Nisei Attorney Frank Chuman to Speak at JANM


Frank Chuman signed copies of his book at the AACP booth during the JACL National Convention this past weekend at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel. (Photo by J.K. Yamamoto/Rafu Shimpo)

The Downtown Los Angeles Chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League is sponsoring a book-signing by author Frank Chuman on Sunday, July 10, from 1:30 to 4 p.m. at the Japanese American National Museum, 369 E. First St. in Little Tokyo. The event will be held in the Dr. and Mrs. Toshio Inahara Gallery Foyer, located on the second floor.

The book is entitled “Manzanar and Beyond: Memoirs of Frank F. Chuman, Nisei Attorney.” It is published by the Asian American Curriculum Project Inc. ( and funded by the Henri and Tomoye Takahashi Charitable Foundation. The foreword is written by Sen. Daniel Inouye of Hawaii and the introduction by famed Sansei attorney Dale Minami.

“We are very pleased to have Mr. Chuman to return to Little Tokyo to share his life journey,” stated Kitty Sankey, a Downtown JACL vice president.

Born in 1917 in Montecito (near Santa Barbara), Chuman was interned at Manzanar during World War II. He helped other Japanese Americans resettle after their release from the camps.

Chuman served as president of the Downtown JACL in 1946 and went on to become National JACL president from 1960 to 1962. He authored an acclaimed legal history, “Bamboo People: The Law and Japanese Americans” (1976).

In the 1980s, he was part of the legal team led by Minami that filed a writ of coram nobis to clear the name of Fred Korematsu, who resisted being sent to internment camps during World War II and was sent to prison. U.S. District Court Judge Judge Marilyn Hall Patel overturned the conviction.

“He is an icon in the civil rights movement and we are very excited to have the opportunity to meet him,” stated George Kita, president of the Downtown JACL.

For more information, contact the Downtown JACL at (626) 232-0970.



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