California Japantowns - Exploring the preservation of history, culture, and community...


Early Japanese students arrived to study at the university in the 1920s. Discriminatory policies created the need for Japanese student housing for the next several decades. By the 1940s, there were 7 student-housing facilities and 2 student clubs. While the early Japanese settled near Shattuck Ave and Channing Way, Japanese businesses soon scattered to commercial areas throughout the city with 12 markets, 9 laundries, 8 cleaners, 6 florists, 5 nurseries, and 6 shoe repairs. For the growing population that reached 1,320 by 1940, 8 churches, 6 Japanese schools, and numerous organizations were established. The Obata Studio, established by renown artist Chiura Obata, along with his wife and son, was recently designated a City of Berkeley landmark. Over 75 pre-war buildings remain and the post-war community continued its growth through the 60s,yet Nikkei history is unknown to most Berkeley residents.


A.V.V. Laundry

2370 Telegraph Ave, Berkeley

Aki, Co

1614 1/2 Russell St, Berkeley


2040 Ashby Ave, Berkeley

Artistic Cleaners

2912 Domingo Ave, Berkeley

Ashby Laundry

2076 Ashby Ave, Berkeley

Barbershop at Parker and Grove

Grove St (now Martin Luther King Jr Way), Berkeley

Berkeley Fellowship

1710 Carleton St, Berkeley

Berkeley Kaikwan

2119 Haste St, Berkeley

Berkeley Open Air Market

2821 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley

Berkeley United Church

McGee Ave and Carleton St, Berkeley

Bertin's Cleaners

2020 Milvia St, Berkeley

Bob's Cyclery

2409 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley

Bud's Bait Shop

1479 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley

Bukkyokai Jichiryo

2119 Channing Way, Berkeley

California Market

2924 Sacramento St, Berkeley

College Cleaners

2942 College Ave, Berkeley

College Florist

2977 College Ave, Berkeley

Dr. H. Uyeyama, Doctor

2808 Martin Luther King Blvd, Berkeley

Dwight Way Cleaners

2560 Martin Luther King Jr Way, Berkeley

East Bay Nursery

2332 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley

Encyclopedia Agent

1547 Parker St, Berkeley

Fujii Nursery Co

1534 Oregon St, Berkeley

Fulton Laundry

2107 Allston Way, Berkeley

General Cleaners

1920 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley

Grove Ashby Pharmacy

3002 Martin Luther King Blvd, Berkeley

Hand Work Laundry

1825 Fairview St, Berkeley

Heishinto Church

1707 Ward St, Berkeley

International House

Piedmont and Bancroft Way, Berkeley

Kami Apartment

1813 University Ave, Berkeley

King Prince Market

1653 Prince St, Berkeley

Kondo Shoe Shop

1938 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley

Kushida, Midwife

1620 Russell St, Berkeley

Kyoto Cleaners

1959 Ashby Ave, Berkeley

Matsumoto, C.

2516 Martin Luther King Blvd, Berkeley