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The pre-war Japanese Canadians of Maple Ridge : landownership and the KEN tie Read, John Mark 1975

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THE PRE-WAR JAPANESE CANADIANS OF MAPLE RIDGE: LANDOWNERSHIP AND THE KEN TIE by JOHN MARK READ B.A., University of British Columbia, 1971 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in the Department of Geography We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA June, 1975 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by his representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. The University of British Columbia Vancouver, B.C. V6T 1W5 Date \VHAJ^ S--: J R i g . Abstract This paper is an examination of the ethnic clustering and landownership patterns of the pre-war Japanese Canadian berry farmers in the District of Maple Ridge, British Columbia. In this particular area the Japanese Canadian farmers clustered together in three dis-tinct areas and established Nokai or agricultural associations to look after their economic needs. These Nokai were both geographic centres and social centres as they were centrally located in the cluster and the Nokai building became the Japanese community's meeting place. These clusters of Japanese appear to be a product of Canadian racial prejudice and strong ethnic ties. In addition to being clustered together ethnically these Japanese Canadian farmers have a landownership pattern that displays a persistence of regional loyalty. Most of the Japanese Canadian farmers have tended to locate their farms near someone of the same prefectural origins. This geographic expression of Japanese regional loyalty in North America has never been noticed. The apparent per-sistence of this Ken-tie, as demonstrated in these farmer's landownership pattern, indicates that regional loyalty or Zen-consciousness is an important element in the set of values of the Japanese immigrant and his family. i TABLE OF CONTENTS Chapter Page I INTRODUCTION 1 II ETHNIC CLUSTERING PATTERN AND NOKAI CENTRES 6 III EARLY HISTORY OF JAPANESE IMMIGRATION TO CANADA 29 IV GROWTH OF RACIAL PREJUDICE IN BRITISH COLUMBIA 49 V ZEff-CONSCIOUSNESS 71 VI SUMMARY 82 BIBLIOGRAPHY A. PRIMARY SOURCES 85 B. SECONDARY SOURCES 88 i i i i i LIST OF TABLES Table Page 1 Numbers of Landowners from Each Prefecture 27 2 Distribution of Japanese in B.C., 1940 40 3 Chinese Immigration to Canada, 1902-1912 58 4 Chinese and Japanese in Canada and British Columbia, 1931 63 i v LIST OF MAPS Map Page 1 Maple Ridge and the Lower Mainland 3 2 Japanese Landowners in Maple Ridge, 1930 4 3 Japanese Landowners in Maple Ridge, 1940 . . . . . . . 5 4 Regions and Prefectures of Japan 32 V LIST OF FIGURES Fi gure Page 1 Age Pyramids of Chinese and Japanese in British Columbia (Census of 1931) 63 vi LIST OF PLATES Plate Page I Haney Nokai (taken 1947) 15 II Hammond Nokai (now Maple Ridge Eagles Hall, taken 1975) . 15 III Buddist Church (now Christian Reformed Church, taken 1975) 16 IV Ruskin Nokai (approx. 1931) 19 Acknowledgments I wish to thank Richard Copley, my advisor, for his encouragement and patience. Thanks are also due to Dr. A.H. Siemens for his helpful comments, Dennis Okada for his invaluable translation of some Japanese language material, Mr. Doug Oike for his time and excellent memory and William Driftwood for the mapwork. Special consideration is due my wife, Karen, without whom this thesis would not have been possible. vii THE PRE-WAR JAPANESE CANADIANS OF MAPLE RIDGE: LANDOWNERSHIP AND THE KEN TIE CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION The settlement of Japanese Canadian farmers in the Fraser Valley before World War II exhibited several kinds of geographical clustering patterns. On one level these farmers gathered on an ethnic basis where the criteria for grouping was their common Japanese ancestry. At this level the social and racial considerations played an important part in the formation of this type of cluster. Found within these ethnic clusters and operating on an ethnic, economic, and social scale was the Nokai with the Japanese community hall as the physical and symbolic centre. These Nokai were the foci or nodes of the different Japanese farming communities. In addition to this ethnic clustering pattern and found within it was a landownership pattern that reflected the farmer's home ken (prefecture) in Japan. This striking settlement pattern has not been described or even noticed in any of the available literature on the Japanese in Canada. This work is an attempt to describe and analyse these characteristics of pre-war Japanese-Canadian agriculture settlement in the Lower Fraser Valley. Almost one-half of all Japanese Canadian farmers operated in the District of Maple Ridge, where these clustering patterns were most 1 apparent. Maple Ridge is the study area of this thesis. Map #1 shows the location of the District of Maple Ridge in the Lower Fraser valley. The clustering patterns are cartographically described in Maps #2 and #3 which represent the extent of Japanese Canadian landownership in Maple Ridge in the years 1930 and 1940 respectively. Two hundred and one farm households are located on Map #2 while 246 are located in Map #3. This represents 95% of all Japanese-Canadian landowners in these years in Maple Ridge. There were also some Japanese Canadian tenant farmers in the district but there is no way to identify them all and locate them accurately. My information on landownership comes from the District of Maple Ridge Municipal Tax Rolls of 1931 and 1941. Information on pre-fectural origins of these landowners comes primarily from the Japanese Canadian Citizens' Directory of 1940 and also through personal interviews with a number of former residents of this area, mainly Mr. D. Oike of Burnaby, British Columbia. DISTRICT of MAPLE RIDGE Map #1 MAPLE RIDGE and the LOWER MAINLAND Scale 1 : 2 5 0 . 0 0 0 5 m i l e s CHAPTER II ETHNIC CLUSTERING PATTERN AND NOKAI CENTRES The theme of the ghetto or of ghettoization of immigrant and ethnic groups has been a common one in geographical and sociological literature. What we have in the case of the Japanese immigrant community in the Fraser Valley is the isolation or separation of an ethnic group in a rural setting. Of course this was not an unusual situation either, as there are many examples of religious groups clustered in farming communities in the rural landscape. But the Japanese rural clustering was not U t o p i a n nor in any way religiously motivated. Furthermore the Japanese farms were, in the most part, so small and tightly grouped that practically every farmer had a Japanese neighbour and the total geograph-ical area of the cluster was small enough to create a village-like environment not too different from a farming village in Japan. In traditional rural Japan the village or buraku was the central functioning unit of Japanese rural society. To find Japanese farmers in Canada working within a framework that established the idea of the village as the central operational unit is therefore not surprising. The Japanese village survived through organization and cooperation. This cooperation was not just at the neighbour to neighbour level but through a system that demanded total participation of all those within that village unit. The intensive rice cultivation of Japan required sophisti-cated and carefully regulated irrigation procedures for without careful 6 7 control and distribution of their water the village could not survive. This heritage of cooperative action acted as a cohesive force within the Canadian environment and therefore allowed the Japanese immigrant farmers to adapt as a group to the Canadian agricultural situation. The Japanese Canadian farmers did not stand alone but functioned in groups, groups that had fairly clear geographic boundaries and at the same time their own governing social organizations. By examining Map #2 (p. 4), which represents the distribution of over 95% of all Japanese Canadian landowners in the District of Maple Ridge in 1930, we can see that there are distinct grouping patterns or clusterings. The western portion of the District, or what was traditionally known as Port Hammond or Hammond, is one of these clusters. Here we have a group of approximately 35 farmer-owners of Japanese origin. In the central area of the District primarily to the north of Dewdney Trunk Road but also the south of this main artery as we move east, is another centre of Japanese landowners. This group is primarily in the area known as Port Haney or Haney and numbered about 100. In the southeast corner of the District we can find another cluster. While this is a much smaller grouping than either the Hammond or Haney areas, this group can be divided into two distinct clusters; Ruskin and Whonnock. This is fairly evident in the map of 1930 and by 1940 growth in the numbers of Japanese farmers was gradually turning the bi-centred grouping into one contiguous area of Japanese farmers. By turning to Map #3 (p. 5), which represents the same area of Maple Ridge in 1940, we can see that the grouping into three dis-tinct sub-areas is sti l l very evident. The only real difference is in 8 numbers, with most growth in the Haney and Whonnock-Ruskin areas. In 1940 Hammond had approximately 48 farmers while Haney had approximately 130 farmers and Whonnock-Ruskin had 65 farmers. It is clearly evident that these areas demonstrate a degree of cohesiveness and continuity that cannot be explained through random group-ing. It is not unusual to expect that Japanese immigrant farmers would tend to group together for mutual aid and this is perhaps to be expected. By the formation of these groups we have the development of village-like communities and these communities began to function independently of each other. This development of independence in a feurafeu-like situation re-sulted in the formation of a formal institution that acted as a focus for organization and cooperation among these Japanese Canadian farmers. This organization was known as the Nokai which literally means "agricultural society." Unlike many clubs formed by ethnic groups today the Nokai played more than a social role. It was the heart of the community and it was through the Nokai and its ancillary organizations that the Japanese Can-adian agricultural communities in the Fraser Valley governed themselves as well as provided social services. What initially would begin as a farmers' organization would soon-result in much more, for it was this farmers' organization that would begin the construction of the Nokai hall or what would become known as the Japanese Community Hall or Japanese Community Centre. Its prime importance was the meeting place of the Nokai but it would soon become the central focus of the entire Japanese Community and the meeting place of an assortment of different Japanese clubs and organizations. 9 The Nokai Hall was the community's home ground, isolated from the English-speaking community and a secure Japanese place in what were con-sidered relatively unfriendly surroundings. Here the farmers could gather to discuss farm problems, marketing and methods of farm improve-ment. On certain occasions guests would give lectures on farming tech-niques such as the two-month course given in 1927 by Dr. Wakabayashi, of Tacoma, who taught the Japanese farmers some modern scientific techniques and procedures for better farming. The important aspect was that the course was given in Japanese, which meant that the farmers would really understand what was being explained. As these Japanese farming communities functioned almost totally<in the Japanese language, the farmer had little need of English and gained little expertise in working with the language. This particular course of Dr. Wakabayashi's proved to be so successful that it was to be repeated the following year (Vancouver Province 27/6/29: 12). In addition to operating as an occupational centre the Nokai Hall also served as the language school for the community's children. Every-day when public school was over the Japanese children would go to the Nokai Hall and learn Japanese from one of the adults, or more often, from a Japanese teacher brought out from Japan by the community for that speci-fic purpose. Meeting six days a week, this school also operated on Saturdays. The teaching of the Japanese language to the children was very important to the Japanese Canadian generally but even more so in the farm-ing communities as most of the immigrants spoke little English and it was important that their children be able to read and write as well as speak their parents' native tongue. 10 The Nokai Hall also offered a place for the young men and boys to learn and practice traditional Japanese sports such as judo and kendo or to join with their parents to watch demonstrations of these sports put on by experts from Vancouver and in some instances even Japan. It was also the meeting place of the Fujinkai or Women's Club. This group, as well as providing a social outlet for the Japanese Community's women, gave instruction in the traditional feminine Japanese arts such as ikebana and the tea ceremony in addition to basic instruction in ordinary home-maker's skills such as sewing. In addition to these functions the Nokai Halls served as the social focal point for community celebrations and festivals. The travel-ling clergy, both Buddhist and Christian, would often use these halls to perform services when they passed through the area. In the Haney-Hammond area a Buddhist Church had been built; however, in other areas without a church building the Nokai Hall could be used. The Nokai, while not unique as a community organization, was unusual in that every Japanese family belonged. These were organizations of all the people. While some farmers may have assumed positions of greater importance and others may not have been as closely associated to the Nokai, it sti l l represented all the Japanese in the area. By acting as the central focus of the community, it kept the Japanese farmers some-what inward-looking and allowed the community to exist quite independently of the larger white communities of which they were a part. While inter-action between the two groups took place there were stil l the prejudices of the white community that prevented the Japanese from becoming completely integrated. 