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
Yosegaki Hinomaru:
Souvenir, Heirloom or Art?
Opens to the public July 25, 2014

Every day across America, from deep within our family closets and attics, we discover artifacts from World War II, such as small Japanese flags inscribed with family names. What is this? Who made it and why? How did they get to America? This exhibition explores a time seventy years ago when families sent their sons off to war carrying personal items, and neither the son nor the property returned.

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

Resources & Services
Check out our Resources page to learn more about the 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. Also visit the JROC calendar for more Portland-area events from the Japan-Related Organizations Coordinating Group:

Never Give Up: An Evening of Art and Dialogue
Presented by MediaRites' Theatre Diaspora Outreach Project
Wednesday, July 29, 6pm
at the Jade/APANO Multicultural Space
8114 SE Division St, Portland
Free and open to the public

Portland actors will read excerpts from Citizen Min, a play about Oregonian civil rights activist Minoru Yasui who is most famous for his protest of the curfew imposed on Japanese Americans in Portland during WWII. Citizen Min is written by Holly Yasuiand directed by Chisao Hata. Following the performance will be a dialogue with community leaders, who will discuss Minoru Yasui's impact on civil rights, immigration, and national security policies—then and now. Free admission, donations welcome. Go to theatrediaspora.org for more information.

Japanese Garden
HakkodoArt in the Garden: Kizuna, The Rebirth of Mashiko Ceramics
June 6 - July 5, 2015

Kizuna is a phrase often repeated in Japan since the devastating earthquake and tsunami of 2011. Loosely translated as "the bonds between people," it says that we are all part of one family and need each other's help in order to survive both physically and emotionally. After the earthquake, everyone had to pull together to help each other get back on their feet. Nowhere was this more evident than in the remote pottery town of Mashiko, where potters' studios, kilns, and priceless works were destroyed. Since then, Mashiko potters have pulled together to rebuild their damaged kilns and regain the confidence to carry on their traditions. At the heart of the exhibition is the work of 11 contemporary potters from Mashiko. More information at japanesegarden.com.

Japanese Cultural Festival
August 8, 10am-4pm
Gresham Main City Park
Main & Powell, Gresham

Grand re-opening of the Gresham Japanese Garden - Tsuru Island! Featuring informative guided tours of Tsuru Island, bonsai, ikebana, taiko, tea ceremony, and more. Go to www.greshamsistercity.org/skosh for more information.

Lan Su Chinese Garden
Suzhou Summer: Art in the Garden
July 1 – August 31, 2015

July and August at Lan Su Chinese Garden is Suzhou Summer: Art in the Garden, where visitors can enjoy a series of demonstrations and activities in the traditional arts of calligraphy, brush painting, seal carving and music. Learn more at lansugarden.org.

AHCArchitectural Heritage Center
Strength, Utility, and Beauty: Architectural Metal in the Gilded Age
On display through August 2015

In Portland, the use of metal as a building material dates to the Victorian era, with the construction of new commercial and institutional buildings. Using examples from the Bosco-Milligan Foundation's collection of nearly 2,000 metal artifacts, this exhibit tells the story of the variety of metals found in late 19th - early 20th century Portland architecture. Guest curator Morgen Young of Alder, LLC explores the use of these metals, highlighting local producers. Most artifacts on display have never before been showcased publicly. Learn more at www.visitahc.org.

Oregon History Museum
World War II: A World at War, A State Transformed
June 26 – December 7, 2015

In this exhibition, artifacts and manuscripts from the Mark Family Collection illustrate this massive conflict, from the battlefields in North Africa to the home fronts in America. The exhibit will also focus on Oregon, a state transformed during the mid-twentieth century. Items drawn from the Oregon Historical Society's archives will tell the stories that dramatically changed Oregon, including the operation of the Kaiser shipyards and the experience of Japanese Americans. Learn more at www.ohs.org.

A Community on the Move
February 1 – June 28, 2015

A Community on the MoveThis original exhibition, created by the Oregon Black Pioneers, explores how the WWII shipyards, migration from the South, the Vanport flood, and urban renewal projects impacted Portland's black families and businesses. Drawing on personal photographs, historic artifacts, and hands-on experiences, A Community on the Move illuminates Portland's vibrant black community of the 1940s and early 1950s, which thrived despite a larger cultural and legal context of discrimination and displacement. As present-day gentrification in Portland impacts historically black neighborhoods, the importance of acknowledging and understanding this little-known history is critical to our collective future. With this in mind, A Community on the Move has been designed so that visitors can connect and compare past conditions to our modern realities. Learn more at www.ohs.org.

The Art of War: Propaganda Posters of World Wars I and II
February 28 – December 7, 2015

Guns, bombs, planes, tanks, ships, and submarines were the major weapons of World Wars I and II, but the persuasive powers of words and images were critically important in gaining and galvanizing the support of the American public. During both of the World Wars, the United States Government ran aggressive public relations campaigns; these propaganda posters, from the Mark Family Collection, are a sampling of poster art from World Wars I and II. Learn more at ohs.org.

