ethnic minorities can bring to societies that hold sacred the rights of its citizens and regard as a blessing the diversity of its people.

Other Community Events
Please visit Discover Nikkei for more information about upcoming events in the area and around the world:

Portland Japanese Garden
Calligraphy by Yoshiyasu FujiiInk, Paper, and Soul: The Calligraphy of Yoshiyasu Fujii
May 27 - June 11, 2017
at the Portland Japanese Garden

Master Calligrapher Yoshiyasu Fujii began calligraphy studies at the age of five, in his childhood home of Saga, Japan. Fujii's profound knowledge and mastery of the technique and history of calligraphy are the key to his freedom in creativity. Though he devotes a great deal of his time and efforts in continuing his teacher's legacy, Fujii is also passionate about expanding the art of calligraphy as a legitimate art form in the Western world. The goal of Meito Shodo-Kai Japanese Calligraphy Association is for as many of the world's people to know and understand properly the art of Japanese calligraphy. Learn more at japanesegarden.org.

Tewaza no Bi: Bamboo Art from the Collection of Peter Shinbach
Photo by Jonathan LeyJune 17 - July 16, 2017
at the Portland Japanese Garden

This summer, the Japanese Garden's new Tanabe Gallery will host an exhibition of Japanese Bamboo baskets on loan from long-time Garden member and local collector, Peter Shinbach. Shinbach became interested in Japanese bamboo art about twenty years ago and began collecting traditional bamboo baskets and more contemporary sculptural pieces about 15 years ago. The varied collection ranges from traditional baskets created primarily for flower arrangements to very contemporary sculptural pieces. Learn more at japanesegarden.org.

Behind the Shoji: Pacific Northwest Artist Showcase
June 17 - July 16, 2017
at the Portland Japanese Garden

Behind the Shoji, the Japanese Garden's annual show and sale of Japanese-inspired art and crafts, will feature some of the finest Japanese-inspired arts and crafts available, with an emphasis this year on the work of Northwest artists. From ceramics to sculpture, prints and paintings, wearables, furniture, paper products and more, this year's Behind the Shoji is a chance to highlight the incredible creations of Northwest artists. Learn more at japanesegarden.org.

Lan SuLan Su Chinese Garden
Silk Road
June 1- 30, 2017

Journey along the ancient trade route during the Lan Su Garden's month-long celebration of the Silk Road. Learn about nomadic life along the trade routes, watch a demonstration of silk painting and see a display of traditional silk textiles, and more! Activities include talks on silk textiles and the history of the Silk Road, silk embroidery art and a display of live silkworms. The silkworm display will be up all month so you can see their progress. Watch as they spin their cocoons and emerge as silk moths. Learn more at www.lansugarden.org.

Architectural Heritage Center
Parting Shots: Minor White's Images of Portland, 1938-1942
Open March 3–December 23, 2017
Meyer Memorial Trust Gallery at the Architectural Heritage Center

Minor White (1908 – 1976) was one of the most important American photographers of the 20th century. Originally from Minnesota, White’s professional career as a photographer began in Portland. Between 1938 – 1942 White was commissioned to document what amounted to the end of an era for some of the city's most important early architecture. Parting Shots will bring greater focus and attention to White's career in Portland, while also presenting through physical artifacts, the fine workmanship and materials employed by 19th-century architects and builders. Go to visitahc.org to learn more.

Past events:

Return & Remembrance
A Pilgrimage to the Portland Assembly Center
Honoring those Japanese Americans who were unjustly incarcerated by Executive Order 9066
Saturday, May 6, 2017, 2-4pm
at Portland Expo Center, Exhibit Hall A (2060 N. Marine Drive), free parking for this event
Free and open to the public

Seventy-five years ago, on May 6, 1942, Japantown in Portland was empty of Japanese Americans by military decree. Families were uprooted, property sold, and local businesses closed. Those of Japanese ancestry residing in the local area upended their lives and moved into the former animal stalls of the Pacific International Livestock and Exposition Center. Four months later they joined 120,000 other Japanese Americans in ten hastily erected concentration camps across the United States.

Please join us as we return to the site of the Portland Assembly Center to honor those who were unjustly forced out of their homes and businesses, driven away by wartime hysteria and racism. Listen to the stories of Japanese Americans who were there in 1942 and how they came together despite great hardship.

ONLC 535, gift of Alice Y. Sumida

The Tokio Sukiyaki House was located at 228 NW 4th Avenue, Portland. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the restaurant dropped "TOKIO" from its name in an effort to prove their American loyalty. Their efforts did not succeed, and the restaurant was shuttered when the owners and family members were incarcerated at the Portland Assembly Center. The restaurant never reopened. [ONLC 535, gift of Alice Y. Sumida]

Program will include the following: Emcee David Ono, news anchor for KABC-TV Channel 7 in Los Angeles; Keynote speaker Dale Minami, civil rights lawyer and lead attorney for Fred Korematsu's coram nobis legal team; performances by Unit Souzou and Minidoka Swing Band; exhibit Architecture of Internment: The Build Up to Wartime Incarceration, created by Graham Street Productions; George Nakata, former internee with stories of life as a young boy at the Portland Assembly Center; Chisao Hata'sTag Project; Weston Koyama, a fourth generation Japanese American and the first Minoru Yasui Fellow at the University of Oregon School of Law.

Race and Place: Old Town's Chinatown and Japantown Through Chinese American and Nikkei Eyes
A Series of Public Conversations: Part Two
Wednesday, May 3, 5:30-7:30pm
at the Oregon College of Oriental Medicine, KPC Community Room
(75 NW Couch Street, Portland)
Free and open to the public, light refreshments will be served

Chinese and Japanese American community elders will share their stories about growing up, living, and working in adjoining quarters called New Chinatown and Japantown between the 1920s-1960, in what is now known as Old Town Chinatown. The variety of perspectives offered by the elders will shed light on the ways that the neighborhood's Chinese American and Nikkei communities diverged and intersected with each other at different moments. The elders' dialogue will be followed by an open and lively discussion between panelists and audience. Race and Place, a series of public talks to explore Old Town's multiethnic past, is organized by the Portland Chinatown History Foundation in collaboration with the Oregon Nikkei Endowment. The series is sponsored by the Oregon College of Oriental Medicine. Visit www.portlandchinatown.org to learn more.

5th Annual Cherry Blossom Bazaar
A Rummage Sale of Japanese Treasures
Saturday & Sunday, March 11 & 12, 2017, 10am-4pm
127 NW 3rd Avenue, Portland

Shop 'til you drop! This is a unique sale of Japanese collectibles, artwork, dishware, furniture, and more. Items start as low as 25 cents! Something for every age, taste, and budget! All proceeds benefit Oregon Nikkei Endowment.

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Current Exhibit

Yellow Terror
February 5 — July 16, 2017

Yellow Terror

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