Thomas Tameichi Sakakihara(榊原為一Sakakihara Tameichi, 1900–1989), referred to locally as Tommy Sakakihara in person and in print, was a Japanese American politician from Hawaii, interned due to his ancestry during World War II.
Hawaii is the 50th and most recent state to have joined the United States, having received statehood on August 21, 1959. Hawaii is the only U.S. state located in Oceania, the only U.S. state located outside North America, and the only one composed entirely of islands. It is the northernmost island group in Polynesia, occupying most of an archipelago in the central Pacific Ocean.
World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.
Sakakihara joined the Republican Party and first ran for political office in 1926.He was elected to the legislature of the Territory of Hawaii in 1932, and served continuously then on for several terms.
The Republican Party, also referred to as the GOP, is one of the two major political parties in the United States; the other is its historic rival, the Democratic Party.
The Territory of Hawaii or Hawaii Territory was an organized incorporated territory of the United States that existed from August 12, 1898, until August 21, 1959, when most of its territory, excluding Palmyra Island and the Stewart Islands, was admitted to the Union as the fiftieth U.S. state, the State of Hawaii. The Hawaii Admission Act specified that the State of Hawaii would not include the distant Palmyra Island, the Midway Islands, Kingman Reef, and Johnston Atoll, which includes Johnston Island and Sand Island, and the Act was silent regarding the Stewart Islands.
In 1941, Sakakihara was one of six Americans of Japanese ancestry serving in the territorial legislature. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, he was made a deputy sheriff of Hilo, but was later discharged from that position.The intersection of Sakakihara's ancestry and rise to prominence set him up for negative attention from the US Army's Hawaii sub-command. He had earlier been listed on the Plan of Initial Seizure of Orange Nationals drawn up by George S. Patton between 1935 and 1937, among 127 other Japanese American community leaders. Then on February 26, 1942, Sakakihara and roughly thirty other prominent Japanese "enemy aliens or suspected sympathisers" were arrested by the Army. He was held at the Honouliuli Internment Camp until 1943; his release was conditional on a signed pledge not to sue the U.S. government for damages related to the internment.
The Attack on Pearl Harbor was a surprise military strike by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service against the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii Territory, on the morning of December 7, 1941. The attack, also known as the Battle of Pearl Harbor, led to the United States' formal entry into World War II. The Japanese military leadership referred to the attack as the Hawaii Operation and Operation AI, and as Operation Z during its planning.
The United States Army (USA) is the land warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces. It is one of the seven uniformed services of the United States, and is designated as the Army of the United States in the United States Constitution. As the oldest and most senior branch of the U.S. military in order of precedence, the modern U.S. Army has its roots in the Continental Army, which was formed to fight the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783)—before the United States of America was established as a country. After the Revolutionary War, the Congress of the Confederation created the United States Army on 3 June 1784 to replace the disbanded Continental Army. The United States Army considers itself descended from the Continental Army, and dates its institutional inception from the origin of that armed force in 1775.
George Smith Patton Jr. was a General of the United States Army who commanded the U.S. Seventh Army in the Mediterranean theater of World War II, and the U.S. Third Army in France and Germany following the Allied invasion of Normandy in June 1944.
Unlike fellow legislator and Honouliuli internee Sanji Abe, Sakakihara returned to politics after the end of World War II; he and five other Japanese Americans were elected to the Hawaii territorial House of Representatives for 1947.He was re-elected in 1948, along with fellow Japanese Americans Takao Yamauchi and Joe Itagaki. He also served as one of the vice-presidents of the 1950 Hawaii State Constitutional Convention. He found a strong political base among small sugar-growers. Eventually, his long service and political support earned him a position as chairman of the legislature's Finance Committee. He was also instrumental in getting increased funding for the Hawaii Vocational College (later the Hilo branch of the University of Hawaii). However, he and other Asian American Republicans lost their legislative seats in the Hawaii Democratic Revolution of 1954; Sakakihara himself was accused in a full-page ad in the Hilo Tribune-Herald by the International Longshore and Warehouse Union of taking salary kickbacks from his legislative workers.