11 Under such circumstances the Nokai offered protection to the immigrant farmer. Here he could meet and associate with people whose native language, values, and lifestyle more closely resembled his own. It also offered the same security to all the Japanese farmers, whether they had only recently become established or had been in the area a decade or two. It created a situation where the Japanese farmer and his family was much less dependent upon the white community. This allowed him to operate to a very large extent in his native tongue and thereby solved one major problem of the Japanese immigrant—the difficult task of learning English. In the early days of the Japanese settlement the Nokai also pro-vided people who understood Canadian ways. While many Issei farmers understood little English there would always be one or two members whose English would be good enough to conduct business or translate for legal work, a service most essential to the community's survival. In later years as the Japanese became more settled it was the children who became the interpreters. While they had learned Japanese at the Language school in the Nokai they had also attended the public schools and were conversant in English. The young people would often work with court officials and doctors to help explain problems and difficulties experienced by their parents or other members of the community (Imakire, personal communication). Another service provided by the organizations found within the Nokai was welfare. During the early part of this century the state pro-vided little in the way of welfare and an immigrant community could expect even less because of prejudice against them. When the Japanese farmers 12 came upon difficult times caused by crop failure or some unforeseen expense or a farmer's death left his family in need, the community, through the Nokai organization saw to it that the family was provided with whatever was necessary to help them through the difficult period (Saito, personal communication). The Japanese community was proud, and to have a Japanese family go unprovided for was unthinkable. This support of those in need was common among all Japanese communities in British Columbia and was simply an extension of the buraku functions into the Canadian environment. In later years an organization called the Japanese Canadian Citizens League was formed. This was an exclusively Nisei or Second Generation group. It had been patterned after the Japanese American Citizens Association and acted as a mediator and spokesman for the Japanese Canadians. Each community throughout the province sent representatives to the organization's meetings. These representatives were chosen at meetings of Nisei and then reported back to their members. In Maple Ridge the two Japanese communities, Hammond and Haney met and worked together at the Haney Nokai Hall as it was the larger and more central of the two, while Whonnock and Ruskin elected their own representatives. The group's main purpose was to improve relations between the whites and Japanese as well as aiding the Issei (first generation) in dealing with the white community. This group also actively sought the vote for Canadians of Japanese origin. In 1936 they sent a prominent Vancouver lawyer, T.G. Norris, to Ottawa to speak on their behalf (Norris, 13 1936). The bid was unsuccessful but the organization continued to work for better relations between the two communities. The Nokai and its various organizations represented every aspect of local Japanese community. The size and spectrum of services offered would, to a degree, vary with the size of the community it served. It is interesting to note that each community of Japanese farmers had their own. Nokai Hall and that within the District of Maple Ridge there were four. These four Nokai were fairly separate and most often operated as distinct and separate community centres. The two main centres of Hammond and Haney operated quite separately while the two other centres, Whonnock and Ruskin shared a number of services. One of the shared services was the language training. The teacher would teach at one centre on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and at the other on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This schedule would be reversed on the following week and on Saturdays all the children would have their classes at the larger Whonnock Nokai Hall. A teacher at the public school in Whonnock told the writer that the Japanese language teacher was a very strict man and that if she kept any Japanese children in after school he would send one of the Japanese children up to the school to ask her to let the student out because the Japanese school was waiting (Byrnes, personal communication). The Nokai was the first institution in these Japanese centres. Establishment of the Nokai organization soon followed the first settle-ment of the Japanese farmers and once this framework had been formed the Nokai organization then began the construction of their Nokai Hall. The first Japanese farmers had come to this area of Hammond and Haney during 14 the period from 1904-1910 and by 1913 there was an established Haney Nokai Hall. This group had purchased the old Lillooet School at the corner of what is now 232nd Street and Dewdney Trunk Road. This old school served the Japanese community until 1926 when a new hall was built on the same grounds and the old school building was then used as a church and Sunday school. To build the new hall two carpenters were hired and the rest of the work was done by volunteer labour {Maple Ridge, a History 1972:19). Later in 1936, a judo hall was added to the growing centre. The Haney Nokai was by far the largest and most important of the Nokai on the north side of the Fraser. Its membership was more than 100 families (Yamaga, 1963) and while principally used for the Japanese community of Haney it was also used by other groups in the community at large. Alexander Robinson School used the Haney Nokai. building to stage their Christmas Concerts {Maple Ridge, a History 1972:19) (see Plate I, Haney Nokai, 1947). Similarly in Hammond, the Japanese there had a Nokai organization by 1916 and a Nokai building to the west of 5th Avenue on Dewdney Trunk Road two years later. Like the group in Haney, this building was primarily built with volunteer labour. Later in 1930, this building burned down and a new hall was erected at what is now 206th Street and Dewdney Trunk Road in 1932. This building now serves as the Maple Ridge Eagles Hall (see Plate II, Hammond Nokai Hall, now the Maple Ridge Eagles Hall, 1975). Later, on the site of the first Hammond Nokai, a Buddhist Church was built (see Plate III, Buddhist Church, now Christian Reformed Church, 1975). Plate I. Haney Nokai (taken 1947) (Courtesy Provincial Archives, Victoria, B.C.) Plate III. Buddist Church (now Christian Reformed Church taken 1975). 17 The Hammond Nokai numbered about fifty families in the late 1930's. Like the Nokai's of Haney, Whonnock and Ruskin, the Hammond Nokai operated a language school. It is perhaps worth observing that the Hammond and Haney Nokai halls were less than three miles apart and served completely different communities. A good example of the distinctiveness of the various Japanese communities is demonstrated by the recollections of a Nisei informant who grew up in the Haney-Hammond area. As a young boy his family had lived in the Hammond area and his family later purchased a farm in the Haney area. For a number of years his father continued to belong to the Hammond Nokai even though they had moved into the Haney area. However, he eventually switched and joined the Haney Nokai. In remembering the area he was very familiar with both Haney and Hammond and could roughly place the farms of almost all the Japanese in these two communities on a map. However, as we moved east on the map, his memory became much less clear and he could not locate any of the Japanese farms of Whonnock and Ruskin (D. Oike, personal communication). Another Nisei informant who lived rather east but whose family had belonged to the Haney Nokai was a little more familiar with the Japanese community in Whonnock but he too was unable to accurately locate the farms of those who came from the neighbouring Nokai. Similarly the first informant was also unable to locate any of the families who lived in Pitt Meadows, only a few miles to the west of Hammond. The other two Nokai Halls in Maple Ridge, Whonnock and Ruskin, were built much later than the Hammond and Haney Halls. This general area IS in the southeast part of the District was settled by Japanese farmers later and in fewer numbers than the Hammond and Haney area. In Whonnock, Mr. Natsuhara, a very successful grower,, gave a small parcel of land from his farm on Whonnock Road to the Nokai organization and in 1930 the Nokai Hall was built. The Nokai Hall in Ruskin was also built around 1931 (see Plate IV). An interesting addition is the rising sun design on the gable ends of the building. Whonnock and Ruskin were communities that emerged much later than the Haney and Hammond centres and because of this later growth and rela-tive isolation they operated quite independently. The distance between Whonnock and Ruskin and the Haney Nokai Hall was about ten miles and during the late thirties not everyone had vehicles which made it virtually impossible for the development of close ties between the two areas. We have already noticed that the communities of Hammond and Haney., separated by about only three miles., developed separate Nokai so it is not unusual to expect communities ten miles away to also organize their own institutions. The other Japanese farming communities on the North side of the Fraser were Mission and Pitt Meadows. The Pitt Meadows Community was quite small and at its peak numbered about 35 families. Like the commun-ities in Maple Ridge, the Pitt Meadows community had its own Nokai Hall and functioned much the same. The Mission community was quite large with some 70 families belonging to the Nokai: The Mission Japanese were a predominantly Buddhist group and this group had its own church building. The Nokai Hall served as the meeting place of the small Japanese United Church. This group was the most active Christian group of the communities 19 Plate IV. Ruskin Nokai (approx. 1931) (Courtesy Provincial Archives, Victoria, B.C.) 20 on the north side and only World War II prevented the Mission Japanese from occupying their newly constructed church. The Mission Japanese were much more removed from the Japanese Communities of Maple Ridge. While there was a certain degree of inter-action between the communities in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows, the Mission community was much more self-contained. Separated by some twenty miles from the Haney-Hammond area the Mission community was quite independent. While most of the Japanese in Maple Ridge belonged to the Maple Ridge Coop., an organization founded by Y. Yamaga in 1927, the Japanese in Mission did most of their marketing through the Pacific Coop., a non-Japanese organization centred in Mission. In looking at the six Japanese communities on the north side of the Fraser River we can see from the Nokai alone that there seems to have been a desire to have the communities remain in smaller village-like units. The only group that seems to' have operated together is the Whonnock-Ruskin group and by an examination of Map #3 (p. 5), the geo-graphic unity of this area can readily be seen. This tendency towards isolation is perhaps a reflection of the farming tradition carried over from Japan where the small village was the fundamental economic and social unit. It may also be a reflection of the effect of distance. The dis-tances between the communities, while not great by Canadian standards, were certainly not what the Japanese had been used to and this would certainly add to this isolation factor. It is also interesting to note that when the more prosperous farmers in the Maple Ridge area chose to expand their farms they bought land adjacent to their farms, or nearby, 21 whereas some of the Mission Japanese rather than move to the east or west looked south and operated farms on the south side of the Fraser River in Matsqui. The easy access across the railroad bridge at Mission made this the natural route of expansion. While the Nokai was the official vehicle of cooperation among the Japanese farmers of the communities of Maple Ridge it was not the only cooperative institution. Fundamentally the Nokai was an occupational-ethnic organization. Beside this, a prominant Japanese farmer, Y. Yamaga, established a farming cooperative that was primarily an economic, ethnic organization. In 1921 a cooperative had been organized by Mr. Gilland and Mr. Edgett, but many Japanese farmers felt that they were not being treated fairly and in 1927 organized their own: The Maple Ridge Berry Growers Cooperative Exchange. While this cooperative was not ex-clusively Japanese it was for the most part a Japanese Canadian organiza-tion. Through this cooperative the Japanese Canadian farmers shipped their berries to Eastern markets in Toronto and Montreal and generally could get their crops out before berries grown in the East were ready. In addition to warehousing facilities the cooperative installed an SG^  pro-cessing plant where berries could be processed before shipment to the British Isles and Europe [Maple Ridge, a History, 1972:18) (Mitsui, 1964: 50). Through the establishment of the Nokai and the Cooperative the Japanese Canadian farmers of Maple Ridge ensured themselves of a great deal of independence. By exercising control over key functions of their community they felt that they would be much less affected by the larger 22 white community. These developments most certainly led to a situation existing in Maple Ridge in which a significant minority of the popula-tion was operating independently of the larger majority. The issue of racial prejudice and white attitudes toward the Japanese is a complex one and in a later chapter a general examination of this issue, with reference to British Columbia, will be made. The fear inherent in racial prejudice was one of the major contribution factors in the growth of these "Japanese" communities in Maple Ridge. By administering more of their own affairs the Japanese felt that they were not nearly as much at the mercy of others and as a consequence saw through cooperation on a village level a means to success that may have been hindered had their operations been at the discretion of the white community. As we have seen above, the Nokai Hall served as the institutional and social core of the Japanese farming communities in Maple Ridge. As well as serving as centres in the sense the Nokai Hall was centrally located within the midst of a group of Japanese farmers. The Nokai Hall can be considered a node of the farming community-. By examining Map #2 1930 (p. 4), and Map #3 1940 (p. 5), it is fairly obvious that these halls are centrally located close to the middle of a cluster of Japanese farms. The very existance of the Nokai halls so close together is indicative that the principle means of transport at the time of their construction was horse and carriage and foot. Most farmers are within two miles of their Nokai Hall. The two maps #2 and #3 (pp. 4, 5), represent the same area and the Japanese-owned property for the two years 1930 and 1940. Even over 23 the ten-year period the centrality of the Nokai Halls is not affected. In two areas, Haney and Whonnock-Ruskin we can see a significant increase in the extent of Japanese farms but sti l l almost all the new farms es-tablished or old ones taken over .by the Japanese can sti l l be found within a couple of miles from the Nokai Halls. Even in the Whonnock-Ruskin area, which is quite removed from the central Hammond-Haney region of Maple Ridge, it is evident that this phenomena occurs. The writer has described the Japanese farming community in the southeast area of Maple Ridge as Whonnock-Ruskin, and while to some degree this can be considered acceptable in other ways it cannot. A closer examination of the area will show that within this area there are two centres and two Nokai, Whonnock. and Ruskin. It is perhaps the economic feature that forced these two relatively close communities to share the services of a Japanese language teacher. As both were small communities individually they probably could not afford or had the necessary number of pupils for a teacher of their own. The fact that these two Japanese communities of Whonnock and Ruskin went to the trouble to build and operate their own and separate Nokai Halls can also be considered as evidence of the separateness of the two centres. During the ten-year period from 1930 to 1940 the total number of Japanese farmers increased from 201 to 246. Broken down into the four communities we find an increase of 24% in Hammond, 10% in Haney, 72% in Whonnock and 37% in Ruskin. This increase is quite significant and the fact that these increases occurred during a time of general depression indicates that farming did provide the Japanese a relatively secure position 24 during times of economic unrest. The dramatic increases in the Whonnock-Ruskin area may be in part attributed to the later development of the area as a Japanese berry growing centre. There are a number of difficulties to consider when calculating the holdings and extent of the Japanese farming community. ( 1 ) Japanese farmers considered were those with registered holdings in the Municipal Tax Roll; (2) Renters were not considered, because while some were known not all could be found. (3) Often the holding was listed in one name when in reality the farm was operated by some form of family unit. This could include a father and a number of married sons or a number of brothers or even cousins. The possibilities of differing arrangements were many. In some cases the holding was listed by multiple owners but generally only in one name. These are factors to be considered, factors which could affect the exact number of farmers but certainly not the geographic pattern of the holdings themselves. It is very evident from an examination of the two maps showing the extent of Japanese land holdings in Maple Ridge, that there is a definite cluster pattern. However, these clusters started with individual or small groups of farmers who after successful establishing of their farms joined together to first organize the Nokai and then build the Nokai Hall:. Once the Nokai Halls were established they certainly would act as an attractive force that would make a certain area more attractive than another. These Nokai organizations are a product of the ethnic cluster-ing phenomena; the cluster of Japanese farmers preceded the formation of the Nokai. 