Viewing page 11 of 31

This transcription has been completed. Contact us with corrections.


October 22, 1942

Professor Chiura Obata
Block 5, Building 9, Apartment D
Utah Relocation Center
Topaz, Utah

My dear Professor Obata:

Mrs Bellaquist and I were highly pleased to receive your letter some two weeks ago. I regret that I did not have an opportunity to see you before you were moved to Utah, but the spring and summer found me completely occupied. I was in Washington for some weeks on a government mission, and have been teaching straight through the various summer terms, besides doing considerable work on the outside of [[strikethrough]] the [[/strikethrough]] semi official nature. Not having come down to Tanforan, however, is no indication that I have not continued to be interested in the sad fate of so many of our good people. Through my activities with the National Students Relocation Council, as well as in other ways, I have attended to developments as closely as possible, and assure you that my general attitude on the whole matter has not been altered, but only the more strongly confirmed by the evidence that has come to me.

From your description of Topaz, I judge that it is by no means filled with the streams and mountains you love so much. I had hoped that somewhere, somehow, you might find yourself where occasionally some very lively trout would be available to you. Perhaps the coloring of the desert and of the sky will be sufficient at least to give you some inspiration for interesting and productive work, both for yourself and the students who are fortunate to have such close contact with you.

Your beautiful painting still adorns the modest living room of our flat, and many times a day we have occasion to remember your free and happy companionship. During the brief week in Yosemite this summer there were many also who in no uncertain terms gave vent to their feelings because of what had happened making it impossible for you and Mrs Obata to be present.

Here the fall term has just opened with an enrollment of something more than ten thousand. With the contemplated lowering of draft age and the increasing attention on purely technical studies, however, one hears all kinds of rumors as to what the University will be by next spring, if indeed it will be at all. We trust that at least some balance may be kept with regard to this as well as other things and that what will happen when its all over is sufficiently kept in mind so that the country will have something besides engineers and scientists for the tremendous tasks which will face us.