Peter Eisenstadt

Peter Eisenstadt is an affiliate professor of history at Clemson University, and the author and editor of many books, most recently the author of Against the Hounds of Hell: A Life of Howard Thurman (University of Virginia, 2021)

Updated June 2021

community en

Howard Thurman and Japanese Americans - Part 2

Read Part 1 >>

It was as co-pastor of the Fellowship Church that Howard Thurman made his greatest contribution to working with Japanese Americans. As mentioned previously, it was in 1944 that Thurman was invited to join a white minister, Alfred Fisk, as co-pastor of the new church, which was one of the first churches in the United States organized on an intentionally interracial and interreligious basis. The assignment was sufficiently noteworthy that, on his departure from Howard in May 1944, Thurman was fêted at a gala in which the guest speaker, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, wished him success in …

Read more

community en

Howard Thurman and Japanese Americans - Part 1

During the early 1940s, Howard Thurman, a noted orator and writer, was dean of chapel and professor of religion at Howard University, a historically Black university in Washington DC. He usually spent his summers on the road, traveling to conference centers, retreats, and churches.

Despite the wartime conditions, the summer of 1942 was no different. That July, his journeys took him as far west as California, where he attended a 10-day Race Relations institute at Whittier College. During that trip, he made it his business to visit an “Assembly Center” for Japanese-Americans, presumably at Santa Anita Park, the thoroughbred race …

Read more