25 We can look at the clustering of the Japanese farmers in both negative and positive terms but really the writer feels that there is a great deal of social importance in the grouping pattern. It can be considered perfectly natural for a Japanese person to settle near another Japanese and carried on over any period of time it is a reasonable, out-come of such a situation. Acting in concurrence with this is the issue of racial prejudice. While this has been mentioned earlier and wiillbbendiiseusiseddattsomei length it is an important issue in trying to come to any understanding of the land ownership pattern of the Japanese farmers of Maple Ridge. We must consider this factor as a force turning the Japanese community inward and consequently contributing to the overall grouping of the Japanese farmers. Without many of the restrictions of prejudice, both legal and operational, the Japanese may not have tended to cluster to-gether to the same degree that they did. The seeking of a neighbour who was Japanese was a search for a neighbour who was a friend; one who could be counted on in times of need and most of all one who was familiar with the Japanese way of life. In a hostile environment where acceptance as an equal by the white community was almost impossible, the clustering of Japanese was a natural reaction. The explanation of the grouping of the Japanese farmers appears simple and straightfoward. Because of necessity in the form of socio-cultural needs and because of pressure in the form of prejudice the farmers grouped together. While this explanation is sufficient to explain grouping on a national or ethnic level and examination of these same 26 farmers shows that within the simple grouping or clustering we have another grouping or clustering pattern and this is based on the farmer's regional origin within Japan. An examination of the colour pattern on the landownership maps, #2 and #3 (pp. 4, 5), clearly shows that within the clusters of Japanese farmer owners there are also colour clusters. These different colours each represent the prefecture of ken where the farmer came from in Japan. In some cases the farmer-owners came from a Ken providing only a few immigrants to the study area and in this case their properties have been left uncoloured. In one or two cases the writer was unable to de-termine the farmer's prefectural origin and these properties are also left blank. In most cases, however, the properties are coloured, and by examining both the 1930 and 1940 maps we can see the heavy concentration of pink in the Hammond area. This colour represents Fukuoka, the ken providing the majority of immigrants to Maple Ridge. Pink is by far the most common of the colours and it is clearly evident that there are also concentrations of Fukuoka farmers in Haney and in Whonnock. A comparison of the two maps showing the ken origins (Map #2 and Map #3, pp. 4, 5), will show that as well as increasing in total numbers between 1930 and 1940 the increases were primarily by farmers of pre-fectures already well represented in the area and close to those farmers already established by 1930.(see Table 1). This is perhaps best demon-strated by the 77% increase in number of landowners from Kagoshima-fcen. Most of this increase was in the Whonnock-Ruskin area. These landowners from Kagoshima-fcen as well as those from Okayama-fcen show a great deal 27 Table 1 Numbers of Landowners from each Prefecture (those prefectures with 3 or more landowners) Prefecture 1930 1940 % Increas Fukuoka 42 65 55% Hiroshima 27 28 3 Yamaguchi 20 20 0 Kumamoto 17 21 23 Okayama 14 17 21 Kagoshima 13 23 77 Shiga 12 17 42 Kanagawa 5 6 20 Fukushima 4 5 25 Saga 4 2 -50 Wakayama 3 3 0 Nagano 3 4 33 Others 37 35 -Total 201 246 43% 28 of cohesion. Landowners from these two ken are primarily found in only one general area, with Kagoshima-fcen closely tied with the Whonnock-Ruskin area and Okayama-ken with the eastern half of the Haney cluster. It appears that the selection of farm site is strongly influenced by the farmer''sieprovihoial: origins'. Ethnic-national loyalties and their affect on land ownership are much easier to explain. It is unusual however, to see provincial loyalties exhibiting such an influence on the land as is the case amongst the Japanese of Maple Ridge. In the next chapters the writer will develop the history of Japanese emigration and the growth of racial prejudice in British Columbia, two important aspects that will help in understanding why the Japanese farmers in Maple Ridge clustered in both ethnic and k e n -influenced patterns. CHAPTER III EARLY HISTORY OF JAPANESE IMMIGRATION TO CANADA The Meiji Restoration of 1869 not only ended the rule of the Tokugawa Shogunate but also some 250 years of isolation. During the Tokugawa period there had been no movement of Japanese abroad. Any Japanese who left the country was executed if he returned. However with the Restoration Japan's relationships with the outside world changed. The country's new rulers sought contacts with the west and as a result many Japanese travelled to Europe and the United States to learn western technology. These men were not migrants but students, who were only abroad to learn, after which they would return to Japan to share their new found skills and knowledge. While this movement was a departure from the old ways it st i l l remained a small one, during the period 1876-1884 only about 1500 Japanese had journeyed outside of Asia (Ichihashi, 1932:6). The first migration of Japanese was not out of Japan but within her own territory. To counteract Russian expansion in Asia and to keep her northern frontiers secure the Japanese government actively encouraged people from the overpopulated areas of the south to move to Hokkaido. In the fifteen-year period between 1869 and 1884 some 105,000 people migrated to this northern island (Young, 1938:5). It was only after this very successful scheme had run fifteen years that the Japanese government legally allowed her subjects to emigrate and work abroad. 29 30 The first Japanese to arrive in Canada was Manzo Nagano who jumped his ship in New Westminster in 18>Z7. (Young, 1938:7). Arrivals such as this were few but did mark the beginning of what was to become a fairly regular movement of Japanese to Canada. Movement of Japanese across the Pacific did not really begin until after 1884 when the Jap-anese government made an agreement with the Hawaiian government to allow the movement of contract labourers to work on the islands' plan-tations. It was only after 1890 that Japanese in any numbers came to Canada and even then there was little information regarding exact numbers as the Canadian Government's immigration procedures were some-what wanting. Adachi estimates that between 1884 and 1896 about 1,000 Japanese emigrants came to Canada and by 1901 the Canadian Govern-ment gave the country's Japanese population as 4,515 (Adachi, 1958:1; Census 1901; 1:416). Of this 4,500 approximately 2,000 were residents of Steveston, a Japanese fishing community at the mouth of the Fraser River (Young 1938:42). This growth in numbers of Japanese coming to Canada only began after 1894, when the system that had been supplying contract labourers for Hawaiian plantations broke down. This system had been organized primarily by one man, R.W. Irwin, and his recruitment of Japanese labourers was to have a profound effect on Japanese migration to the New World. During a nine-year period from 1885 to 1894 Irwin was res-ponsible for the emigration of about 30,000 Japanese contract labourers to Hawaii. Virtually all Japanese migrants to Hawaii came under Irwin's system and for each emigrant he collected five dollars from the Hawaiian 31 plantation owners. While Irwin had no official monopoly on the supply of Japanese contract labourers to Hawaii, his position in Japan and high official connexions with the Japanese government enabled him to operate a virtual monopoly for almost ten years. As the movement of Hawaiian-bound Japanese became larger some began making their way to Hawaii on their own. Irwin's control of the system soon disappeared but his mark remained. In 1884, when Irwin first began recruiting migrants, he went not to the population centres of Tokyo and Osaka but to the rural areas of Yamaguchi and Hiroshima prefectures in southwestern Japan (see Map #4). Irwin had been assisted in his recruitment by the Mitsui Bussan Company, a firm with which both he and the Japanese Foreign Minister, Inoue Kaoru, had been closely associated. Inoue was from Yamaguchi prefecture and it was on his personal recommendation that Irwin went there to recruit. In addition to this personal recommendation, the governor of Yamaguchi prefecture offered to help supply emigrants to Mitsui Bussan. As a consequence of this advice about half of Irwin's first group of 400 emigrants came from the Oshima District of Yamaguchi-ken, the rest coming from other districts in Yamaguchi and also from Hiroshima. This recruitment pattern continued and later was expanded to include the prefectures of Fukuoka and Kumamoto on the Island of Kyushu (Map #4). During the period of Irwin's control over the system these four prefectures, Yamaguchi, Hiroshima, Fukuoka and Kumamoto, were to be the major source of Hawaii's Japanese contract labourers (Conroy, 1953; 1972:46). Even after 1894, the effect of this recruitment 8 Hokkaido 1. Hokkaido Tohoku 2. Aomori 3. Iwate 4. Miyagi 5. Akita 6. Yamagata 7. Fukushima Kanto 8. Ibaraki 9. Tochigi 10. Gumma 11. Saitama 12. Chiba 13. Tokyo 14. Kanagawa Chubu 15. Niigata 16. Toyama 17. Ishikawa 18. Fukui 19. Yamanash 20. Nagano 21. Gifu 22. Shizuoka 23. Aichi Kinki 24. Mie 25. Shiga 26. Kyoto 27. Osaka 28. Hyogo 29. Nara 30. Wakayama Chugoku 31. Tottori 32. Shimane 33. Okayama 34. Hiroshima 35. Yamaguchi Shikoku 36. Tokushima 37. Kagawa 38. Ehime 39. Kochi Kyushu 40. Fukuoka 41. Saga 42. Nagasaki 43. Kumamoto 44. Oita 45. Miyazaki 46. Kagoshima Map #4 REGIONS A N D PREFECTURES JAPAN vw.0.75 33 pattern remained. Between 1899-1903 these four prefectures were the source of 63% of all emigrants from Japan. Including those prefectures close to these four, the southwestern prefectures of Japan accounted for approximately 82% of all these emigrants (Yoshida, 1909:380). The predominance of the southwestern prefectures of Japan as a source of emigrants has often been explained by the fact that these areas had high population densities as well as being poor and depressed. These factors may well have contributed to the acceptance of emigration as a solution to the people's problems but the fact that other regions of Japan were also experiencing similar conditions seems to indicate that these are not the only factors that influenced the potential emigrant. At the present time there does not appear to be a complete answer to why southwestern Japan became the primary source of emigrants but certainly the historical precedent of Irwin seems to have played a substantial role in starting a trend which continued until 1940. Perhaps due to the success of their relatives and neighbours in their moves abroad the people in this region had a much closer connection with the act of emigration and accepted emigration as a means of improvement more easily than their countrymen in the north. Certainly with refer-ence to those Japanese who came to Canada, most fall into the general pattern and come from this southwestern area. Sumida found in his survey of 1934 that of the 574 "subjects" 542 identified their prefecture of origin and of these 421 or 77.6% came from these southwestern prefectures (Sumida, 1935:54-55). Likewise, in the study area of the 235 Japanese farmers in the Maple Ridge area in 1940, 202 or 83% fall into this pattern. 34 This influence was also present among Japanese emigrating to the United States. Post-war studies have pointed out that even as late as 1958 this pattern could be seen in Japanese emigration to South America (Nishi, 1962:50; Population Index 1965:21). In a more recent study of a small area in Brazil, Staniford found that approximately 40% of the 400 Japanese migrants came from southwestern Japan. (Staiiiiford, 1973:71). While this emigration pattern sti l l seems to operate among Japanese emigrating to farmsteads in South America, Japanese emigration to Canada in the late sixties did not follow this pattern. Between 1965-1969 most of the emigrants came from the large metropolitan areas with Tokyo alone accounting for 37% of them (Read,!1971:7). Contemporary migration of Japanese to Canada is predominantly a movement of skilled urban dwellers to urban centres in Canada whereas the pre-war migration was characterized by the movement of unskilled workers of a primarily rural origin.1 Like most of the migrants who came to the Americas the Japanese were seeking their fortunes. While the Japanese saw California as the best place to go, many moved to the Pacific states of the United States and others came to British Columbia. Even after 1907 and 1908, when the United States and Canada made agreements with Japan to restrict immigra-tion, many Japanese st i l l migrated to South America where both Brazil and Peru now have sizeable "Japanese" minorities. (The estimated 1975 Certainly many immigrants found themselves doing menial work in the urban areas of Vancouver but in these cases the emphasis must be placed upon the origin in Japan as being rural and unskilled. 