Nobuo Yamashita oral history interview, part 1 of 3, October 6, 2001


Dublin Core


Nobuo "Nob" Yamashita is born September 28, 1920, in Los Angeles, CA. Nob and his family worked on the farm before starting a fresh produce business in Bell.

In 1938, Nob graduates high school. When his younger brother Ace graduates high school a few years later, Ace gives Nob a chance for higher education. However, the war starts.

On December 7, Nob hears the news about Pearl Harbor. Nob says the community of Bell treated his family well. They did not experience any discrimination. In May 1942, Nob and his family go to Manzanar.

At Manzanar, Nob works and plays baseball to pass the time. Later he leaves Manzanar briefly to work on a sugar beet farm in Montana. When he returns to Manzanar, he takes a Military Intelligence Service (MIS) exam and passes.

Nob and ten others from Manzanar go to Camp Savage for six months of training. Nob training focuses on conversational Japanese, Japanese military terms, and kanji. After training, Nob goes overseas to New Guinea.

Nob discusses discrimination in the military and the lack of promotions with Japanese Americans. He recalls Ensign Sherman, an advocate for the MIS. Moreover, Nob describes his experiences with Prisoners of War (POWs) in New Guinea and Luzon, and the Philippines.



Oral History Item Type Metadata


Date of Birth

1920 Sep 28

Location of Birth

Incarceration Facilities

War or Conflict

Branch of Service

Entrance into Service



Yamashita, Nobuo: narrator, Tanaka, Diane: interviewer, and Go For Broke National Education Center: publisher, “Nobuo Yamashita oral history interview, part 1 of 3, October 6, 2001,” Japanese American Military History Collective, accessed March 3, 2024,