Oral History Interview with Chiyo Mitori Shimamoto
Nisei female, born on June 20, 1921 in the San Joaquin Delta to a farm family which farmed in Escalon. The nine children provided farm labor and did well in school. They were not allowed to attend social or school functions or invite friends to their home. Upon completing high school, Chiyo attended the Oakland School of Hair Dressing and took her State Board examinations just as war was declared in December 1941. The family was sent to Stockton Assembly Center, then to Rohwer, Arkansas. Chiyo left camp for St. Paul, Minnesota to attend a beauty school refresher course. She shared a home with a world history teacher who introduced her to classical music and progressive politics. She married Frank Shimamoto, in training for the Military Intelligence Service at Fort Snelling, Minnesota. After Frankï¿½s discharge the Shimamotos moved to Lodi and grew strawberries and grapes. In 1962, while Frank farmed, Chiyo started her own business: Chiyoï¿½s Hairstyling. Under her management the business grew to five full-time employees until retirement in 1983.
Transcript available at California State University, Sacramento University Library
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