Monument & Database of Names

Monument • June 22, 2023

From left: Maureen Bird, Stewart Arneil, Michael Abe, Martin Holmes Susanne Tabata, Natsuki Abe, Aya Timmer. On screen clockwise from top left: Megan Koyanagi, Sakura Taji, Kikuye Inouye, Stacey Inouye.

Exciting progress is being made by the JC Monument Database team lead by University of Victoria’s Michael Abe who is developing the list of names of coastal living JCs, disambiguating 14,500 case files digitized through Landscapes of Injustice, plus researching 30 other lists. The team is making great progress and is now in Ottawa, working through additional Redress Secretariat case files. 

The final list of names will be preserved permanently on a monument legacy wall in a location near the BC Legislature in Victoria. They will be grouped by areas of origin – the places where families were forcibly removed from – and listed in alphabetical order. 

JC Legacy Monument Database Update 

by Michael Abe

The Legacy Monument Database project has made excellent progress in its first several months. 

The project consists of myself as project director, advisory board members Linda Kawamoto Reid, Lisa Uyeda, David Mitsui, Jan Nobuto and Kaz Shikaze and the research team. Providing technical support at the Humanities Computing and Media Centre (HCMC) at the University of Victoria is programming consultant Stewart Arneil and programmer Martin Holmes. 

We are fortunate to have a dedicated team of researchers. Our core team consists of Stacey Inouye, Kikuye Inouye, Maureen Bird, Natsuki Abe, Aya Timmer, Megan Koyanagi and Sakura Taji, pictured in the team photo. In addition we also had Yukari Peerless, Miyuki Hatogai, Don and Mieko Fedrau from a previous cohort and now a new cohort that includes Kimi Chalmers, Lindy Marks, Alexis Moore, Skye Rohani, and Rachel Kobayakawa. It’s wonderful to engage so many members of the community who connect so closely to this work. 

The researchers have worked tirelessly on correcting and disambiguating names from the custodian case files and incorporating information from 30 other lists to get to our next phase, community consultation. 

Community consultation 

As project director, I will soon begin travelling to JC communities across Canada to introduce the monument project and share how the community can help ensure the names and place of origin are correct. 

Look for our booth at Powell Street Festival, August 5 and 6, 2023 and at other community outreach events. 

In the meantime, starting June 1, we invite JC members to look at the working site for the naming project.

This link is a working site with the purpose of offering members of the Japanese Canadian community our current list of names of people forcibly uprooted from coastal BC to outside the 100 mile “protected” zone. 

We are aware that the list contains duplicates, errors and omissions that we are striving to resolve. We invite you to review and confirm the details of your family members to assist us in refining and producing as accurate a list as possible.  

The final list of names will be preserved permanently on a monument legacy wall in alphabetical order arranged in areas of origin from where they were forcibly displaced. Please note that the website offers the names in various forms, a complete list in alphabetical order (Everyone) and by place of residence at the time of uprooting (Place of Origin)  

Correcting this information is the most important priority for us. 

We also offer the names in the place (usually the first place) where they were uprooted to and loosely, in families. This additional information is included to assist people in finding their relatives and will not appear on the monument wall. 

A supplementary section of the monument is being considered to present names on the wall of children born to families after the uprooting and until the restrictions were lifted on March 31, 1949. 

We welcome 

• name submissions of people’s full names and location at time of uprooting

• corrections to this list

• name submissions of people born from 1943 to March 31, 1949 for consideration of inclusion on the wall. Please refrain from submitting nicknames. 

Please send input and correspondence to Michael Abe, Project Director, at
between June 1 and September 30, 2023 

Japanese Canadian Legacies are initiatives that honour our elders past and present. We are grateful to be doing this work on the ancestral lands of the Coast Salish peoples.