photograph of young japanese man wearing work shirt and trousers standing beside large machine
Unidentified man at the Broder Canning Company, Lethbridge or Taber operations, 1945
Galt Museum & Archives 19730234021

“I find the 50s, beginning with the enfranchisement in 1949, a decade of enlarging possibilities for Japanese Canadians. The popular climate had changed.”

Ted Aoki

When Japanese Canadians were once again granted freedom of movement and the opportunity to own property after World War II, a great number left the beet farms and sought to work and to buy property.

During the evacuation, many Nisei had to forgo a high school education. As a result, a number turned to the trades or to agriculture after the war. The Nisei turned to farming potatoes, beets, and corn, and to producing livestock.

After World War II, the Nisei were allowed to move into communities such as Lethbridge. There they established businesses while others sought to work in trades, such as carpentry, gardening or painting. Some worked as labourers at companies like the Broder Canning Company, and some found work as domestics in hospitals and homes.

For those fortunate enough to have attended high school during the evacuation, they pursued higher education and entered into occupations such as nursing and teaching.