35 Japanese population of Brazil is 775,000. Continental Times, Jan. 1, 1975:5). One advantage often cited by migrants for moving beyond the Japanese Empire was the avoidance of military service which was com-pulsory for all Japanese males. However, the main reason for coming was to make their fortunes, and like the Chinese their hope was to return home. Those Japanese who came to Canada were no exception. "Birds of Passage," seeking fortunes, they came for wealth. While many accom-plished their, goal, many too stayed and settled and the Japanese community in British Columbia began to grow. During the five-year period from 1896 to 1901 it was estimated that some 14,000 Japanese entered the province (Canada, Royal Commission on Chinese and Japanese Immigration Report, 1902:327). The transitory nature of this Japanese migration is indicated by this large arrival figure and low Japanese population. (Above, p. 3, the Japanese popula-tion was approximately 4,500). Many of those who landed were merely in transit, passing on to the United States. Others will have found condi-tions not to their liking and returned to their homeland while others st i l l will have returned satisfied with the time spent working in the province. The Japanese immigrant was often referred to as being from the bottom of Japanese society and from the economically depressed areas of the country. This "£oolie labourerWawasrprobablyoiiioththat.WhWhtile he may have come from depressed areas the likelihood was more that he was the second or third son of a poorer farmer. The dispossed tenant farmers could not afford the fare to cross the Pacific while this would be within 36 the scope of a poor farmer. Once abroad, remittances would pay the debt, if the money was borrowed, or help the family. A man without land would have little to offer to secure a loan. The immigration procedures of the Japanese government were also strict. As an emerging nation, very conscious of her image abroad, Japan took great pains to see that undesirable immigrants were screened and not issued with travel documents. At all costs Japan wished to avoid embarrassing incidents involving Japanese subjects abroad and because of this allowed only those who would behave well to leave the country. While the Japanese immigrant may have been a poorer member of the farming class he had probably spent a number of years in schools and was literate in Japanese. Most could read and write their native tongue, a skill lacking in many of the eastern European immigrants to the prairies (Canadian Japanese Association 1940:28). During the next few years Japanese immigration slowly increased and the growing numbers of Orientals caused some alarm among the white population. An anti-Oriental riot in Vancouver in 1907 resulted in a change in Canada's attitudes to Japanese immigration and in the follow-* ing year the Japanese Government agreed to allow only 400 Japanese emi-grants to leave for Canada each year. This action brought to a halt the rapid growth of the province's Japanese. Even this restriction was not enough for those who sought total exclusion. Racial prejudice, an issue to be dealt with later, played an important part in the life of British Columbia's Japanese population. While many Japanese prospered and returned, many too decided to stay in Canada. The reasons for staying are many, one including failure 37 to make the fortune that had been the very reason for coming. Others perhaps saw a future here or just needed more time to make their for-tune and gradually became settled to a life in Canada. The Japanese migrant, with few skills to offer but his willing-ness to work, soon found employment in the resource-based industries of the province where his limited knowledge of English was not important and the fact that he could be paid less, an advantage. At the turn of the century British Columbia was prospering and labour scarce, a fact which allowed Oriental labourers to become established much more easily. Most found work in the lumbering and fishing industries but many others found employment as clerks, servants, and in other types of occupations that required little skil l . The Japanese Canadians have traditionally been closely associated with the fishing industry. Many of the first Japanese to arrive in Canada became fishermen and, as has been mentioned, the Japanese fishing community of Steveston was a thriving centre at the turn of the century. For some, Canada was a permament home while for others fishing was a seasonal labour and once the season was over they returned to Japan. The people of Steveston were primarily from Mio Mura, a small fishing community in Wakayama Prefecture and the close relationships that de-veloped gave this village a special character that reflected the Canadian influence upon some of the returning fishermen (Population Problems Research Council #8, 1953). As the fishermen became established in Canada and brought out their wives and children this pattern gradually faded and Canada, not Japan became home. Many fishermen chose to retire in Mio 38-Mura as their savings would go farther, but this too became a passing practice. While the Japanese fishermen are most closely identified with Steveston this was not their only area of fishing activity. Many journeyed up the coast to the Nass and Skeena Rivers where the fish were abundant. All along the coast there were small Japanese fishing villages and canneries where the main source of labour was the fisher-men's wives. The Japanese played a major role in the development of the province's fishing industry. Later, as their share of licences approached half of all those issued, they were restricted by government action (Young and Reid, 1938:43). By 1940, despite the reduction of licences during the twenties, the Federal Government estimated that approximately 1,200 of the 7,982 gainfully employed Japanese were assoc-iated with the fishing industry (Special Committee on Orientals, 1940:8). The other main endeavour in which the Japanese became involved was the forest industry. While the f i r i t Japanese in the province had turned to fishing, soon others were working in the forests, mills and also pulpmills. It was estimated in 1902 that 25% of the workers in the coast forest industry were Japanese (Royal Commission on Chinese and Japanese Immigration, 1902:394].Young and Reid, 1938:47). By 1918 this figure was given as 12.09% (Report on Oriental Activities within the province, 1927:17). Throughout the period from their first arrival in Canada until 1940, the Japanese made up a significant proportion of the labour force in the forests. The advantage offered by the Japanese labourer, as well as the Chinese or East Indian, was that they could be 39 paid less than the white man, an incentive that meant extra profit for the mill operators. As in the fishing industry, the government intro-duced measures to reduce the numbers of Orientals working in the forests. By means of a minimum wage law the incentive for employing cheap Oriental labour was removed and from the government's point of view its objective was achieved with reductions in the numbers of Orientals in the forest industries (Young and Reid 1938:49). As well as working for white em-ployers there were also a number of Japanese-owned logging operations on Vancouver Island and in the Fraser Valley. Even with these restric-tions, the forest industry continued to employ many Japanese and by 1940, 2,000 or 25% of the Japanese work force was in the forests (Special Committee on Orientals, 1940:8). For the majority of Japanese labourers work in the forests was only temporary. It was through this kind of wage work that Japanese fishermen supplemented their incomes during the off season and also the place where many worked until they had enough savings to return to Japan. As a means of saving, the forest industry also provided work for those Japanese who intended to move into farming. After forestry and fishing, agriculture was the most important activity of the Japanese Canadian. The report of 1940 estimated that of the Japanese labour force approxi-mately 800 or 10% were involved in farming. One could speculate that had the Second World War and subsequent evacuation of the Japanese not interrupted the natural development of the Japanese settlement in Canada that the numbers involved in agriculture would have grown considerably. 4'0 For both the new immigrant and old, farming provided a level of security that could not be found in other vocations. In the mid- and late-twenties restrictions had cut back Japanese employment in both fishing and lumbering, while at the same time Japanese farmers had not really suffered. The security that farming offered was probably one of the main reasons many Japanese chose to turn to agriculture as a means of livelihood. In a time when Orientals were discriminated against in many industries, denied the right to vote and excluded from various trades, farming offered an occupation where a man could operate inde-pendently, free from many of these restrictions. Success was dependent on his abilities as a farmer (and of course the climate) and not upon the will of others. This independence also meant that he was not restricted by his inability to use the English language. Sumida points out that in a survey of 1924 that 74% of the Japanese were unable to read and write English and that only 8% were able to understand daily English conversa-tion (Sumida, 1935:64). While these percentages would have certainly changed by the late 1930's the attraction of not having to use English would sti l l be an important consideration for someone who found this language difficult to use. These two important factors, racial discrim-ination and language difficulties made farming a very attractive occupa-tion for the Japanese immigrant and his family. The Japanese first became involved in agriculture as farm labourers but shortly after the turn of the century began buying land and becoming farm operators. The first area where they began farming was along the Fraser River, especially in the communities of Mission, Haney 4.1 and Hammond. During World War I and in the early twenties many moved into the orchards of the Okanagon but never in the numbers that they were in the Fraser Valley. Their entry into agriculture was gradual, beginning in 1904. By 1940 they accounted for about 7% of the fruit farmers in the province and represented about 10% of the Japanese labour force (Special Committee, 1940:8; Census, 1941). The 1940 Special Committee gave the provincial distribution of the Japanese population as follows: Table 2 Distribution of Japanese in B.C., 1940 Area Japanese Population Vancouver City 8,600 Steveston 2,300 Lower Fraser Delta (Vancouver to New Westminster) 2,600 Upper Fraser Delta (New Westminster to Chilliwack) 3,100 Central British Columbia 1,000 West Coast of Mainland 1,900 Vancouver Island 3,500 As can be seen from this table the concentrations of Japanese outside the City of Vancouver and Steveston are in the Upper and Lower Fraser Valley and on Vancouver Island. Many of those concentrated on Vancouver Island were involved in fishing while most of those residents of the Upper Fraser Valley were members of farm families. •4'2 With particular reference to Maple Ridge, Yamaga estimated the 1941 Japanese population to be 1,409, almost one-quarter of the total population of Maple Ridge, making this the third largest Japanese community outside the urban area of Vancouver and the fishing community of Steveston (Yamaga, 1963). As has already been noted in the previous chapter, Maple Ridge describes an administrative area while in fact within this area there were actually four separate and distinct Japanese communities: Hammond, Haney, Whonnock and Ruskin. The concern of this paper is with the emergence of a landowner-ship pattern among the Japanese of Maple Ridge that reflects the immi-grant's regional origin in Japan and how this came to influence the immigrant in his choice of land. To see the growth of the Japanese population of Maple Ridge it is perhaps necessary to describe the manner in which these farm communities became established. The north side of the Fraser River, prior to the turn of the century, has been an area of larger land holdings. The predominantly Anglo-Saxon population engaged in some fruit orcharding and dairy farm-ing but certainly the area could not be considered as one of heavy commercial farming. The agricultural land on the north side between Pitt Meadows and Mission first began to be cleared and farmed by Japanese between 1904 and 1909. The first Japanese farmers were Mankichi Iyamoto who started in Pitt Meadows in 1904 and Tatsuji Matsushita and Hamaji Higashi who began in Port Haney. MrtsMat'Sumotd an'drMrTafak'adatstarted the following year in Port Hammond, as did a Mr. Fujino who purchased 30 acres in Mission, Whonnock, as a Japanese farming community began 43 a few years later in 1909 when Kesaguma Ishimoru, a Mr. Nishikawa and a Mr. Morishige bought land in the area (Yamaga, 1963). )Mankichi Iyamoto had first come to the area about five years before he started on his own. He first worked for the Canadian Pacific Railway and then did clearing on the Chetwin homestead and finally saved enough money to purchase his own land (A. Chetwin, peEspmaleco'mmuni cation). The movement of the Japanese immigrant to his own land was. a process that generally took from about two to five years. While each farmer accomplished this in his own unique way, a general pattern emerged. On his arrival in Canada as a young man, the Japanese immigrant would take any kind of work available, perhaps as a houseboy in a large home in Vancouver or working in one of "the many Japanese shops on Powell Street, or if fortunate, as a labourer in a lumber mill. Most often, in a search for better pay, the new immigrant would seek employment in the lumber mills around Vancouver or anywhere up the coast or on Vancouver Island. As many of these mills had large Japanese crews, news of job opportunities was filtered through the Japanese community and the inter-ested would soon find this type of work. For a young man with limited knowledge of English, these jobs in the forst industry provided the best means to acquiring the money necessary to purchase farmland. A frugal man, if he lived cheaply and worked long hours, could save enough money in a few years to buy land. In addition to saving for land there was also probably a debt in Japan for borrowed passage money and too, the remittances to help his family. Depending upon individual circumstances, after a few years he would be able to buy five to ten acres of undeveloped 44 land in an area such as Haney, Whonnock or Mission. The choice would most likely be determined by friends and relatives, but most important these were areas of Japanese farmers. Sometimes the land would be bought outright, more often mortaged, but almost always the land was unimproved. Another practice, though not as common, was to share the land with a relative or friend. Morishige and Nishikawa did this in Whonnock while the Nagai brothers purchased land together in Haney. The main reason for purchasing uncileared land was cost. In Port Haney between 1908 and 1918 uncleared land was valued at about $120/acre (Sumida, 1935: 288). With these costs and mill wages about 25<£ to 30<f an hour the reason for this choice is obvious. It generally took about four months to clear and prepare an acre (Sumida, 1935:309). The costs of developing an acre for strawberries and raspberries were given by Sumida. After the land was cleared, 7,000 strawberry plants were used per acre at a cost of a penny each if purchased locailly or 3<£ if imported from Missouri. The imported berries were most often used as they were more profitable over time. Later, a locally developed berry, the Royal Sovereign, became very popular. Bonemeal fertilizer was used with approximately 700 lbs. being used per acre at a cost of about $37 per ton. The first year yield was about 300-350 crates/acre and this increased to 400-450 per acre in the second year and then to about 500 in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth years, after which the yields would decline (Sumida, 1935:309). Raspberry canes cost about 6<t each and 2,500 were planted per acre. A three-year period was required for the first yield of 200-250 crates per acre and the three year crop 45 period was followed by a decline (Sumida, 1935:311). As the District of Maple Ridge was also a major lumbering area many new Japanese farmers worked in the many mills and forest operations nearby and cleared their land during their spare time. In the Hammond-Haney area there was Hammond Cedar, a very large mill where the labour force was estimated to be 40% Japanese.