Fujimoto family diaries

Finding aid prepared by Reajinae Jenkins, 2016.
Special Collections & University Archives
The UCR Library
P.O. Box 5900
University of California
Riverside, California 92517-5900
Phone: 951-827-3233
Fax: 951-827-4673
Email: specialcollections@ucr.edu
URL: http://library.ucr.edu/libraries/special-collections-university-archives
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Fujimoto family diaries
Date (inclusive): 1913-1968
Date (bulk): 1942-1948
Collection Number: MS 096
Creators: Fujimoto, George, Jr.; Fujimoto, Toranosuke (George)
Extent: 4.58 Linear Feet (4 boxes)
Repository: Rivera Library. Special Collections Department.
Riverside, CA 92517-5900
Abstract: This collection consists of the diaries of Japanese-Americans Toranosuke (George) Fujimoto from 1913-1968, and the diaries of George Fujimoto Jr.from 1942-1948. The diaries notably cover their experiences during World War II, when the family was relocated from their Riverside, California home to an internment camp in Poston, Arizona.
Languages: The diaries kept by Toranosuke Fujimoto are in Japanese, while the diaries kept by George Fujimoto are in English.


This collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

Copyright of these records has been assigned to the University of California, Riverside Libraries, Special Collections & University Archives. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Director of Distinctive Collections.

Preferred Citation

[identification of item], [date if possible]. Fujimoto family diaries (MS 096). Special Collections & University Archives, University of California, Riverside.

Processing History

Processed by Reajinae Jenkins, 2016.
Processing of the Fujimoto family diaries was completed by undergraduate students from the University of California, Riverside as part of the Special Collections & University Archives Backlog Processing Project started in 2015. This project was funded by the UCR Library and administered by Jessica Geiser, Collections Management Librarian.

Biographical Note

Toranosuke Fujimoto was born July 11, 1882, and grew up in Kokawa, a town in the Wakayama Prefecture in Japan. In 1902 he emigrated to the United States, where he lived in Washington State and Orange County, California, before settling in Riverside, California. He also adopted the name “George,” as Americans had difficulty pronouncing his first name. In 1911, Fujimoto married his wife Suna and the couple became farmers in Riverside, raising chickens and growing strawberries and walnuts along with their six children. George Fujimoto, sometimes referred to as George Fujimoto Jr., was born on January 2, 1921, and was the couple’s first son and fourth child out of six.
In 1942 during World War II, Toranosuke was arrested by the FBI, along with many other Japanese American men in Riverside, and incarcerated until July 7th of 1942. A year after Toranosuke was arrested, George, his mother, and his siblings were all sent to the Poston Relocation Center, an internment camp located in Poston, Arizona. Toranosuke joined the family after he was released from incarceration, and he spent the following four years at Poston, becoming a block manager. He left the camp in June of 1946, as one of the last detainees to do so, and returned to his Riverside farm with his wife.
George resided at Poston until 1943, when he was granted permission to leave the camp along with his sister and her husband. They relocated to Des Moines, Iowa, where George worked at photography shop for eight months before being drafted in the U.S. Military. He was assigned to the Military Intelligence Service Language School, where he took intensive Japanese before serving as a translator in occupied Japan from November of 1945 until May of 1946. George eventually inherited the family farm, which he ran until the mid 1960's with his wife Masako and their children. After his retirement George and Masako moved to Ferndale, Washington, where he still resides.

Collection Scope and Contents

This collection consists of the diaries of Japanese-Americans Toranosuke (George) Fujimoto from 1913-1968, and the diaries of George Fujimoto Jr.from 1942-1948. The diaries notably cover their experiences during World War II, when the family was relocated from their Riverside, California home to an internment camp in Poston, Arizona. The collection also includes programs from the United Church of Christ in Riverside from the 1960s, which were used to wrap Toranosuke's diaries.

Collection Arrangement

This series is arranged into two series as follows:
  • Series 1. Toranosuke Fujimoto, 1913-1968
  • Series 2. George Fujimoto Jr., 1942-1948

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.


Fujimoto, George, Jr.
Fujimoto, Toranosuke (George)
Japanese Americans.
Japanese Americans Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945.
Poston Relocation Center (Ariz.)
Riverside (Calif.).

Genres and Forms of Materials


Collection Contents


Series 1. Toranosuke Fujimoto 1913-1968

Series Scope and Contents

This series consist of 38 diaries kept by Toranosuke "George" Fujimoto, as well as the church programs that they were originally wrapped in. The content in the diaries pertain to Fujimoto's daily life from 1913-1968, including the years that he spent at the Poston internment camp in Arizona.
Toranosuke's diaries from 1935-1939, and 1941-1946 have been digitized and are available online.

Series Arrangement

This series is arranged chronologically.
Box 1, Item 1


Box 1, Item 2


Box 1, Item 3


Box 1, Item 4


Box 1, Item 5


Box 1, Item 6


Box 1, Item 7


Box 1, Item 8


Box 1, Item 9


Box 1, Item 10


Box 1, Item 11


Box 1, Item 12


Box 1, Item 13


Box 1, Item 14


Box 1, Item 15


Box 2, Item 1


Box 2, Item 2


Box 2, Item 3


Box 2, Item 4


Box 2, Item 5


Box 2, Item 6


Box 2, Item 7


Box 2, Item 8


Box 2, Item 9


Box 2, Item 10


Box 2, Item 11


Box 2, Item 12


Box 2, Item 13


Box 2, Item 14


Box 2, Item 15


Box 3, Item 1


Box 3, Item 2


Box 3, Item 3


Box 3, Item 4


Box 3, Item 5


Box 3, Item 6


Box 3, Item 7


Box 3, Item 8


Box 4, folder 1

United Church of Christ of Riverside fliers circa 1960-1965


Series 2. George Fujimoto Jr. 1942-1948

Series Scope and Contents

This series consist of diaries written by George Fujimoto Jr. The diaries pertain to George's life after the FBI arrested his father and his life over the following six years, including his time at the Poston Relocation Camp and his military service.

Series Arrangement

This series is arranged chronologically.
Box 3, Item 9


Box 3, Item 10


Box 3, Item 11


Box 3, Item 12


Box 3, items 13-14


Box 3, Item 15


Box 3, Item 16