Harry Hayashi Singled Out for Terrible Injustice
May 14, 1945
Harry Hayashi came from Japan to the United States as a cabin boy on a steamer about the turn of the century. In 1921 he made his way to Carrington, North Dakota, and worked in a bakery. Within a few years he opened his own café and married a local woman. Ambitious and imaginative, he bought several acres of land on the edge of town and opened the Rainbow Gardens. This business became a North Dakota showplace: brightly painted motel units surrounded by a garden with a fish pond, waterfalls, and streams. His adjoining café served a varied menu, and his pavilion attracted nationally known bands and eager dancers. By any standard, the Rainbow Gardens was a huge success.
Then, Hayashi discovered that the government, without warning, had frozen his assets. Within days his business was closed, and he was interned at the Fort Lincoln facility. The efforts of Carrington businesspeople to get him released did no good. How long he was incarcerated is unknown, but he was unable to reopen his Rainbow Gardens until now.
Why Harry Hayashi was singled out from among the several Japanese businesspeople in North Dakota remains a mystery—it also remains a stain on the North Dakota home front.
By Dr. D. Jerome Tweton
Originally published as The North Star Dakotan student newspaper, written by Dr. D. Jerome Tweton and supported by the North Dakota Humanities Council.