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Takahashi Family Papers

Identifier: SPC-2020-013

Scope and Contents

The Takahashi Family Papers (1942-2013, bulk 1942-1969) contain digitized material from the Takahashi family. Included are letters from immediate family members pre and post-World War II. Most of the letters from after World War II were written by Florence (Takahashi) Griffen while she was in New York and after she joined the Peace Corps with her husband and moved to Bangkok, Thailand. There are also two copies of transcripted letters to Albert Takeshi Takahashi during World War II and from Florence while she was in Syracuse, New York. Besides the letters, there are also get-well cards and handmade cards from the Poston incarceration camp.

The collection also contains individual material that relates to Florence, her sister Dorothy, and her mother Yae. The newspaper clippings, handwritten notes, journal entries, and other material related to Florene are associated with her career, the Peace Corps, and her work in general. Material that correlates with Dorothy (Takahashi) Treakle, are report cards from primary, secondary, high school, and college. The material related to Yae Takahashi is her artwork from the Poston incarceration camp.

The individual photographs and family photo album include images of pre and post-World War II. The family photo album contains images from the Poston incarceration camp, Robert and Florence (Takahashi) Griffen's wedding, pre-World War II photographs of family, and post-World War II photographs of George Yoshizumi and Yae Takahashi's grandchildren. The individual photographs are of Albert Takahashi and a school photograph most likely from the Poston incarceration camp.


  • 1942-2013
  • Majority of material found within 1942-1969

Conditions Governing Access

There are no access restrictions on this collection.

Conditions Governing Use

All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Director of Archives and Special Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical materials and not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

Takahashi Family Biography

Yoshizumi George Takahashi (1879-1959) was an Issei (first-generation Japanese American) who immigrated to the United States in 1907 from Tokyo Prefecture, Japan. He settled in Dinuba, Tulare County, California, where he worked as a vineyard and truck farmer. He later married Yaeko "Yae" Kawakami (1889-1975) in the same year she immigrated to the U.S. also from Tokyo Prefecture, Japan in 1914. They had seven children they named Frank Isao (1915-1986), Rose "Rosie" Fukiko (1917-2007), Albert Takeshi (1918-2017), Howard Akira (1920-2006), Florence Sumire (1923-2018), Dorothy Yuriko (1927-), and Margaret Yukiko (1929-). The family was incarcerated at Poston incarceration camp in Parker, Arizona for three years during World War II before being released. Two of George and Yae’s sons, Albert and Howard, enlisted for military service as privates. George and Yae continued farming in Spanish Fork, Utah before moving once more and settling in Los Angeles, California.

Florence was employed as a nurse at Willard State Psychiatric Hospital in Syracuse, New York in 1945 before taking other nursing positions in Salt Lake City, Utah in 1947 and Los Angeles from 1948 until 1949. She married Robert "Bob" Griffen in 1956 and had one daughter. Robert and Florence joined the Peace Corps and were able to work and teach internationally in Ecuador and Bangkok, Thailand. They eventually returned to the United States and moved to Honolulu, Hawai'i in 1967 before Florence herself returned to Los Angeles sometime in the 1970s or 1980’s.


523 Megabytes (<emph render="italic">219 pdf files, 217 jpeg files</emph>)

Language of Materials




The Takahashi Family Papers comprise of photographs from a family photo album, correspondence between the immediate Takahashi family, correspondence between Florence Griffen and her mother-in-law, Lois Griffen, transcripts of the correspondence, Yae Takahashi's original artwork, Dorothy Treakle's school report cards, Florence's short autobiography, newspaper clippings, church and Peace Corps papers, Poston incarceration camp Christmas cards, and more. All of this collection has been digitized and some of the material is available online.


This collection is arranged in six series: Correspondence, Yae Takahashi, Florence (Takahashi) Griffen, Dorothy (Takahashi) Treakle, Takahashi family photo album and individual photographs, and Other material related to incarceration camps.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

The access files are PDF and JPG files stored on the Public Use Drive. Access to the files is available on-site in the Gerth Archives and Special Collections reading room. Please request copies at the reference desk.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The Takahashi Family Papers was loaned to the Gerth Archives and Special Collections in 2020 by Margaret Zumwinkle. A second accession was added in 2021. The entire collection was returned in 2021.

Existence and Location of Originals

Donor retained original material.

Availability of Digitalized Material

Some of the collection has been digitized and is available at the CSU Japanese American Project site: Takahashi Family Papers

Related Materials

This collection is part of the California State University Japanese American Digitization Project. For related materials please consult: CSU Japanese American Digitization Project.

Processing Information for Digitized Material

The Gerth Archives and Special Collections created digital reproductions from the original material for long-term preservation and access. These preservation files (47.1 gb, 956 tif files) were scanned to and stored on the Gerth Archives and Special Collections Deparment Drive. For more information on the best practices and standards for the digitization process, please see: CSU Japanese American Digitization Project technical reference guide.

Inventory of the Takahashi Family Papers
Lindsay Anderson
April 16, 2020
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • October 12, 2021 : Revision included updating container list, adding a digital link to digitized collection, and revising the Scope and Content note. Jennifer Hill

Repository Details

Part of the California State University Dominguez Hills, Gerth Archives and Special Collections Repository

University Library South -5039 (Fifth Floor)
1000 E. Victoria St.
Carson CA 90747