Sanji Abe was a pre-World War II politician in Hawaii. He was the first Japanese American elected to the Senate of the Territory of Hawaii.
The Hawaii Democratic Revolution of 1954 was a nonviolent revolution that took place in the Hawaiian Archipelago consisting of general strikes, protests, and other acts of civil disobedience. The Revolution culminated in the territorial elections of 1954 where the long reign of the Hawaii Republican Party in the legislature came to an abrupt end, as they were voted out of the office to be replaced by members of the Democratic Party of Hawaii. The strikes by the Isles' labor workers demanded similar pay and benefits to their Mainland counterparts. The strikes also crippled the power of the sugarcane plantations and the Big Five Oligopoly over their workers.
Sakakihara was born on July 17, 1900 in Hilo, Hawaii to parents Shinzo and Hisa (née Hagihara).He gained familiarity with the law by working in the office of a local lawyer. His law career culminated in 14 years of service as District Judge for the Big Island of Hawaii. On April 15, 1933, he married Aileen Sadako Arizumi, with whom he had two children. Of small stature and build, he affected a dapper image, walking with a cane he admitted he did not actually need. His friends described him as aggressive and feisty. He was said to be fond of Black & White whisky, and served it during his frequent parties at the Young Hotel.
Black & White is a blended Scotch whisky. It was originally produced by the London-based James Buchanan & Co Ltd founded by James Buchanan. Originally known as House of Commons, its nickname, referring to the black and white labelling, was eventually adopted as the official brand instead. The brand's motif was conceived by James Buchanan himself during the 1890s.
The Alexander Young Building was a building in Honolulu, Hawaii built during 1900-1903 by Alexander Young (1833–1910), a Honolulu mechanical engineer and businessman from Scotland.
As late as 1970, Sakakihara was listed as a field representative for the office of Senator Hiram Fong.He did not speak out publicly about his internment until February 1976, when the Honolulu Star-Bulletin interviewed a number of former Honouliuli internees for a front-page story about President Gerald Ford's rescindment of Executive Order 9066. He died on February 22, 1989.
The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D.C.
Hiram Leong Fong, born Yau Leong Fong, was an American businessman and politician from Hawaii. The son of illiterate Cantonese immigrants, he overcame poverty to become the first Asian-American United States Senator, serving from 1959 to 1977. In 1964, Fong became the first Asian-American to run for his party's nomination for President of the United States. To date, he is the only Republican to ever hold a Senate seat from Hawaii and was the only Asian-American to seek the presidential nomination of the Republican Party until Bobby Jindal in the 2016 primaries.
The Honolulu Star-Bulletin was a daily newspaper based in Honolulu, Hawaii, United States. At the time publication ceased on June 6, 2010, it was the second largest daily newspaper in the state of Hawaiʻi. The Honolulu Star-Bulletin, along with a sister publication called MidWeek, was owned by Black Press of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada and administered by a council of local Hawaii investors. The daily merged with the Advertiser on June 7, 2010, to form the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, after Black Press's attempts to find a buyer fell through.
Daniel Ken Inouye was an American politician who served as a United States Senator from Hawaii from 1963 until his death in 2012. A member of the Democratic Party, he was President pro tempore of the United States Senate from 2010 until his death, making him the highest-ranking Asian-American politician in U.S. history. Inouye also chaired various Senate Committees, including those on Intelligence, Commerce and Appropriations.
Stephen Kei Yamashiro was an American politician and lawyer who served as the former Mayor of Hawaii County from 1992 to 2000. Yamashiro served on the Hawaii County council from 1976 to 1990, including eleven years as the council's chairman. He then served as the Mayor of Hawaii for two consecutive, four-year terms from 1992 until 2000.
The Mayor of Hawaii is the chief executive officer of the County of Hawaii in the state of Hawaii. He or she has municipal jurisdiction over the Big Island of Hawaii. The current mayor is Harry Kim. The Mayor of Hawaii County is the successor of the Royal Governors of Hawaii Island of the Kingdom of Hawaii.
