Japanese American museum and programs, based in Portland, Oregon.Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center

Japanese American History Museum
A project of Oregon Nikkei Endowment

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

Exhibit 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

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For information on administrative hours please call us at
503-224-1458.

 

Museum Collections
 

The Frank C. Hirahara Collection

Frank C. Hirahara image

Frank C. Hirahara was an electrical engineer active in the Portland Nikkei community from 1948-54, and took pictures in his spare time as a member of the Portland Photographic Society and the Oregon Camera Club. This collection is currently featured in our exhibition, Capturing a Generation through the Eye of a Lens: The Photographs of Frank C. Hirahara, 1948-54. This image is of an odori dancer at Obon, an annual Japanese Buddhist festival.

Frank C. Hirahara Collection

This photo is from a Nikkei community picnic, although the date and location are unknown. We will continue adding annotations and posting more photos from the Frank C. Hirahara collection throughout the run of the exhibit.

To view more photos from the Frank C. Hirahara collection, please visit our Flickr page.


Where was this photo taken?

ONLC 2092

Donated by longtime volunteer Eisaku "Ace" Hiromura, this photo shows a large group of Japanese Americans next to a building, which we think may be the U.S. Custom House in NW Portland. Our guess is based on the bars on the windows and the brickwork, but we have very little information about this photo.

To view more photos from the Eisaku Hiromura collection, please visit our Flickr page.


Nikkei of the Hood River Valley

Takagi Family

The Nikkei community of Hood River was one of the largest and earliest established Japanese communities in the state of Oregon. Agriculture has been a significant part of the culture which is still carried on today by many families, but this history required integration, struggle and perseverance.

To view more photos of Nikkei of the Hood River Valley, please visit our Flickr page.


Portland's Japantown

Portland Sumo

We've posted more photos of Portland's Japanese community, including this photo of the Portland Sumo Club, circa 1930. Nihonmachi was a hub for Japanese businesses and many community activities.

To view more photos of Nihonmachi, please visit our Flickr page.
 


Pre-War Business and Commerce:
Tsuboi jewelry

Community Sports:
baseball

Nisei Veterans:
Nisei vets

Sahomi Tachibana:
Sahomi at Tule Lake

Holiday items:
holiday card

Life at Minidoka:
Hunt High Yearbook

Issei forms and cards:
Endo card

Camp art:
Minidoka woodblock print

Rose Festival:
1931 Nikkei Rose Court

Japanese American Citizens League, 1940:
JACL Convention Banquet

Can you identify these medals?
Nakadate WWII medals

What could this be?
Japanese typesetter

 


Help preserve Nikkei history

M. Inouye at the "Heart Mountain Story" Exhibit

The story of Japanese Americans is one that must be told and retold by each generation. Do you have old photos taken in the internment camps? Art, poetry, or writing created by the Issei?

The Legacy Center collects Nikkei artifacts and historical documents for our exhibits and presentations. Please help us preserve our past. Search through your old drawers and family albums. We would like to borrow them long enough to make copies. The original print will be returned to you, unless you wish to donate it for our collection. 

For each photo, please note:

  • All people in the picture
  • Place it was taken
  • Date taken
  • Circumstances surrounding the picture (if appropriate)

We greatly appreciate your help in this effort.

For more information or to donate an item to our collection, please contact the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center:

Phone: 503-224-1458
email

Current Exhibit

Capturing a Generation through the Eye of a Lens
February 1 June 15, 2014

Hirahara

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Collections & Research

Oregon Nikkei Endowment has a wealth of resources documenting Japanese American history and culture. Our collections are utilized by researchers, students, and anyone interested in history to further their understanding of the Japanese American experience. Advance request to research the collections at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center is required.

Permanent Collection

The Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center houses original manuscripts, government documents and publications, as well as historical and contemporary artifacts. Thousands of photographs are housed in our institutional archives and digital database. Oral histories are also in the archives and are available on both video and audio tapes.

Resource Library

The Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center maintains a library for on-site research. Reference staff and volunteers are available to assist with research. Advance notice to utilize the resource library is requested and recommended.

Friends of Oregon Nikkei Endowment
Your support will help to ensure that the history, art and culture of the Nikkei are preserved and shared with the community for generations to come.

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