The Legacy and Impact of Japanese Immigration into Texas
The Japanese Flag
Reasons Why the Japanese Left
Reasons Why the Japanese Came to Texas
People Who Have Made an Impact on Japanese Immigration
Seito Saibara was a lawyer, a party politician, and the president of a Japanese university in Kyoto. He moved to the United States in search of an education in Hartford, Connecticut. However, in 1920, he moved to start rice farming in Texas. He bought land in Webster, near Houston, to start a prosperous rice colony that attracted many others.
Kichimatsu Kichi, an individual who was also well off in Japan after attending an university in Tokyo came to Texas to start his own rice colony along the coast. With the work of his family, the colony, located in Terry rose to become one of the most successful in Texas, kick starting an opportunity for farmers alike.
Son of Kichimatsu Kishi, Taro came to Texas with his mom to join his father's rice colony at the age of four. After growing up in the United States, he became well assimilated into the American culture, ultimately resulting in his years at Texas A&M where he played as halfback for the football team.
Isamu Taniguchi, born in Osaka Japan in 1902 moved to California thirteen years later. However, after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Isamu was sent to an internment camp in Crystal City, Texas based on the belief that all the Japanese in America were spies of the enemy. In 1945 he was released resulting in his prosperous farming years thereafter. Once Isamu retired, he designed and built Zilker Park in Austin for the enjoyment of Texan people.
Son of Isamu Taniguchi, Alan taught thousands of students as the dean of the School of Architecture at the University of Austin and as the director of Rice University's School of Architecture.
The founder of the rice colony in Webster, TX
The designer and builder of Zilker Park in Austin, TX
The son of Kichmatsu Kishi who played for Texas A&M as halfback
Traditions, Customs, and Festivities of the Japanese People
The Japanese are centered around two aspects that determine how they behave, harmony and respect. All Japanese people live together as one cohesive race with a great sense of camaraderie. They co-operate well with each other and have a liking for peace and calm. As important as harmony is to the Japanese culture, so is respect. Everyone in society has a certain age and status that determines how much respect they should receive. All elders are given the highest amount of honor and reverence when in the presence of younger people. Regarding manners, all Japanese people have certain etiquette when it comes to meeting other people or eating food and everything in between.
There are two major religions that the Japanese follow, Shinto and Buddhism. Shinto states that all living things in nature contain gods and is concerned with the spirituality of the world. Buddhism is based on Buddha's teachings and the essence of the human soul.
The Japanese are very passionate for their food and cooking. Their cuisine is majorly based upon rice, fish, and vegetables. Rice has existed in Japan for over 2000 years and is present in most dishes. This crop is given high value and respect since it is so labor intensive and crucial to their culture. Fish is popular in Japan due to the easy access of the ocean. There are multiple methods on how to prepare it such as tempura and many others creating a distinctive array of meals.
Shogatsu- Also known as the Japanese New Year, Shogatsu is the most commonly celebrated holiday in Japan. From January 1st through 3rd, all businesses are closed, allowing people to enjoy some free time with their family. They then gaze at the morning sunrise, representing the fortune to come in the new year and often visit shrines to worship for a prosperous year.
Coming of Age Day- This holiday celebrates the passage of one young person into adulthood. Three day are set aside for this festival, filled with rituals, speeches and gifts as women and men wear traditional dresses called kimono.
Hina Matsuri- On the third of March, families put on an elaborate display of dolls to wish their daughters a happy life. The dolls are meant to ward off evil spirits and ensure the livelihood of girls across the nation.
Valentine's Day- Valentine's Day is celebrated differently in Japan, as the females are the ones who often distribute the chocolates. Women give 'giri choco' or obligatory chocolate to male co-workers, while men give chocolates a month later on White Day.
Japanese Tea Ceremony- This ritual is basically the serving and preparing of Japanese green tea to the host's guests. The tea is prepared with extreme caution, care and heart since the importance of the ceremony lies in preparation. Even utensil placement is considered as guests enjoy their tea.
Cherry Blossom Festivals- These celebrations are held throughout the year, especially in the spring to welcome the new season. People gather around cherry blossom trees to celebrate a time of relaxing, peace and tranquility. Picnics are often held as people gaze at the wonderful flowers.
A dish made of raw seafood and rice wrapped in seaweed
Beautiful cherry blossoms, magnificent mountains and traditional architecture
The founder of Buddhism, one of the most practiced religions in Japan
Did You Know?
Fun Facts and Trivia on Japanese Immigration and Culture
- The first generation of Japanese colonists were called the issei, the second, the nisei and the third the sansei.
- The world's largest wholesale fish and seafood market, the Ksukiji fish market, is located in Japan.
- Rice was once used as currency in Japan.
- The first novel called the Tale of Genji was written by a Japanese author.
- 70% of Japan is covered with mountains along with 200 volcanoes.
Impact of Japanese Texans
The Effect of Japanese Immigration onto Texan Soil and Evidence of Their Contribution
Impact of Texas Immigration
What Immigration Has Done for Texas
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