Stuff contributed by nmatsumoto

When samurai walked the streets of New York

Nancy Matsumoto

There is a curious gem of an exhibition on now at the Museum of the City of New York, Samurai in New York. The show tells the story of the first official delegation of Japanese to visit the country in 1860, not long after Commodore Matthew Perry forced the ports …

Friends With Differences: Lange and Adams at the Oakland Museum of California

Nancy Matsumoto

When you are researching a topic, somehow relevant stories seem to appear all around you. So it was with this Wall Street Journal story today, on two photography sections in the newly renovated Oakland Museum of California. One is on the work of photographer Dorothea Lange, and one on Group …

West Coast Nikkei Eldercare: Planning for New and More Diverse Systems of Care

Part II-2: Nikkei Eldercare in San Francisco and San Jose

Nancy Matsumoto

>> Part II-1For those in need of a more intensive level of care than what Kimochi provides, Bay Area seniors can go to Kokoro, a nearby non-profit assisted-living complex that opened in 2003. The facility grew out of a 13-year-long effort by a consortium of church groups, and is headed …

West Coast Nikkei Eldercare: Planning for New and More Diverse Systems of Care

Part II-1: Nikkei Eldercare in San Francisco and San Jose

Nancy Matsumoto

In 1971, a group of San Francisco Sansei began providing Issei seniors with rides and pedestrian escorts to and from their homes, as well as help with government health benefits applications. The non-profit multi-service care organization Kimochi Inc., located in San Francisco’s Japantown, grew out of these early efforts. Around …

Profile: James Mitsumori, one of Keiro Senior HealthCare’s Founding Fathers

Nancy Matsumoto

Although a number of Nikkei and Asian eldercare organizations grew organically out of existing Japanese Issei “Pioneer” or community centers, church, or civic organizations, Keiro Senior HealthCare was different; it rose out of the vision and energy of a close-knit group of Nisei professionals.

West Coast Nikkei Eldercare: Planning for New and More Diverse Systems of Care

Part I - Nikkei Eldercare in Los Angeles

Nancy Matsumoto

My mother is in some ways a typical Southern California Nisei. She has participated in organized Nikkei ballroom dance, camera club, and widow’s groups. She plays marathon card games regularly with a group of Nisei friends, and travels the world on organized Japanese-American tours. A lot of her time also …

Historian Linda Gordon’s new Dorothea Lange bio

Nancy Matsumoto

I attended a fascinating discussion recently at the New York Public Library, featuring NYU history professor Linda Gordon in conversation with New Yorker writer Ian Frazier. The topic of discussion was Gordon’s extensively researched and beautifully written new biography, Dorothea Lange: A Life Beyond Limits (W.W. Norton & Co.).

Reclaiming Photographs of the WWII Japanese-American Resettlement

Nancy Matsumoto

I recently picked up a fascinating book, Lane Ryo Hirabayashi’s, Japanese American Resettlement Through the Lens: Hikaru Carl Iwasaki and the WRA’s Photographic Section, 1943-1945. Hirabayashi teaches in the Asian American Studies Department at UCLA, where he holds an endowed chair dedicated to research on and teaching about the Japanese …

Manzanar Pilgrims Shine Light on Past, Current Injustices, Honor Forebears

Nancy Matsumoto

On a sunny cold day in April, I boarded a bus in Little Tokyo, one of more than 1,500 people to make the 40th annual Manzanar pilgrimage.  Our destination was the remote Owens Valley World War II prison camp where my father and his family were placed behind barbed wire …

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I am a Toronto and New York City-based freelance writer who covers food, agriculture and the environment for publications including The Wall Street Journal, NPR, and Civil Eats. Nancy is the co-author of The Parent’s Guide to Eating Disorders: Supporting Self-Esteem, Healthy Eating & Positive Body Image at Home. She is a 2018 Stone Barns Exchange Fellow and a certified advanced sake professional.Web site:; blog:

Nikkei interests

  • community history
  • family stories
  • festival/matsuri
  • Japanese/Nikkei food
  • Japantowns

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