Name and location of repository
Level of description
Yasui Brothers business records
- 1908 - 1942 (Creation)
- 1904 - 1990 (Creation)
Total Collection Extent: 204.88 cubic feet; 126 record cartons; 6 document cases; 1 slim document case; 7 flat boxes; 47 oversize flat boxes; 2 card file boxes; 8 oversize folders
Name of creator
Name of creator
Content and structure elements
Scope and content
The Yasui Brothers records primarily document the business, personal, and community-related activities of the Yasui family in Hood River, Oregon, from the start of the 20th century until World War II, when they were among the more than 120,000 Japanese Americans incarcerated by the U.S. government.
The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence and records relating to the business activities of Masuo Yasui (1886-1957). These include the general store, Yasui Bros., that he ran with his brother Renichi Fujimoto; and orchards in the Hood River Valley and surrounding areas that the firm operated. Store records include a variety of advertising materials, while farming records include packing lists, crop reports, and records of local farming associations Masuo Yasui was involved with. The collection also reflects Yasui’s involvement in the local community, including his work assisting other Japanese immigrants to the United States. A small quantity of materials relates to the Yasui Bros. store’s forced closure and the management of the family’s property and assets while they were incarcerated during World War II.
The collection also includes personal papers of Masuo Yasui; his wife, Shidzuyo Yasui; his brother Renichi Fujimoto; and his children. These consist of correspondence, ephemera, and a personal history that Masuo Yasui wrote at the request of the Japanese consulate. Other materials in the collection include records from the 1970s and 1980s of the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL), in which Masuo Yasui’s son Homer Yasui and his wife, Miyuki Yasui, were active, and magazines and newspapers the family received in both Japanese and English.
A substantial amount of this collection is in a pre-World War II Japanese script that is distinct from modern Japanese. Some of these materials, particularly those in Series 1 (Business correspondence and related materials) and Series 6 (Personal papers) have been reviewed and summarized by translators. Selected documents have been translated into English and modern Japanese.
System of arrangement
Conditions of access and use elements
Conditions governing access
Collection is open for research.
Conditions governing reproduction
Copyright for original collection materials is held by the Yasui family. Items are made available under the following statement: In Copyright – Non-Commercial Use Permitted http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC-NC/1.0/
Translations are made available under the following license: Creative Commons - Attribution, Non-Commercial, ShareAlike (BY-NC-SA) http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/
Languages of the material
Scripts of the material
Language and script notes
A substantial amount of this collection is in a pre-World War II Japanese script that is distinct from modern Japanese. Selected documents have been translated, in whole or in part, into English and modern Japanese.
Acquisition and appraisal elements
Immediate source of acquisition
Gift of Homer Yasui on behalf of the Yasui family, December 1991 (Lib. Acc. 20531).
Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information
Related materials elements
Existence and location of originals
Existence and location of copies
Related archival materials
Additional collections at the Oregon Historical Society Research Library relating to the Yasui family include: the Yasui family papers, Coll 949; Masuo Yasui letter to Sagoro Asai, Coll 956; Bernard B. Kliks papers relating to Minoru Yasui and University of Oregon Law School reunions, Coll 920; oral history interviews with Randall B. Kester, SR1278 (1992) and SR 11093 (2005); and an interview with Homer Yasui and Jeff Uecker on Hotline/Golden Hours, SR 0946 (1992).
Collections relating to the the Yasui family that are held at other libraries include: R. Sims Collection on Minidoka and Japanese Americans, Mss 356, Boise State University Library Special Collections; interview with Japanese Americans in Utah, ACCN 1209, University of Utah Library Special Collections; Mike M. Masaoka papers, Mss 0656, University of Utah Library Special Collections; the Gordon K. Hirabayashi papers, Coll 3159, University of Washington Libraries Special Collections; and the Minoru Yasui papers, Archives and Special Collections, Auraria Library, Denver, Colorado.
More than 900 photographs of the Yasui family and store are available online in the Densho digital repository, https://ddr.densho.org/ddr-densho-259/
Preferred citation: Yasui Brothers business records, Mss 2949, Oregon Historical Society Research Library.
Translations for these collection materials is made possible through the work of our project translators Yoko Gulde, Naomi Diffely, and Mami Kikuchi, with assistance from volunteers Chizuko Suzuki, Masahisa Suzuki, Yoichiro Watanabe, and Atsuko Richards.
Description control element
Rules or conventions
Finding aid based on DACS (Describing Archives: A Content Standard), 2nd Edition.