Past events:

25th Anniversary of the Japanese American Historical Plaza
Celebratory Event and Cruise, with George Takei and Thomas Lauderdale
Sunday, August 2, 2015
4pm Public Event at the Plaza (NW Naito Parkway and Couch Street)
5:30pm Dinner Cruise on the Portland Spirit

George TakeiWe are proud to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Japanese American Historical Plaza and Bill of Rights Memorial! From 4:00-5:00pm on Sunday, August 2, Oregon Nikkei Endowment will honor all those who were instrumental in creating and maintaining the Japanese American Historical Plaza. The keynote speaker will be actor and activist George Takei, and music will be provided by the Minidoka Swing Band. This event is free and open to the public. Following the public event will be a celebratory cruise on the Portland Spirit. Boarding will begin at 5:30, and the cruise will take place from 6-8:30 pm. George Takei will be the special guest for this celebratory cruise, and music will be provided by Thomas Lauderdale of Pink Martini.

Please join us in celebrating 25 years of the Japanese American Historical Plaza and honoring all those who helped us reach this important milestone!

Plaza Cleanup
plaza cleanupSunday, July 26, 8am - noon
at the Japanese American Historical Plaza (NW Couch Street and Naito Parkway)

Volunteers are needed to help us clean the Japanese American Historical Plaza on Sunday, July 26, starting at 8am. Clean-up activities include pulling weeds, sweeping, and picking up litter. If possible, volunteers are encouraged to bring a broom, dust pan, rake, work gloves, water, flag markers, and any other tools and supplies that might be useful.

Annual Banquet
Benefit for Oregon Nikkei Endowment
Saturday, July 18, 2015
5pm Reception, 6pm Dinner
at the Hilton Portland & Executive Tower, 921 SW 6th Ave, Portland

We wish to thank our wonderful donors for their generous contributions to our Annual Banquet, honoring Jean Matsumoto and Yoshio & Sawako Oda, featuring Special Remarks by Governor Kate Brown and former Oregon Supreme Court Justice W. Michael Gillette, as well as a performance by Kurt Kuniyoshi, member of the Grateful Crane Ensemble and lead actor of Nihonmachi.

Our donors gave us wonderful items for our Silent Auction, Dessert Dash, and Wine Pull. We couldn't do it without you!

Airbnb Kira Iwasaki Noho's Hawaiian Café
Bamboo Grove Hawaiian Grille Rich Iwasaki Jere Okada
Beaverton Bakery Doug Katagiri Oregon College of Oriental Medicine
Columbia Sportswear/Trent Blair Lan Su Chinese Garden Oregon Culinary Institute
Cycle Portland Made in Oregon Portland Japanese Garden
Curves, Multnomah Mario's/Raynette Yoshida Portland Roasting
Sean Egusa Connie Masuoka Salishan Spa and Golf Resort
Lynn Grannan Meeka Sushi Restaurant Sapporo USA, Inc.
Betty Jean Harry Minidoka Swing Band SHO Authentic Japanese Cuisine
Ichidai Restaurant Darren Nakata Taipei Noodle Haus
Iko No Kai/Loen Dozono Kaeti Namba Tanasacres Nursery
Iwasaki Brothers Greenhouse New Seasons, Lake Oswego Uwajimaya
  Cherie Yokota  

Sakura Sakura Programs
Celebrated local photographer Motoya Nakamura has created a body of work by making photographs and videos of sakura (cherry blossom trees) throughout one year at the Japanese American Historical Plaza and Bill of Rights Memorial in Portland's Tom McCall Waterfront Park.

Family Day – Saturday, May 9, 11am-3pm
Free and open to the public. Join us at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center to make your own Sakura Sakura picture!

Old Town/Chinatown Photo Scavenger Hunt with Motoya Nakamura
May 9, noon-1:30pm
Ages 8+ (with family supervision)
Free, RSVP required

As part of Family Day, join Motoya Nakamura for a family-friendly workshop at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center. With Motoya as your guide, and Sakura Sakura as your inspiration, families attending this free workshop will be provided disposable cameras and sent on a photo-taking scavenger hunt through the neighboring streets of Old Town/Chinatown! This event is co-sponsored by Portland Photographic Society and Regional Arts & Culture Council.

Artists' Talk – Saturday, June 6, 3pm
Motoya Nakamura and visiting University of San Francisco professor Brian Komei Dempster will showcase the power of poetry, writing, and visual art to express complex issues of identity and the legacy of Japanese Americans.

Book Event
Saturday, May 16, 1-5pm
Free and open to the public

Please join us at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center as Dr. Toshio Inahara unveils his new autobiography: A Nisei, Right Place, Right Time.golf

Calendar of Activities

JROC Calendar

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Current Exhibit

Yosegaki Hinomaru
July 25 - September 27, 2015

Yosegaki Hinomaru

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The Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center has a wealth of resources documenting Japanese American history and culture, housing original manuscripts, government documents and publications, as well as historical and contemporary artifacts and photographs.

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please call us at 503-224-1458.

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