Set of Small Wooden Carving, Geta

Set of Small Wooden Carving, Geta

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Usage conditions apply
Japanese Americans who were incarcerated during WWII often turned to art and crafts to take their minds off of the imprisonment, and express themselves creatively. Many art schools, clubs, and classes started popping up throughout many of the camps to accommodate and provide for this want. It was a great way for many Japanese Americans to pass much of the large amounts of spare time they had while imprisoned, and many prisoners developed extraordinary artistic skills. This is a tiny wooden carving of geta (Japanese sandals) using red yarn to represent the straps. Geta were an important symbol for Toshi Ito. The floors of the shower rooms were incredibly dirty because that was where they used to store and wash horses before the land was turned into a concentration camp. So, in order to keep their feet clean, Japanese Americans started crafting these geta to wear around camp and in the showers. These tiny geta could have easily been a gift or a small key chain type trinket. These little crafts were made in great volume during incarceration.
Currently not on view
Object Name
wooden carving
wood carving
date made
mid 1940s
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
thread (overall material)
overall: 1/2 in x 1 in; 1.27 cm x 2.54 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
Gift of Toshi Ito
World War II
Japanese American Internment
World War II
See more items in
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Japanese American
Cultures & Communities
Executive Order 9066
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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