Tamiko Nimura

Tamiko Nimura is a Sansei/Pinay writer, originally from Northern California and now living in the Pacific Northwest. Her writing has appeared or will appear in The San Francisco Chronicle, Kartika Review, The Seattle Star, Seattlest.com, the International Examiner (Seattle), and The Rafu Shimpo. She blogs at Kikugirl.net, and is working on a book project that responds to her father's unpublished manuscript about his Tule Lake incarceration during World War II. 

Updated July 2012 

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History, Unmoored: For Yasuko-san and Keiko-San

“Oh, this photo is evaporating. It needs to be copied right away,” says my friend Michael Sullivan.

We’re looking through a black and white photo album together, owner unknown. A mutual friend and antique collector has given us the album and asked us to look for the right place for it. Our friend bought it from a swap meet in Tacoma; the previous owner at the swap meet said that he found it at a Goodwill in Tacoma. (I would be happy to return the album to its rightful owners, if they read this piece.)

One of the photos ...

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Twenty Thousand Cranes And More: Stories Behind Washington State's Tsuru For Solidarity and Crystal City, Texas

Twenty thousand, and more.

As I type, twenty-five thousand origami cranes are being gathered in Austin, Texas. They’re going to be coming from approximately 150 locations all over: cranes have been shipped from California, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Missouri. Some are coming from overseas. And at least 12,000 are coming from Washington State, where I am writing.

In late March 2019, close to a hundred Japanese American activists will also be traveling from all over the United States. In conjunction with the Crystal City Pilgrimage committee, they will travel with the cranes and hang them at the Family ...

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“Tidying Up” My Family’s Camp Dresser

“If there is joy, it is a painful joy.”

—Karen Tei Yamashita, “Konmarimasu

I call it the camp dresser because it was made in camp. As far as we know, anyway. The camp dresser was in my Auntie Sadako’s house in a closet for years.

She and my uncle are downsizing, preparing for a move. Thanks to the help of some friends with a truck, the dresser’s now been moved from the San Francisco Bay Area to our house in Tacoma. What my auntie knows about it is that it was made in camp, but she doesn’t ...

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Drumming for History: The Annual Minidoka Pilgrimage Day of Remembrance Taiko Fundraiser

Around the country, Japanese American Days of Remembrance are commemorated with keynote speakers, with candle lighting, with marches, and even (this year) with bystander training for allies with Densho.

At Seattle University, thanks to the efforts of a few Seattle-based volunteers, an auditorium resonates each year to the sounds of taiko drumming. Proceeds of the concert go towards scholarships for the Minidoka Pilgrimage. Several taiko groups, including RTG (Regional Taiko Group), Seattle Kokon Taiko, and Seattle University’s youth group Hidaka Taiko, participate regularly. Other community groups use booths and feature exhibits to help attendees learn about the history of ...

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A Seasonal Guide to Seattle/Tacoma Area Japanese American Events

Happy New Year, everyone! 2018 marked a significant milestone for me—it’s been 20 years since I moved to Washington State from my home state of California. I wasn’t sure where to look for communities or events when I moved up here, and I felt pretty lonely for a while. I have come to learn about the many festivals and events that happen each year in the Seattle/Tacoma area. So I have created this guide for anyone who is moving here from out of state, or is interested in visiting the area during special events. Please feel ...

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