The Izumo Taishakyo Mission is a Shinto shrine located in downtown Honolulu, Hawaii. It is one of the few active Shinto shrines in the United States. The wooden A-frame structure was inspired by Shimane Prefecture's classical Japanese shrine Izumo Taisha. It was designed by architect Hego Fuchino and built by master carpenter Ichisaburo Takata.
Sand Island, formerly known as Quarantine Island, also known as Kush Island is a small island within the city of Honolulu, Hawaii, United States. The island lies at the entrance to Honolulu Harbor.
Joseph Kahoʻoluhi Nāwahī, also known by his full Hawaiian name Iosepa Kahoʻoluhi Nāwahīokalaniʻōpuʻu, was a Native Hawaiian nationalist leader, legislator, lawyer, newspaper publisher, and painter. Through his long political service during the monarchy and the important roles he played in the resistance and opposition to its overthrow, Nāwahī is regarded as an influential Hawaiian patriot.
Peter Aquino Aduja was the first Filipino American elected to public office in the United States. He was elected as a representative in the Hawaii Legislature in 1954.
Japanese American history is the history of Japanese Americans or the history of ethnic Japanese in the United States. People from Japan began immigrating to the U.S. in significant numbers following the political, cultural, and social changes stemming from the 1868 Meiji Restoration. Japanese immigration to the Americas started with immigration to Hawaii and Alaska in the first year of the Meiji period in 1868.
The U.S. Immigration Office in Honolulu, Hawaii was constructed in 1934 based on a design by C.W. Dickey and Herbert C. Cayton. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.
Kinoʻoleoliliha Pitman, also written as Kinoole-o-Liliha, was a high chiefess during the Kingdom of Hawaii. She was known as Mrs. Pitman after her marriage. In the Hawaiian language, kino 'ole means "thin" and liliha can mean "heartsick".
The Honouliuli Internment Camp, Hawaiʻi's largest and longest-operating internment camp, opened in 1943 and closed in 1946. Located near Waipahu on the island of Oʻahu, the site was designated Honouliuli National Monument by Presidential Proclamation on February 24, 2015 by President Barack Obama. The internment camp held 320 internees and also became the largest prisoner of war camp in Hawai‘i with nearly 4,000 individuals being held. Of the seventeen sites that were associated with the history of internment in Hawaiʻi during World War II, the camp was the only one built specifically for prolonged detention. As of 2015, the new national monument is without formal services and programs.
Hiroshi Honda (1910-1970) was an American painter who was born in Hilo, Hawaii to Japanese parents who had immigrated to Hawaii at the turn of the twentieth century. He was sent to Kumamoto at age 6 to study and help with the family business, and while there studied sumi-e ink painting. He was conscripted into the Japanese Air Force as a young man, and served for seven years before being wounded and discharged. He returned to Hilo in 1939 and took a job teaching at a local Japanese language school, occasionally doing commercial painting work on the side. In 1940, he met a Nisei woman, Sadako Hashida, and the couple married and moved to Honolulu soon after.
The Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy is one of six colleges within the public University of Hawai'i at Hilo. The school awards a four-year Doctor of Pharmacy degree (Pharm.D.) and is by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education.
Chris Toshiro Todd is an American politician and a Democratic member of the Hawaii House of Representatives since January 2017 representing District 2 (Hilo). Todd was appointed by Governor David Ige on January 5, 2017 to replace the late Clift Tsuji.
The Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii (JCCH) is a cultural center and history museum in Moiliili, Hawaii that focuses on the Japanese-American experience in Hawaii, especially internment.
Shunzo Sakamaki(July 15, 1906-July 19, 1973) was a Japanese studies professor at the University of Hawaii. Sakamaki Hall, where the History department at the University of Hawaii is housed, was built after his death and named in his honor.
Jiro Okabe was a member of the Japanese House of Representatives. He was a member of the Rikken Seiyūkai, the Chūseikai, and the Kenseikai.
Kumaji Furuya (古屋熊次)(February 22, 1899-November 4, 1977) was a Japanese businessman who worked in Hawaii. He started the Fuji Furniture store in Aala, and created Hawaii's first Japanese-language radio program. His penname was Suikei (翠溪).