Tom Shigetoki Umeda oral history interview, part 3 of 3, June 5, 2008


Dublin Core


Following the Pearl Harbor attack, Shigetoki Tom Umeda does not know what happened to his family in the United States. In Japan, Tom focused on his work at Mitsubishi.

During wartime, Tom worked at Mitsubishi. Tom explained there were no opportunities for Nisei to be an engineer in the United States. To work for Mitsubishi, Tom had to regain his Japanese citizenship. In doing so, he lost his American citizenship.

Tom learned his family was doing ok after Pearl Harbor after receiving a note in a package from his mother. After the war, airmail was allowed between the United States and Japan.

After working at Mitsubishi, Tom worked for a chemical engineering construction company. Later, he received an offer to work for Kenwood. To work in the United States, Tom got his Green Card. For the latter part of Tom's career, he worked for Kenwood in the United States. He retired from Kenwood after ten years. Tom also went to Oak Ridge, the Secret City to discuss atomic energy.

Tom describes the different chapters of his life, from growing up in the United States, working in Japan after college, and returning to the United States to work. Being a Nisei helped him after the war. Japanese companies wanted his ability to speak English and Japanese. Tom also learned the business as a Nisei and as a Japanese. He felt fortunate to be accepted as a Japanese and a Japanese American.



Oral History Item Type Metadata

Date of Birth

1916 Aug 25

Location of Birth

War or Conflict

Entrance into Service



Umeda, Tom Shigetoki: narrator, Yuge, Tim: interviewer, and Go For Broke National Education Center: publisher, “Tom Shigetoki Umeda oral history interview, part 3 of 3, June 5, 2008,” Japanese American Military History Collective, accessed June 13, 2024,