Uprooted: Japanese American Farm Labor Camps during World War II

Narrative:  In December 2013, I responded to an RFP sent out by Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission to put together a short documentary from oral histories and archival films and images to be used in support of a traveling exhibit of photographer Russell Lee’s documentation of Japanese American  farm labor camps in the Northwestern United States.

Later, my collaborators and I recorded and edited together Dr. Mathias Uchiyama's story.  Dr. Mathias Uchiyama remembers his childhood experiences in World War II as a part of a Japanese American family living and working on farm labor camps in the Pacific Northwest. lllustrated by photographs of Mathias and his family taken by Farm Security Administration photographer Russell Lee, Mathias reflects on the power and importance of Lee's imagery.

Exhibition:  Four Rivers Cultural Center, Minidoka County Historical Society Museum, Twin Falls Center, Human Rights Education Institute, Yakima Valley Museum, Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center, Japanese American National Museum, Lane County Historical Museum, Friends Center, Moses Lake Museum and Art Center, Oregon State University Library. 

Funders:  Made in collaboration with Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission and supported by grants from the National Park Service (Japanese American Confinement Sites Preservation Program), the Idaho Humanities Council (a State-base Program of the National Endowment for the Humanities), and the Malheur County Cultural Trust.

 

View the films:  https://vimeo.com/showcase/6795103

© 2020 by Courtney Hermann

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