(A. Chetwin). Once land was owned outright there was no longer the pressure for cash and the farmer could look after his land full time. This was not always the case however and many farmers even after their farms were well established would do mill work during the off season. One informant estimated that after 1935 there were only about 25 part-time farmers who worked full-time at the mills and tried to farm a fiber hours (D. Oike). The task of clearing land was both slow and difficult. By 1940 very few of the Japanese farmers with about 10 acres of land had more than half cleared and in berry crops. A very descriptive account of how the Japanese farmers cleared their land was given to the writer by K. Neale, a long-time resident, who recounted their liberal use of dynamite. Although the white farmer would use some powder, he used relatively l ittle. He would spend days blasting, chopping and burning the large stumps left after logging operation. In contrast his Japanese counter-part would use more than enough explosives to turn these obstacles into small chunks and chips easily gathered by his wife and children and then used to f i l l the resulting holes. The liberal use of dynamite may be seen by the fact that 70% of the Department of Agriculture grant for explosives was used by the Japanese farmer.(Sumida 46 1935:298). In view of the grant for powder purchase and the use of family labour this may have been a much more economical method of clearing land. It also left more time for the final preparation of the land before planting. The attraction of berry farming was that it was relatively simple and most of all required little capital outlay for machinery and equip-ment. The berry crop provided a fairly ready return unlike the long period required to bring an orchard into production. Most of the immi-grants had come from farm families so the adjustment to berry growing, which required close attention and was relatively intensive by Canadian standards, was not difficult for the immigrant Japanese farmer. Once the farmer was established, or had his land, he would marry and add to his labour force. One of the criticisms often levelled at the Japanese farmers was that they used their wives and children in their fields,,a practice which many white people did not like. The very success of the Japanese farmers often brought criticism because they worked too hard and had such a low standard of living. These actions were seen as a direct threat to the "white" man and if the situation was allowed to continue many felt that there would be no whites left. During the thirties when anti-Oriental agitation increased con-siderably the Japanese were accused of having the best farmland and this was seen as being a part of the Japanese plot to overrun the province. That they had the best berry growing farms was probably true as the Japanese farmers accounted for about 80% of the berry growers in Maple Ridge in 1936 and eight years earlier, in 1928, had produced 92% of the 47 province's strawberry crop and 75% of the raspberry crop (White, 1937: 57; Sumida 1935:314). The success that the Japanese berry growers had was a result of their willingness to work extremely hard and make sacrifices that the white farmer was unwilling to make. Their land had been developed at great cost in time and labour and it was this personal care that the Japanese farmers gave their land and not a devious plan that had resulted in this situation. The success of the berry growers attracted others as they told their friends and relatives and from the neagre beginnings in 1904 and 1905 the Japanese communities in Maple Ridge grew fairly quickly. Some came as labourers and worked their way into farms while others came direct from Japan, bgt within ten years the Port Haney group had in-creased to 15 farmers and by 1924 there were some 55. In Port Hammond the number of Japanese farmers increased to 24 by 1916 and four years later had reached 43. While Whonnock and Ruskin developed somewhat later (1909-1912) by 1930 there were 34 farmers in the area and about 45 Japanese property owners. In 1930 in Maple Ridge there were about 200 Japanese landholders and 10 years later this number had increased by 25% to 250. Not all of these landholders were farmers but most of them probably intended to be as soon as they could. This dramatic in-crease in numbers can partly be attributed to the financial success of the Japanese farmers as well as the fact that once a community became established it attracted more Japanese immigrants. As had already been mentioned the immigrant's inability to speak English was a factor that contributed to their desire to live close to someoiiieelike themselves. 48 In the next chapter a discussion of the growth of anti-Oriental feelings in British Columbia and how this pressure only served to increase the isolation of the Japanese will complete the background to understanding the creation of these ethnic farming communities. These factors, contributed to this insularity and helped shape the patterns of landownership that reflect Japanese regional loyalties. CHAPTER IV GROWTH OF RACIAL PREJUDICE IN BRITISH COLUMBIA When the Canadian Government passed Order-in-Counci 1 P.C. No. 1486 on February 26, 1942, i t acquired the authority to remove all persons of Japanese racial origin from their homes on the Pacific coast of British Columbia (for a detailed account see La Violette, 1948). Of this group of about 23,000 people close to three-quarters were Canadian citizens and about one-third were of military age [Special Committee on Orientals, 1940). The declaration of war with Japan and the fear of sabotage by those loyal to Japan were part of the justifica-tion for the removal of the Japanese from the coastal areas of the province. However, the nation was also at war with Germany and Italy and similar government action was not taken against Canadians whose parents had come from these countries,. The fact that only the Japanese received such treatment indicates that more than a fear of a Japanese invasion or sabotage was behind this special action. It has been reported that "Members of the special Government committee, as well as the mili-tary, police and local authorities, were concerned less at the possibility of subversive activity by the Japanese than at the danger of serious anti-Japanese outbreaks by the white population." [Toronto Globe and Mail, Jan.a20, 1972; Berton, 1948). In light of either consideration: anti-Canadian action by the Japanese or anti-Japanese action by the "white" populace, it was seen as a very grave situation that called for 49 50 a mass evacuation of all people of Japanese ancestry from the protected zone of British Columbia. In retrospect we can now see that this single government action: evacuation, completely destroyed the area in question as a centre of the soft fruit industry. Many of the Japanese farms were taken over by local residents and others just stood idle, but by the war's end in 1945 the industry was dead. The evacuation is a fact that raises many issues including even its legality; however, of real concern to us is not the evacuation itself but how the Canadian Japanese came to be in a situation where they could be evacuated. How did it come to be that they were either feared and/or needed protection from the possible hostile actions of their fellow British Columbians? To gain a perspective of this situation it is necessary to show that while the Japanese became the target of most of the agitation, they were only a part of British Columbia's "Oriental Problem"--a problem that included the province's Chinese and East Indians and emerged well before the turn of the century. The Chinese had been among the province's first settlers when they arrived in the late 1850's. Like so many others they had been lured north from California to join the rush for gold on the Fraser River. Initially they had been welcomed as industrious people who would help in the opening up of a new land but soon the few who had come from the south were joined by others from both California and China and as the great day of placer mining faded anti-Chinese feeling grew. In May of 1867 (tneNNanaiimocGbalmmiine was using Chinese as surface labourers which 51 caused the colliers to voice threats against any Chinese who would enter the pits [Colonist, May 8, 1867). Even in these early days with British Columbia sti l l a colony, the small white population of some 5,635 persons saw the relatively large Chinese population of 2,195 as a real threat (Wynne, 1964:145). It appears that the approximately 35,000 native Indians were considered of little consequence. In subsequent years the percentage of Chinese to total popula-tion dropped but the hostility did not. In 1871, with the promise of a railway link to the rest of Canada, the colony joined Confederation. This decision was to have a long-ranging effect on the Oriental problem in the province for once actual construction started in 1880 it became apparent that the only way the road could be built was through the use of cheap labour and this was Chinese. In spite of protests by the white population, thousands of Chinese coolies were brought in to work on the railroad. In 1881, Andrew Ondereonk brought in two shiploads totalling some 2,000 coolies and the next year ten more of some 6,000 men (Berton 1971:199; Ormsby, 1954:281). The politicians of the province were upset but there was little they could do to restrict the immigration for when the colony joined Confederation immigration had come under Ottawa's con-trol. In the House of Commons in 1879 Amor de Cosmos had supported a petition signed by 1,500 British Columbians that demanded that no Chinese be employed as railway labour (Ormsby, 1954:280). Restrictions were asked for but Ottawa did nothing. Finally in 1885, under strong provin-cial pressure, the Federal Government instituted a head tax of $50.00 on all Chinese immigrants. Although intended to restrict Chinese immigrati 52 the imposition of the tax had little effect and even after 1904, when it had been raised to $500.00 per head, it proved to be quite ineffec-tive. (For more detailed accounts see Cheng, 1931; Woodsworth, 1941; Wynne, 1964). While the head tax had little effect the Provincial Legislature in 1895 tried to bring in an Immigration Act somewhat similar to the Natal Act in South Africa. The basic requirement was the ability to read and write a simple passage in a.European flanguage. The Governor General, Earl Minto, disallowed the Act of 1900 but the Legislature persisted and continued to pass similar legislation in 1902, 1903, 1904, and 1905, all eventually being disallowed. The province was ready for Oriental exclusion but the Federal Government was not. While the Japanese arrived in British Columbia much later than the Chinese it did not take long for their presence to be felt. In 1891 the provincial legislature had tried to raise the Chinese Head Tax and include the Japanese with the Chinese (Young, 1938:7). However, the Legislature failed in this attempt, although it was successful in depriv-ing the Japanese of the franchise in 1895, as they had done to the Chinese in 1874. In 1901 the Oriental population in British Columbia was 19,482, of which 4,597 were Japanese {Report on Oriental Activities Within the Province, 1927). Each year saw more Orientals arrive. Finally in 1904-05, with the entry of the East Indians (or Hindoos as they were then called), the anti-Oriental voice became louder. In the Pacific states of the United States, which were also experiencing, heavy Oriental immigration, 53 anti-Asiatic Leagues had been formed and by August of 1907, owing partly to American influence, an Anti-Asiatic Exclusion League had been formed in Vancouver. As the years 1906, 1907 and 1908 were marked by the arrivals of large numbers of Japanese as well as Chinese it is not surprising that these arrivals aroused the feelings of the anti-Oriental groups. The anti-Oriental feelings had risen to such a state that it would not take much to bring all the animosity out into the open. On Labour Day, 1907, a crowd, turned mob, attacked the Chinese and Japanese sections of Vancouver. The Chinatown sustained a great deal of damage but when the rioters reached the Japanese section they were met by many Japanese with baseball bats, clubs and bottles and the mob was finally dispersed. Both areas were damaged but Chinatown had received the brunt of the attack. The riot received considerable attention in eastern papers as well as in New York and London and as a result of this publicity the Federal Government was forced to take action. The Labour Minister, Rodolphe Lemieux, was sent to Tokyo to confer with Japanese officials while his deputy, MacKenzie King, was sent to London to negotiate with British authorities regarding Indian immigration. (For more detailed information concerning the riot see Sugimoto, 1966). As a result of the mission to England, Indians, although British subjects, were only allowed to enter Canada if they had come by direct passage. As there was no suchhservice, Indian migration was effectively stopped {Report by W.L.M. King, . . . on Mission to England . . 1908). 