I was born in Mission City, BC in 1927 on my father’s farm on Mt. Maryanne where the Westminster Abbey presently stands. My earliest memories are of Santa’s visits, sleigh rides, watching a black bear approach as we hid in a shed, mochitsuki, potato roasts on our cliff, singing and watching the moon come up over Mt. Baker, the summer influx of friends who came from Vancouver to pick berries in the summer, and most of all, our parents love.
IN 1950, A YOUNG NISEI NAMED Mickey Nakashima returned to the coast from Montreal. She became involved in the Vancouver community and the JCCA and in 1958 came up with the idea of starting a newsletter for members. She named the new publication The Bulletin, after the Montreal Bulletin, and the rest, as they say, is history.
As we celebrate the Centenary and rejoice in the fact that we are an integral part of this wonderful province which has rewarded our endeavours abundantly for half a century, let us be mindful that while this citizenship has granted us privileges, it has increased our civic responsibility. Since the J.C.C.A. is the only nationally representative organization for Canadians of Japanese origins, it shoulders a tremendous responsibility.
With the opening of the Kaslo show on the 50th anniversary of the 1st Kaslo issue of The New Canadian in 1992, I was fortunate enough to spend time with Tommy and Frank and got hooked on the “Great Canadian Newspaper Story.”
So starting on Monday Dec. 15, the week after the Pearl Harbor attack, I joined the staff in Nihonmachi and learned how a real newspaper was put together from the boss Tommy Shoyama, as well as other staffers such as Yoshi Higashi—original editor Peter Shinobu Higashi’s younger brother—and Seiji Onizuka who was the sports editor.
When The New Canadian began publishing on Kaslo’s Front Street on November 30, 1942, it became the primary source of news for a community that had been exiled from their homes on the west coast.
The Bulletin/Geppo has undergone many changes in these 50 years, from a few type-written pages providing information on local Nikkei community events to one that looks at some of the more controversial issues in today’s global community.
The history of the flowering cherry trees in Vancouver, according to the Park Board, goes back to the early 1930’s when the Board started...