Fonds Mss 297 (A.08-12) - Takeo Kawata fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

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Takeo Kawata fonds

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Reference code

CA UMASC Mss 297 (A.08-12)

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  • 1988 (Creation)

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Physical description

1 scroll.

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Biographical history

Takeo Kawata was a Japanese-Canadian interned by the Canadian government in 1942 under the War Measures Act following the attack on Pearl Harbor during the Second World War.

Custodial history

The fonds was donated to University of Manitoba Archives Special Collections by Mesako Kawata in 2008.

Scope and content

The fonds consists of one government issued scroll conferring an apology to Japanese-Canadians for their internment during World War II. The scroll is a typed (11" x 17") sheet of paper.

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  • English

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There are no restrictions on this material.

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General note

Beginning in 1941, following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the Canadian government began relocating Japanese-Canadian males to labour camps where they could be monitored during war time. This relocation led to state profiteering from the property left behind or destroyed by the Canadian Navy. In 1942, under the War Measures Act, the Canadian government interned all “persons of Japanese racial origin.” Most of these camps were located in British Columbia. In the post-1945 era, Japanese-Canadians were deported from British Columbia to provinces east of the Canadian Rocky Mountains. In 1947, a Royal Commission was established to redress property compensation claims which the state recognized in the form of monetary payments, but not in civil rights terms. By 1949, Japanese-Canadians were allowed to settle wherever they chose, despite wide-spread racism towards them. A relatively underprivileged settlement narrative of Canadian history, the Japanese-Canadian struggle to reconcile with their lack of civil rights continued into the late-twentieth century. In 1988, President of the National Association of Japanese Canadians, Art Miki negotiated with Prime Minister Brian Mulroney’s Multiculturalism Minister, Gerry Weiner for $21,000 for each survivor of the relocation and an additional $12 million to a community fund, as well as a public apology by Prime Minister Mulroney.

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