Resource: Utah Nippō Newspaper Online

As with our previous posts on digitized Nikkei newspapers, the digitization of the Utah Nippō is an important contribution to historical resources on the history of Japanese Americans. Hosted by the J. Willard Library at the University of Utah, this newspaper is one of three Japanese newspapers that were allowed to be published during World War II. From the website:

The Yuta Nippō is a Japanese American newspaper published in Salt Lake City, Utah, from 1914 to 1991. It was founded by Issei Uneo Terasawa (1881–1939). Terasawa began the Nippō as a Japanese language daily with a Buddhist orientation, since the existing Japanese language newspaper in Salt Lake City, the Rocky Mountain Times, had a Christian orientation. Building a circulation of over 800 within a year of its 1914 founding, it later acquired and merged with the Times in 1927 and went from a daily to publishing three times a week in 1932. It is notable for being one of just three Japanese American newspapers in the continental United States that published through the World War II years, since it was located outside the West Coast restricted area.

The database itself is easy to navigate, with search options by key term, date, headlines, etc. If you’re not looking for something specific, you can browse all of the issues and narrow the field by year. Clicking on a particular issue brings up the issue plus a sliding frame (seen below) where you can preview all the pages in the issue and navigate to the ones you want.

Since each page is embedded in a PDF format, it’s possible to zoom and manipulate them as you would any other document, as well as download each page for your own research. Pretty great! And while the OCR recognition isn’t perfect, you can, in fact, locate and peruse the OCR text at the bottom of the page as a part of the metadata.

So if this era of history is up your alley, take some time to look through the Utah Nippō!

About Paula

Paula lives in the vortex of graduate life. She studies medieval Japanese history.
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