ensoOregon Nikkei Endowment

Japanese American History Museum
A project of Oregon Nikkei Endowment

121 NW 2nd Ave
Portland, OR  97209
(503) 224-1458

Museum hours:
Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Sunday, noon to 3 p.m.

$5 adults, $3 students/seniors
free for Friends of Oregon Nikkei Endowment


Volunteers make the programs happen and the successes we all enjoy. You can bring your passion and personal experiences to our programs and activities. In turn, you'll learn about local Japanese American history, meet new people with fascinating stories, and learn new skills.

If you are interested in volunteering for Oregon Nikkei Endowment (at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center and/or Japanese American Historical Plaza), please call 503-224-1458.

Volunteer Application (pdf)

Be a Docent at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center!

Are you enthusiastic about culture, history, identity, or civil liberties? Do you like working with people? Are you patient and flexible with requests? If so, we would love you to be a part of our Docent Program!

Legacy Center docents interact with the public in a variety of ways, from greeting museum visitors and increasing their interest in the history of the Japanese Americans in our community, to answering phones or selling merchandise in our store. Trained docents can lead group tours and other educational programs. Many people have found this volunteer work rewarding and fun.

We have a particular need for docents on Saturdays and Sundays, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Half-shifts and weekday hours, are also available! Please contact Oregon Nikkei Endowment to learn more or apply:

Phone: 503-224-1458

Positions Available (ongoing)

Docents - Greet visitors or be a guide through the museum exhibits. No prior experience or knowledge necessary!

Saturday and Sunday year-round.

Speakers - Give tours of the museum, the Historical Plaza, and/or go out to local classrooms. The Museum in a Suitcase is also an option for new speakers.

Office - Research files, scan historic photographs and documents, digital image management and/or photography, database work, cataloging, clerical work, etc.

Archive Volunteers - Sort, identify, and catalogue photographs, documents, and artifacts.

Archive committee usually meets on the 2nd Saturday of each month. More frequent opportunities to volunteer are also available. Call ahead if you would like to participate.

Exhibit & Event Volunteers - Help install or take down temporary exhibits; set up for exhibit openings, book signings and other events in our community room; or help with slide show presentations, book sales, clean-up, etc.

Off-site Events - Staff our information booth at public events and fairs. Suggestions on how to update our portable display board with new pictures and captions are welcome.

Student Internships

Interns are welcome in the Collections and Exhibits department of the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center. Scope of work may encompass a broad range of duties, including collections, research, education, or visitor relations. Interns with a specific project in mind are welcome to discuss opportunities.

The intern will gain experience in a small, community based nonprofit museum, and will receive hands on training. Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center maintains historical collections, a library, and research files that as a whole comprise the collections resources for the Center. Materials in the collections document the Japanese American and Issei experience in Oregon and the surrounding region, with an emphasis on events leading up to and during World War II.

Skills and Experience desired: Undergraduate or graduate student enrollment in history, museum studies, Asian American studies, or related fields. Thorough attention to detail, computer skills including typing, familiarity with database concepts, basic knowledge of digital scanning, and ability to keep detailed information records is helpful.

Contact Us

If you have questions or comments, please contact us:

Phone: 503-224-1458


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Current Exhibit

Making Waves:
Portland Taiko's 25th Anniversary

July 18 – August 25, 2019

Making Waves
  Blue Star Museums

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The Legacy Center has a wealth of resources documenting Japanese American history and culture, housing original manuscripts, government documents and publications, as well as historical and contemporary artifacts and photographs.

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