54 The situation regarding the Chinese and Japanese was somewhat different. Immediately after the riots the Japanese claimed some $9,000 in damages and these were quickly settled. The Chinese claim of some $26,000 was much larger and took a great deal of time to settle but finally, in May of the next year, the government paid full compen-sation to the Chinese (Wynne, 1964:455). Treaties between Japan and Great Britain made any kind of legis-lative restrictions against Japanese on the part of Canada virtually impossible. The Treaty of Commerce and Navigation of July 16, 1894 between Great Britain and Japan gave to subjects of the two countries "full liberty to enter, travel and reside in any part of the dominions and possessions of the other contracting party" (Buell, 1924a:334). While gaining independence in 1867, Canada was sti l l British and wished to remain so. She agreed to the treaty with only minor changes in 1896. While other British dominions, namely South Africa and Australia and New Zealand, had acceded to the treaty of 1894 they required a language test for prospective immigrants. Although it was designed for the ex-clusion of Orientals, the test did not discriminate against them on racial terms and so did not offend the Japanese. Canada, on the other hand, chose not to restrict the entry of Japanese by means of a language test but relied on the restrictive measures taken by the Japanese Govern-ment (Woodsworth, 1941:60). Now the situation had changed considerably; the large increase in Japanese immigration over the past 10 years, the riot of September 1907 and the continual calls from British Columbia for restrictive measures 55 against the Oriental had forced Ottawa to try and solve the problem. Above•-all British Imperial interests remained paramount. A military alliance between Great Britain and Japan, signed in 1902, was considered essential to British defense strategy and London was not ready to allow anti-Japanese legislation by a Canadian province put the agreement in jeopardy. The solution was the "Gentleman's Agreement" whereby Japan would limit the issuance of passports for Canada to four hundred per year thereby drastically reducing immigration without any official dis-crimination (Cheng, 1931:124; Woodsworth, 1941:91). Many people in British Columbia were not happy with the agreement and wanted total exclusion but this was not to be considered. Restric-tions directed against an ally of Great Britain would come into conflict with the policies for the Empire (Cheng, 1931:72). It is in this situation, where Imperial policies were to have a profound influence on Federal-Provincial relations, that we fiind the dilemma of the "white" British Columbian. He was at once a part of the Empire but, at the same time, was in a position where he felt the province was being sacrificed for the Empire's greater need: the military alliance with Japan (Woodsworth, 1941:85). The riot of September 1907 marked the beginning of a more vocal anti-Oriental feeling and it put the issue into the arena of Canadian Federal politics. The issue had always been alive in British Columbia and while brought to Ottawa by the provincess members it had always been considered a British Columbia problem not a Canadian one. Two weeks after the riot, R.L. Borden, Leader of the Opposition made a speech in Vancouver 56 which emphasized that Canada must remain white. Let us respect the allies of Great Britain, but let us remember that there are other considerations beside trade relations and material advancement, and of much greater importance. We must not allow our shore to be over-run with Asiatics and become dominated by an alien race. British Columbia must remain a white man's country; the same blood must flow in the veins of those who built up Eastern and Western Canada as flowed in the veins of those who made Great Britain; and while we respect the grand old flag of Britain which floats over our heads, and are proud of her institutions and our loyalty, we must expect, and have a right to expect, the same measure of justice meted out to us as it meted out to any other part of the Empire. (Hopkins, 1908:392) While Borden and others were raising the spectre of an invasion from the Orient, an English writer of the day viewed the matter from the British Imperial point of view: There is lamentable evidence that the colonial agitators and their dupes appear to be absolutely insensible ef the Empire to which they belong, and of the duties which each portion of that Empire owes to the whole. Thus we see that race prejudice is tending to tear ass under the British Empire under a false and spacious plea of preserving the various colonies for the British-born white man. (Stead, 1907:642). However, the cry for a "white Canada" was a political issue and the stance of Laurier's government can be seen jn Mackenzie King's Report on his mission to England regarding immigration from India. That Canada should desire to restrict immigration from the Orient is regarded as natural, that Canada should remain a white man's country is believed to be not only desirable for economic and social reasons but highly necessary on political and national grounds. (Report by W.L.M. King . . . on Mission to England . . . 1908 57 To Canadians the idea of a "white" country may have been desirable. To the British Columbian it was a necessity for his survival. To him the Oriental was seen as a very great threat to his very existence. In a few short years the Japanese had come to dominate the fishing industry and were to be found, with the Chinese, forming a large part of the work force in the lumber mills. The Oriental was different, never given the credit of wanting to be a part of the country he was seen to be an in-sidious outsider who was not assimilable into the mainstream of Canadian life. In spite of strong provincial support for the idea of a white Canada, there was no practical means of accomplishing this goal. East Indian immigration had been stopped completely, but this had been easily done because India was a British colony and the authorities in London were more willing to cooperate [Report by W.L.M. King . . . on Mission to England . . . 1908:8). Restriction of Chinese had been hoped for through the imposition of the head tax. The tax proved to be little deterrent and it was only in 1904 when the tax had been raised to $500 that there was any drop in the flow of Chinese immigrants. The effectiveness of the high tax only lasted a few years and by 1911 Chinese immigration had almost reached the level of 1903 (Table III). The demand for the cheap labour was enough to overcome the effec-tiveness of the tax. Wages for the Chinese labourer had doubled and now the prospective migrant could borrow to pay the tax and in the long term come out ahead (Woodsworth 1941:100; Cheng 1931:74). With the coming of World War I the demand for their labour increased further and many 58 Table 3 Chinese Immigration to Canada, 1902-1914 Fiscal Year Entered Exempted from Head Tax 1902 3,587 62 1903 5,329 84 1904 4,847 128 1905 77 69 1906 168 146 1907 291 200 1908 2,234 752 1909 2,106 695 1910 2,302 688 1911 5,320 805 1912 6,581 488 1913 7,445 367 1914 5,512 238 Source: Woodsworth, 1941:287. 59 thousands more Chinese came. In 1919, as the soldiers returned from overseas, they found that many of their jobs had been taken by Chinese. Many veterans felt that the Chinese had benefited by their absence and there was a renewal of anti-Oriental feeling. The campaign for Oriental Exclusion grew and finally, in 1923 after much pressure, Parliament passed a Chinese Exclusion Law. The position of the Japanese in British Columbia was much differ-ent from that of either the Chinese or East Indians. Even before the 1907 riot "the antagonism was the strongest in the case of the Japanese. They were considered more aggressive . . . and more likely to take root." (Woodsworth, 1941:74). The Asiatic Exclusion League had passed a resolution declaring that the Japanese, if not controlled, would even-tually control the province (Woodsworth, 1941:74). The idea of conquest by a peaceful penetration of the province by the Japanese became quite widespread and later this was to become one of the dominant themes in the anti-Japanese literature. While the Japanese were singled out as being more undesirable than the Chinese or East Indians they also enjoyed a measure of official protection that was not accorded the other two Oriental groups. Japan was an independent nation. The government of Japan was also concerned that Japan should become a strong nation and had set about to build a modern westernized army and navy. The success of the Japanese in achieving this goal was demonstrated during the Sino-Japanese War which ended in 1895 and again when the Japanese Imperial Navy des-troyed the Russian fleet during the Russo-Japanese War. 60 Britain, already militarily overextended, had recognized Japan's growing military might and entered into the Anglo-Japanese Alliance in 1902. This alliance, like the Treaty of Commerce and Navigation of i894, indirectly served to protect Japanese in Canada. In 1911, when the 1894 treaty between Britain and Japan was renewed, Canada acceded to the treaty on the condition that it did not conflict with a new Canadian Immigration Act passed in 1910. Many felt that "the Japanese note which Canada had accepted, prevented Canada from administering the Immigration Act so as to discriminate against the Japanese." (Buell, 1924a:337). British Columbians were not happy with this situation but before any real protest could be mounted the First World War was under-way and the needs of the war were more pressing. During the war, the Alliance with Japan had a redeeming benefit. Japan true to her commit-ment had entered the war on the British side and because Canada had no naval defences on the Pacific coast, the presence of Japanese warships gave British Columbians some sense of security. This arrangement lasted until 1917 when America entered the war and took control of the con-tinent's Pacific coastal defence (Woodsworth, 1941:163). In the period following World War I, in addition to passing the Chinese Exclusion Law, a decision was made to reduce by 40% the numbers of Orientals holding fishing licences. As this industry was dominated by the Japanese this was a significant move on the part of the Federal Government which, to this time, had refrained from any action that could be interpreted as being anti-Japanese. 61 The twenties proved to be a prosperous time for British Columbia and the Japanese and Chinese did well. As previously shown, many Japanese turned to farming as a result of their forced exit from the fishing industry and along with the Chinese formed a significant part of the province's agricultural sector, becoming major suppliers of locally grown produce. In the House in 1922, W.G. McQuarrie, Member of Parliament for New Westminster, pointed out that the United Farmers of Canada at their convention in January of that year had Resolved that we are opposed to orientals owning or leasing land in the province of British Columbia. That all oriental produce be marked as such. That we go on record as against all leasing and selling of property to Orientals. That in future all oriental immigration be excluded from B C (H.C. Debates, 1922:1513) In spite of prosperity, fear of the Japanese remained and continuous provincial agitation finally forced the Federal Government to renegotiate the Gentlemen's Agreement with Japan in 1928. Under the new Gentlemen's Agreement immigration to Canada was not to exceed one-hundred-fifty persons per year, a reduction from the original limit of four hundred (Woodsworth, 1941:115). One of the main reasons for the singling out of the Japanese as being the group to fear, rather than the Chinese, was the fact that the Japanese gave every indication that they had come to reside in Canada on a permanent basis. The initial movement of Japanese to the province was that of the seasonal labourer, but as these men began to settle they brought their wives and a system of "picture brides" operated 6 2 between Canada and Japan. Under this system, a young man once settled, or with some savings, would make arrangements with his parents in Japan to select a wife. They would then send him pictures and information regarding one or a number of what they considered eligible girls. He would then choose his bride from the photos and his parents would make the arrangements for his marriage. Once he was married he could then apply to the government for a passport for his wife and she could enter Canada without restriction as there was no provision for the exclusion of wives of Canadian residents or citizens. This system proved to be a very, efficient means of changing the Japanese community from one of men to one of families. While this system may not appeal to the western man, to the Japanese it was not at all unusual. In Japan, marriages were arranged by the parents and the "picture bride" system only added a new twist to what had been standard procedure for many generations. With the arrival of women the growth of the Japanese community was assured. This change also served to emphasize to the white popula-tion that the Japanese intended to stay and also clearly differentiated them from the Chinese community which was very predominantly male. The Chinese never brought women to join them as their stay in Canada would be over as soon as they had saved enough money to return to China. It also meant that while the Chinese were more numerous than the Japanese they were not feared nearly as much. All port has pointed out the "periods of unemployment and depres-sion, and general dissatisfaction are all positively correlated with 63 Table 4 Chinese and Japanese in British Columbia, Canada 1931 and 1931 Chinese Japanese Canada 46,519 23,342 B.C. 27,139 22,205 Source: Canadian Census, Vol II, 296-97. JAPANESE : IS 10 5 0 S 10 MALES FEMALES Porcentaga in « a c h Age.Group Figure 1. Age Pyramids of Chinese and Japanese in British Columbia (Census of 1931) Source: Woodsworth, 1941:127. 64 prejudice. . . . The apprehensive and marginal man is vaguely terrified at any signs of ambition or progress on the part of any number of the out-group, whether or not it may constitute a realistic danger." (Allport, 1954:370). Accordingly, although the crash of 1929 and the subsequent depression made economic conditions as difficult for the Japanese Canadians as for others, to the white man the Japanese was ambitious and the thirties saw anti-Oriental agitation become more alarmist. The growing militancy of Japan, the Manchukuo affair of 1931 and Japan's withdrawal from the League of Nations only served to help the anti-Japanese agitators. The alarmist point of view held that Japan planned to take over British Columbia as she had Manchuria. "An orderly advance is noft in progress carrying a Japanese population along the Fraser Valley on both sides of the river and into the one-time socially exclusive Okanagan. . . . Observers of current events are aware that the national genius that governed the Manchurian adventure directs the peaceful penetration into Canada, only the weapons are different." (Hope, 1933:54-55). With a Sino-Japanese War clearly on the horizon many Canadian missionaries who had been active in China began to return to Canada to wait until hostilities were over and they could return to their work. Many of them spread stories of Japanese activities in China and thus influenced public opinion (Ila Violette, 1947:25). Some Japanese tried to justify the actions of Japan which only served to increase the anti-Japanese feeling and finally, when war between Japan and China did break out in 1937, the worst suspicions about Japan were confirmed. 