Japanese Consul General at the Bishop Museum

Consul General Yasushi Misawa and Mrs. Misawa visited Dr. Yosihiko Sinoto at the Bishop Museum on May 12. Dr. Sinoto and his colleagues shared with the Misawas an ongoing project: a database of documents and artifacts related to Japanese immigration to Hawai‘i. Among the thousands of artifacts collected by and stored at the museum are guest-house ledgers, kitchen equipment, and household items.

In the following excerpt from the introduction to Curve of the Hook, Eric Komori describes Dr. Sinoto and Bishop Museum’s focus on historic preservation:

When [Kenneth] Emory retired from the Bishop Museum in 1970, Yosi became chair of anthropology. Under his leadership, the department flourished and the museum became an international center for research in the Pacific. A period of rapid development and construction began in Hawai‘i at this time, and Yosi also provided the state with crucial leadership in historic preservation. Immediately after becoming chairman, he issued a public call for stronger preservation laws and educational programs to make residents aware of the need to protect the endangered Hawaiian cultural legacy. Bishop Museum took a leading role in compiling Hawai‘i’s first statewide inventory of historic places, and in 1976 Yosi oversaw the building of the museum’s Immigrant Heritage Preservation Center, where artifacts and documents from early plantation communities could be conserved and studied.

Dr. Sinoto’s wife, Kazuko, was a well-known researcher on Japanese immigration to Hawai‘i. With Franklin Odo, she wrote A Pictorial History of the Japanese in Hawai‘i 1883–1924.