John Y. Arisumi
Interview Robynn Takayama
Transcript created June 8, 2005
:10 My name is John Y. Arisumi and I worked for Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company. I started to work there in 1938 right after grade school. I was paid first job as a summer employment. I worked for my dad in the stable. I was paid $.75/day. And after a couple of months summer was over. I had been making $.75/day so I went to see the field boss. And the field boss said I’m too young to go into field work. I said, “Let me try.” So he let me go into the field. That’s when we started to get $1.50/day.
1:05 WHAT KIND OF WORK DID YOU DO IN THE FIELD
1:14 Well, working in the field to irrigate sugar cane. We called it the cultivation contract. And cane is raised for 18-20 months and then they let it dry to harvest. I went through 2 cycles of that from late 1938-early 1942. It was about 4 year’s crop. And later on, I felt I couldn’t do this kind of work so I went to work in the plantation shop.