65 The increase in anti-Japanese feelings had created a position in which Canadian-born Japanese were forced to prove that they were Canadian. While many of their immigrant parents had accepted the lack of the franchise, the second generation, or nisei, were not content to do so. Although not deprived of the Federal franchise, those Japanese Canadians naturalized or Canadian-born could not vote Federally because they had been disenfranchised provineially. The only Japanese who had the vote were those who had served with the Canadian forces during World War I. The denial of the provincial franchise legally prevented the Japanese Canadians from voting in municipal elections, voting for school trustees, voting for trustees of an Improvement District under the Water Act, as well as being excluded from the Provincial Legislature, from nomination for municipal office, nomination for school trustee and from jury duty. By regulation of the Societies, which required that a member be on the voter's list, they were prevented from becoming lawyers and pharmacists. By custom they had never been employed in the public service of British Columbia and "the employment of one of them, while not illegal, would occasion general amazement." (Angus, 1931:5). Aside from these restrictions there were others relating to the employment of Asiatics on Public Works contracts and on Government timber. British nationality did not protect the Japanese born in Canada because the legal restrictions were based on racial and not national grounds. (For more information see: Angus 1931; Lett 1934). In 1936 the Canadian Japanese Citizens League prepared a brief asking for enfranchisement of Canadian born Japanese. They were represen 66 before an election committee in Ottawa by T.G. Norris, K.C., a prominent Vancouver lawyer, but their attempt did not meet with success (Norris, 1936). In reply to the brief submitted by Norris, T. Reid, a Conserva-tive M.P. from British Columbia, argued from the position of "peaceful penetration" for he felt that Once the Japanese secure the franchise in British Columbia the next objective contemplated is to obtain legislative positions, such as Municipal, Provincial, or Dominion, and this was readily admitted by one of the Japanese delegates. When that time comes, the Japanese Government will then have an active voice in Canada and so help to shape the policies of this country. (Special Committee on Elections and Franchise Acts, 1937:231) This type of argument stressed the point that unlike Canadians from Britain or Europe, the Japanese Canadian, even though born and raised in Canada, would remain loyal to Japan and consequently could not be assimilated. Assimilation was very important to those against the Japanese. They felt that because of racial differences between whites and Japanese that the Japanese could not become Canadians, could not be acculturated into Canadian society. A typical attitude was that of Howard Green, a Conservative M.P. and later Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Diefenbaker government: The Japanese people do not intermarry with whites; and mind you they are just as much opposed to such intermarriage as the whites are. It is not a question of one race being superior and the other inferior; the simple fact is that marriage is not wished for by either face. Then there is the question of language. The Japanese even have their own schools after the regular day school. . . . (House of Commons, Debates, 1938:558-9) 67 The fact that other peoples of different ethnic origins also had language schools did not matter. The existence of the Japanese language schools was seen as direct evidence that their loyalties were with Japan. In 1938, even as the situation in the Orient became more troubled and antagonism towards the Japanese increased, Parliament would sti l l not pass a bill excluding the Japanese. Prime Minster Mackenzie King told the house that "with the affairs of the world what they are, this Parliament of Canada should not contemplate for one minute placing an exclusion act upon its statutes, especially an act directed against Japan . . . " (House of Commons, Debates, 1938:544). The Japanese Canadian found himself in a difficult position, one that left him in a state of limbo. He was on one side accused of not being assimilable into Canadian society while at the same time being denied access to the franchise and other factors that could help him fit into that society. The older people who had emigrated from Japan and who for the most part spoke Japanese, st i l l had traditional ties with their homeland, especially under circumstances in British Columbia where they could not become Canadians in the proper sense. The Canadian born, nisei, were in a much more confused position. This group formed approximately 56% of the Japanese Canadian population and while they were Canadianized, the doubts and fears of their parents, as well as public mistruct of their motives, emphasized their precarious position. When war with Germany broke out in 1939, Orientals were not permitted to enlist. Even though many Japanese had been to the University of British Columbia and had participated in the officer-training plan, they were denied the 68 opportunity to prove their loyalty by enlisting in the Canadian Services. As the international situation became more grave and the Japanese Government was drawing closer to the Axis powers, concern grew over British Columbia's Japanese and in 1940 the War Cabinet appointed a Special Committee to investigate the Oriental population of the province. In summarizing the report's findings one idea expressed was 'tithe problem of the Oriental in British Columbia is the problem of the Japanese." (Special committee on Orientals, 1940:15). Whether or not the Japanese really constituted an economic threat and were part of a "peaceful invasion" that could turn against the white population is of little consequence. In the Japanese the people of British Columbia saw an economic threat and "peaceful invaders." Those who called for calm and reason, such as H.F. Angus, carried little weight against the rhetoric of the alarmists, and the Special Committee of 1940 pointed out that it "received ample evidence to show that hostility to-ward the Japanese has been deliberately inflamed by certain individuals for reasons which can only be ascribed to a desire for political advan-tage." (Special Committee on Orientals, 1940:11). When war with Japan finally did break out in December of 1941, the immediate success of the Japanese armies only served to intensify the white British Columbian's antagonism and new fear of the Japanese. The action of the Federal Government in evacuating the Japanese Canadians from the Pacific Coast may be seen as an action not totally irresponsible in the light of the position in which the Japanese found themselves. Whether or not the appeasement of public opinion was the correct action 69 is open to speculation but certainly,? when considered in the light of provincial feelings, it may be seen as a move that was not entirely anti-Japanese. In conclusion to this summary of the growth of racial prejudice in British Columbia it is interesting to note some of the responses that the writer received from many people interviewed in the course of field work in the study area. It was surprising that almost thirty years after the end of World War II, so many people st i l l held such strong views of the Japanese farming population. Generally they seemed to have regarded the Japanese as good people, scrupulously honest and hard-working. But most were sti l l convinced that on the eve of the war these same farmers were heavily armed and prepared to fight on the Japanese side the moment that the Emperor gave his command. As for evidence of spying activities or hidden arms caches these were "reliable reports of friends of friends." The fact that no Canadian Japanese was ever convicted of spying does not seem to bear out these expressed fears. These and other fantastic stories seem to have been the product of a social situation where one group, because of the prejudice directed against i t , became largely independent of the main-stream of the society. The growth of mistrust and fear only helped to create and emphasize the separateness of the Japanese Canadian society, as found in the farming communities of Maple Ridge. By these very processes, these communities saw their only means of survival as through increased cooperation among themselves and thereby served to emphasize the isola-tion and independence of their Japanese character and nature. 70 Racial prejudice is an emotional reaction primarily based upon - fear and ignorance. In this specific instance it is apparent that the racial prejudice that the Japanese farmers faced was certainly a con-tributing factor in the emergence of a landownership pattern that emphasized ethnic differences and subsequent community structure. The creation of Japanese villages within the Canadian landscape, while not solely a product of prejudice, was certainly strongly influencedbby these feelings. CHAPTER V iffiW-CONSCIOUSNESS The home ken, or province of origin, appears to have had a great influence upon where Japanese-Canadian farmers settled. For a farmer, who would be sensitive to land quality, to make a choice of land that appears to place this factor second and ken first, demands some kind of reasonable explanation. Using this idea simply, it seems apparent that ken origin is an extremely important factor to the potential land-owner. It is difficult to assess the relative land qualities of the day and this too most certainly would also be influenced by land availability and price. Nonetheless to find such an obvious concentration of ken clusters would certainly lead one to make the observation that ken is important to the Japanese Canadians. The purpose of this chapter is not to try to balance land quality against ken influence but to try to give reasons why ken should be of any influence at al l . Given the situation of the pre-war Japanese one would expect ethnic clustering, but ken concentrations seem to defy any simple explanation. A quick comparison of the Maps #2 and #3 (pp. 4, 5) shows fairly clearly that within the Japanese farming communities of Maple Ridge the "perfectural origin" functions at a very important level. This land-ownership pattern, that reflects regional origins in Japan, may be partially explained through "Japan—New World contacts." The idea here 71 72 being that a farmer who brought over a relative or helper would more than likely bring them from the same prefecture from which he came. This, while a reasonable assumption, is not sufficient to provide an explanation. There appears to be no pattern to this as there is no necessity that a relative lives nearby. Certainly relatives did come, but the prefectural groupings are not family groupings and most often ken is the only common factor. This factor of ken played a very important role in Japanese Canadian society. This was not only in the agricultural centres of Maple Ridge but in other Japanese groups in British-Columbia. The writer has chosen to describe this phenomena of the Japanese immigrant's strong feelings toward his regional origin as "ken-consciousness" from the Japanese place name suffix ken used to denote prefecture. "Zen-consciousness" largely appears to be a new world phenomena found among the Japanese immigrants to the Americas. While a Japanese (in Japan) recognizes his ken of birth and has provincial loyalties to that ken the writer has never been able to discover anything resembling the "ken-consciousness" that is such an important part of the social fibre of pre-war Japanese Canadian society. In Japan this consciousness is mainly expressed in personality stereotypes. How can we explain the growth of this special kind of "ken-consciousness" in Canada? Chie Nakane in her book, Japanese Society, stresses the role of the individual in Japanese society and points out that what is important to a Japanese is not himself but his position. He places himself in society with reference to others or to his position as a part of a greater 73 whole. He works for company A, he is Professor B's student or associate, or he comes from village C. The importance of group is paramount. Nakane uses the example of executives in large firms being promoted at the same time and to the same level as others who joined the firm at the same time. The Japanese is identified in relation to others; he never stands alone (Nakane 1970:2,3,36). By using this idea of the group and its supreme importance with reference to Canada and the pre-war Japanese Canadian society it becomes clear that upon his arrival in Canada the Japanese immigrant was without his principle fr?ameo6frrefer-ence, without his peer group and stood alone, socially naked. He was in a new land and many of the old values were no longer applicable. He worked in a Canadian mill or cannery, or even fished or farmed alone, and these things had no Japanese reference. He could no longer claim his home village for reference for while in Canada he was not a member of that village and even so, few in Eamadaowoili^ d attach any significance to his home village. The only readily available thing to which he could relate was his ken. "I am from Kagoshima-ken." Using this geographical fact as a social reference he instantly became a member of a group, a group of people who came from the same prefecture in Japan. As most Japanese Canadians were from southwestern Japan it was not difficult to find someone from the same ken and as the Japanese Canadian population grew, ken ties created the group to which an immigrant could always belong. Of. course there were other groups and organizations to which he could belong, but even within these he was identified with his home prefecture. The ken-brotherhood stood high in the hierarchy of social groups demanding 74 the immigrant's allegiance and the result was the grouping of immigrants in perfectural terms. This group consciousness of the Japanese people and their need to orient themselves socially by, reference to a group is perhaps the single most important factor in explaining why ken became important to the Japanese Canadian. However the need for group identification, while important, is not the sole factor contributing to this "fcen-consciousness" and the resultant landownership pattern. In addition to this factor we can also refer to the historical regionalization of Japan. During the Tokugawa period (1600-1867), the daimyo or barons of this feudal period in Japan, had extensive control over the people of their fiefs. The peasant had virtually no freedom of movement. He could not leave his village for another or move to a town and enter some other profession. He was, in fact, a stationary chattel of his lord. In some cases bridges were often not built for the very purpose of dis-couraging interfief movement, while at the same time there were controls which in effect were like customs, governing what interfief movement and trade there was (Inoue, 1968:90). During the Meiji Restoration, Japan's modern prefectural structure was formed and these traditional fiefs generally became the building blocks of the modern system. This historical place-consciousness of the people tended to emphasize their traditional sensitivity to what eventually appeared in Canada in the form of a regional brotherhood. Associated with this regional aspect in his historical sense is the matter of language. Within Japan there are hundreds of regional dialects. Most prefectures have their own dialects or 75 or dialects that can be associated with their regions. Once in the new world, communication with someone from one's home ken would probably be easier but whether dialectic differences would have been great enough to encourage a prefectural identification, is difficult to assess. While the differences may have been great, these people were sti l l Japanese and were able to communicate with each other well enough to operate rMSMis and cooperatives. Language differences, while not really very important, would offer an additional flavour or identification