California Japantown Landmarks Project
Louis Quaintance and Eugene Daub
Unveiled in August 2006, in front of Union Church/Union Center for the Arts. Funded by the California Civil Liberties Public Education Program, and coordinated by the California Japanese American Community Leadership Council's California Japantown Preservation Committee. Made of bronze and stone, 9 feet high, 1000 pounds.
Text from monument: "From the late 1800s Japantowns began to emerge in California's port towns and agricultural areas where Japanese immigrants helped build the state's economy through fishing, farming and other businesses. By the 1930s, as many as forty Japantowns existed throughout the state. The forced evacuation of Japanese Americans during World War II, and later, urban renewal in the 1960s and 1970s, greatly impacted the fate of these unique historic districts. This common landmark resides in three of the remaining japantowns in San Francisco, San Jose, and Los Angeles. It pays tribute to the contributions of Californians of Japanese ancestry and is dedicated to Japantowns that today exist only in memories."
Footsteps lead to destiny, poem by Janice Mirikitani:
We dance honoring ancestors/who claim our home,/and freedom to pursue our dreams./Our voices carve a path for justice:/Equal rights for all./We prevail./Our future harvested from generations./From my life/opens countless lives./The Journey continues...
In 2011, the monument was moved to Toriumi Plaza across the street.