James Murata oral history interview, part 1 of 5, April 20, 2002


Dublin Core


James Murata was born on August 6, 1920, in San Jose, CA. James' parents were from Shimane-ken, Japan. James' father was a good father but passed away early. Before James' father passed away, he was a hard worker to provide for the family. When he had free time, he would take James and his six siblings fishing, abalone hunting, and to the beaches.

Growing up, James liked playing baseball. There was no radio at home to listen to the baseball games, but there was a phonograph. James' parents would listen to Japanese music, and James liked symphony music.

James' father had to relocate for work a few times before settling in Santa Moreno Valley. Growing up in Santa Moreno Valley, James had many friends at school.

Besides primary school, James attends Japanese Language School to please his parents. The Japanese Language teachers tried to teach the students how to read and write. However, the teachers were not strict. As he got older, James saw himself more as a Japanese American with western traditions due to the environment he grew up in.

James did not feel conflicted between Japanese culture and Western culture. He accepted what the teachers taught him at Japanese Language School. In primary school, he focused on his classwork. At home, his Issei parents taught him Japanese values and obligations. In school, James participated in tennis and football.

On Sundays, James’ family attended Buddhist church. Religion was a big part of his parents’ life. In James' spare time, he would watch feature filmed movies and Japanese movies.



Oral History Item Type Metadata



Date of Birth

1920 Aug 06

Location of Birth

Incarceration Facilities

War or Conflict

Branch of Service

Entrance into Service



Murata, James: narrator, Hawkins, Richard: interviewer, and Go For Broke National Education Center: publisher, “James Murata oral history interview, part 1 of 5, April 20, 2002,” Japanese American Military History Collective, accessed May 18, 2024, https://ndajams.omeka.net/items/show/1052811.