Program Three - Segment Two: Picture Brides

In 1900, the plantations were bachelor societies.  Some men married native Hawaiian women.  Wealthier men returned home to find brides.  A 1907 law, The Gentleman’s Agreement, allowed only family members to immigrate.  So many Japanese, Okinawan, and Korean men asked their families to help arrange a marriage across the ocean. 


Gaylord Kubota, Domingo Los Banos, Espy Garcia, Ah Quon McElrath, Barbara Kawakami, Alma Ogata, Fuzzy Alboro, George Fujiwara, May Fujiwara, Jon Arisumi. Moses Pataki, and Richard Nagame.  Scholars Ronald Takaki, Franklin Odo, Bill Puette, William Boylan, Lee Tonouchi, Kent Sakoda and Jeffrey Siegel. Actors Dann Seki, Chisao Hata, Denise Aoki Chinen, and Keith Kashiwada. Hole Hole Bushi songs were sung by Shigeko Miyashiro.

Produced by Robynn Takayama and Dmae Roberts


Hawaii Life Slideshow - See photos of the Plantation Village, the Alexander & Baldwin sugar museum, and historical plantation photos.


Ledward Kaapana, Master Slack Key Guitarist records on the "Rhythm & Roots" Record Label. To purchase his CDs email kahokuproductions@yahoo.com. For more information on the Annual Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festivals (Maui, Molokai, Oahu, Hawaii, Kauai), please visit hawaiianslackkeyguitarfestivals.com or email kahokuproductions@yahoo.com or phone (808) 226-2697. ledkaapana.com

Further Internet Resources:


Chai, Alice Yun “Women’s History in Public: ‘Picture Brides’ of Hawaii.” Women’s Studies Quarterly. 1988: 1&2.

Chan, Sucheng Asian Americans: An Interpretive History. Twayne Publishers, 1991.

Cheng, Luci and Edna Bonacich, Labor Immigration Under Capitalism, Ch. 5, Asian Labor in Hawaii, 1850 – 1900.  University of California Press, 1984.

Ichioka, Yuji The Issei: The World of the First Generation Japanese Immigrants,
. New Press, 1988.

Kimura, Yukiko Issei: Japanese immigrants in Hawaii. University of Hawaii Press, 1988.

Nakano, Mei T. Japanese American Women: Three Generations 1890-1990. Mina Press Publishing and National Japanese American Historical Society, 1990.

Nomura, Gail M. “Issei Working Women in Hawaii.” Making Waves: An Anthology of Writings By and About Asian American Women. Beacon Press, 1989.

Nordyke, Eleanor C. and Matsumoto, Y. Scott “The Japanese in Hawaii: a historical and demographic perspective” The Hawaiian Journal of History Volume 11, 1977.

Sunoo, Sonia Shinn Korean Picture Brides: 1903-1920: A Collection of Oral Histories. Xlibris Corporation, 2002.

Takaki, Ronald Pau Hana: Plantation Life and Labor in Hawaii. University of Hawaii Press, 1983.

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