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Japanese American Museum of Oregon

Japanese American Museum of Oregon

KOIN 6, May 10, 2021

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A new museum in Old Town that opened earlier this month commemorates the history and traditions of Oregon’s Japanese American Citizens. 

Some of that history was tragic, but there were also some triumphs. 

The Japanese American Museum of Oregon is located in the heart of what used to be Portland’s Japantown, or Nihonmachi.

“It’s what my parents were striving for, and now I’ve kind of seen it to fruition, and I am just thrilled,” said Connie Masuoka, president of the Japanese American Museum of Oregon.

Executive Director Lynn Fuchigami-Parks said a lot of the interactive exhibits focus on a dark time in Portland’s history when thousands of Japanese Americans were forcibly sent to internment camps following the Pearl Harbor attack in 1941. 

In 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, authorizing “military areas” to send Americans of Japanese descent.