with the home prefecture and in this way could contribute to the "ken-con-sciousness." Another factor contributing to "ken-consciousness" and the land-ownership pattern that reflects this is the manner of emigration from Japan to Canada and the problems experienced by the new immigrant. As stated earlier while the route of the Japanese immigrant generally led first to the lumber camps and then to his establishment as a farmer, the overall pattern of migration was very complex. Many Japanese farmers brought over relatives, friends, and acquaintances from their home village in Japan. When the farmer needed labour the selection of a labourer from the home village was natural; he would have been corresponding with his parents and could easily pass on the message of his need for help. This same general practice had been used to bbtanjn his bride and it was an easy and. natural way to bring in an assistant. An immigrant farm labourer would really be a form of indentured labour and this arrangement between the farmer and Japan would place obligations on the labourer and contribute to the success of 76 the agreement. By doing the man the favour of bringing him to Canada the labourer would be in great moral debt to the farmer and any action that jeopardized or broke the arrangement would be reported to the home village in Japan and the labourer's relatives would be shamed by his poor conduct. Again the pressure of the group would make the completion of any contractural obligation imperative. Failure to do so would be virtually unacceptable. This pattern Of communication between Canada and Japan and subsequent migration had a number of different forms. Often the initiative was taken in Japan byta youngnman who desired to leave his village and seek his fortune abroad, making contact with a relative or person from his village already established in Canada. Some kind of arrangement would be made in Canada with the relative seeking a position for the prospective immigrant through a channel of friends and relatives already in Canada and making arrangement for his emigra-tion. Once in Canada the farm labourer would be bound to his employer for two to five years following which the farmer would then help the young man establish himself. These types of arrangements were used to bring out relatives and friends and it was noted by Sum'da in his survey (1934), that 51% of the Japanese people he interviewed had friends or relatives in Canada (Siumid'a , 1935:58). This system of contacts between the immigrant and his home village in Japan contributed greatly to the emergence of certain prefectures dominating as sources of immigrants in the Maple Ridge area. In most cases this would be a perfectly natural procedure, the farmer's wife most often came from his home village and the continuation of the contacts 77 between the two places would only serve to encourage links that would result in the growth of numbers from a select number of villages. The growth of this prefectural pattern in itself helped to strengthen it . While researching this information one informant stated that it was not uncommon for an immigrant to just look up a person from the same pre-fecture and see if there was any way he could be helped. He may not have known the man he sought out at al l . The only information that he might have was the man's name, that they both came from Fukuoka-ken and that the man had a farm in Haney. In such cases there would be a great deal of obligation on the part of the farmer to do his best to help a ken-brother in need. He may hot have nee'ded a labourer himself but he would make an effort to see if there was work available or to find him some kind of position, no matter how temporary (D. Oike, personal communi-cation). The prefectural'bond created an obligation; an obligation to a member of the same social group and in this way the meaning of ken and "ken-consciousness" of the Japanese community grew in importance and influence. An outgrowth of these ken ties was an organization that used ken origin as its criteria of membership. These were the kenjinkai or prov-incial clubs. Primarily social organizations, they also provided welfare and gave economic assistance. In Vancouver in the late 1930's there were seven kenjirikai. Those with the most members were generally the strongest and these were kenjirikai of the prefectures providing the larger members of immigrants, such as Hiroshima, Fukuoka and Okayama. In Maple Ridge the two principal pre-fectures were Fukuoka and Hiroshima and both these groups had strong 78 kenjinkai. One main function of the kenjinkai was the New Year's Day celebration at the Haney Nokai Hall while another was an annual picnic. One informant related that the young people's group of the Fukuoka kenjinkai or seininkai on one occasion made a trip to Seattle to meet with their brother group in that city (D. Oike, personal communication). In a thesis examining the Japanese in southern California, Fukuoka' (1937) noted many of the functions performed by the kenjinkai in the Los Angeles area. She also pointed out that i t was not until after the crash of '29 that Japanese farmers in southern California organized Nokais. Before this they relied upon their kenjinkai for mutual support. While the kenjinkai may have had different levels of operation dependent upon situation it was sti l l an organization that was uniquely Japanese and based on ken tie. In an earlier work describing the pre-war Japanese-American society in Seattle, Miyamoto noted the importance that ken played in the structure of that urban society. He found there was a definite pressure upon people from the same ken to do business with each other as well as pointing out the strong social bond between people of common ken. The direct result being those from the larger kens had strong groups while those from the smaller kens were in a much weaker position. To illustrate this point he uses the example of an insurance salesman from one of the smaller kens who had been forced to give up selling insurance because the Japanese-Americans to whom he had been trying to sell were all obligated to purchase insurance from someone who came from the same ken (Miyamoto, 1939:79). While Miyamoto shows a number of aspects 79 of the importance of ken groups he sti l l points out that "it is possible to overstress the importance of the ken . . . and to overlook the stronger bonds which tie one Japanese to another regardless of his other connections" (Miyamoto, 1939:79). The "stronger bonds" to which he was referring was that of kinship. The writer would argue that while kin-ship is undoubtedly a stronger bond it falls largely within ken bounds and rather than act against the ken tie it strengthens it . The only part of Miyamoto's paper that gives any hint of any geographical implications with reference to ken is a statement by one of his informants who said that "There was a tendency toward the concen-tration of people from the same prefectures in Japan at the same places, and in the same lines of work. For example, the barbers in Seattle, at least in the old days, all tended to be people from Yamaguchi-ken ..." (Miyamoto, 1939:74). While Miyamoto's study of the pre-war Seattle Japanese brings out some of the important aspects of "ken-consciousness" it does not develop the idea of any residential pattern based on prefectural origins. It is certainly quite possible that the writer is overemphasizing the importance of ken, as Miyamoto warns, but by closely examining the two maps of the District of Maple Ridge for 1930 and 1940 (Map #2 and #3, pp. 4,5), it is apparent the ken origin appears to influence the landownership pattern within the already established Japanese farming community. It is clear that the overall clustering of Japanese strawberry growers ex-hibits a unified and Japanese orientation. Upon closer examination this breaks down to an ownership pattern rooted in the traditional regional loyalties brought with the immigrant from Japan. 80 These ken loyalties are difficult to assess and understand but the emergence of a landownership pattern that seems to be so affected by prefectural origins only indicates that within the pre-war Japanese Canadian society ken affiliation was important. Today this "ken-conscious-ness" and ken loyalty is not very stronig but any Nisei asked his pre-fectural origin, or really his father's prefectural origin, will not hesitate in giving the answer. In gathering information for this paper one informant, who gave a great deal of assistance in locating the farms of early Japanese immigrants in the study area, was able to correctly identify the prefectural origin of about 90 farmers out of a total list of some 110. On rechecking this information with Th& Directory of Japanese in Canada of 1940, which listed every Japanese household in Canada and identified their prefectural origin, the writer found that his informant was amazingly accurate in his choices. He correctly identified almost a l l , and the fact that he had been looking back to a period of his own childhood thirty-five to forty years ago only serves to emphasize the importance that was placed on ken origin. Another informant, an old man in his eighties, also demonstrated a similar ski l l , and while not as accurate as the first informant, he was sti l l able to identify the pre-fectures of about three-quarters of those asked. The fact that the community directory of 1940 would list the prefectural origin of the household's head shows that this phenomena is not without importance. While the "ken-consciousness" is no longer as strong as it may have been, it st i l l operates. An informant described an incident that took place only recently but clearly demonstrated this. The informant's 81 father-in-law came to stay for a few weeks with him and his wife in Vancouver, and while he was here he went to visit a man from his home prefecture. When questioned why he would seek out a man he did not know, and for that matter had never met, he replied with words to the effect that their common prefectural heritage was more than enough reason to visit him. The fact that the informant and his wife had little respect for the man did not matter, the prefectural bond created a brotherhood and the two older men visited on a number of occasions. To describe more examples of the importance of the role that prefectural origin plays in the pre-war Japanese Canadian society is needless. As already mentioned above, it is sufficient to ask any Nisei born before 1940 his ken and he will be able to tell you. The idea of "ken-consciousness" and the importance of the tradi-tional regional loyalties of Japanese immigrants and their subsequent transfer to their Canadian-born children is demonstrated on the Canadian landscape in the District of Maple Ridge. To actually assess whether it is ken alone that provides the explanation of this landownership pattern or a series of complex social values, interdependent upon the role of kinship and other sociological factors, is beyond the scope of this paper. The main idea to be presented in this thesis is that ken origin and ken ties of Japanese immigrants had an observable effect upon the landscape of Maple Ridge. CHAPTER VI SUMMARY The study of human settlement ii.n various parts of the world is a common inquiry in geography. TIJis thesis is an examination of the ethnic clustering and landownership patterns of the pre-war Japanese Canadian farmers of Maple Ridge, British Columbia. It is an evaluation of the response of this ethnic group in a particular situation. In summary, the three main points of the thesis (not necessarily in order of importance) are: (1) Ethnic grouping and the emergence of the Nokai. The Japanese Canadian farmers retained a fairly strong ethnic tie. The group identi-fication is clearly seen in the ethnic clustering pattern. As a product of this ethnic loyalty and identity, the Japanese Canadian economic and social institution of the Nokai became the symbolic centre of the community. Through the Nokai's leadership in the establishment of the Nokai hall., the Japanese Community not only had a symbolic centre but a physical centre as well. Thus the Nokai organization and Nokai hall, acting in conjunction with an overriding ethnic awareness, operated as cohesive forces within the Japanese community. (2) Ethnic clustering strengthened by racial prejudice. In con-trast to the cohesive forces implicit in ethnic awareness, the white community's overall stance of racial prejudice directed against the Japanese must be seen as a force that contributed to the creation of an 82 83 inward-looking Japanese community. Throughout most of British Columbia's short history, the larger white community has displayed a strong anti-Oriental bias and this factor made the Japanese immigrant's identifi-cation with, and dependence upon the Japanese community, a virtual necessity. With the white community hostile to Japanese Canadian over-tures at integration, security could be found in the creation of a separate Japanese Canadian society. (3) Zen-consciousness within the Japanese Canadian community  and its manifestation on the land. The above factors contributed greatly to the creation of these Japanese Canadian communities. However, the development of a landownership pattern within these communities influenced by traditional regional loyalties, demonstrates that the idea of ken-consciousness was an important element in decisions made by individuals regarding where to settle in the community. In several Japanese immigrant communities on the North American West Coast, these regional loyalties or ken ties have been observed in the form of kenjinkai (or prefectural clubs). However a geographic expression of these ken loyalties, such as these observed in the Japanese Canadian communities of Maple Ridge, has not been previously reported. Some implications of this study for further research. The observa-tion of these ken-influenced patterns in this one area leads to the ques-tion of the implications of this phenomenon. The next obvious step in following this idea would be to examine other Japanese Canadian farming 84 communities to see if this ken-tie settlement pattern existed elsewhere. Following from this point, it would be necessary to make a close examination of landownership patterns amongst several Japanese immigrant groups throughout both North and South America, and one must keep in mind that this phenomena was observed in the pre-war period. Subsequent wartime dislocation of the Japanese immigrants in both Canada and the United States disrupted these pre-war settlement patterns. The idea of ken-consciousness becomes very complex and to do true justice to the implications of this concept would require a close examination of the significance of ken loyalties in Japan and how these loyalties became altered in the New World environment. It would be interesting to see if other immigrant groups exhibit a similar persis-tance of regional loyalty expressed in their patterns of settlement in the New World. The war-time evacuation of the Japanese Canadians effectively destroyed the Japanese communities of Maple Ridge. The area ceased to be a berry growing centre. Today it is primarily one of suburban develop-ments and small hobby farms. It is exceedingly difficult to assess what would have become of these Japanese communities had events during the Second World War not destroyed the existing way of life. 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