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"Soldier at the Door, First Congregational Church, Berkeley"
"Soldier at the Door, First Congregational Church, Berkeley"

By Chiura Obata

sumi, 11" x 16"
A soldier guards the door of the church, which served as a local registration center.

On April 21st the orders for the evacuation of the Berkeley Japanese was announced. Nine days later, the Obata family was evacuated with approximately 1,300 other Japanese to the Tanforan Assembly Center.

"We all had tags with our family number. The soldiers were polite to Papa because his papers said he was a university professor. They were respectful and felt badly for us and one said he was very sorry in a low voice."
Haruko Obata, 1986

"Professor Obata is taking the evacuation well. He has a small notebook in which he is sketching the process -- a silhouette of a soldier at the door, a picture of the evacuees getting on the buses with the church tower high above."
War Comes to the Church Door
Chiura Obata
Courtesy of Kimi Kodani Hill
April 25, 1942