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Ketchikan in Ketchikan Gateway Borough, Alaska — Northwest (North America)
 

Tatsuda's Grocery

Circa 1916

— Ketchikan's longest running family business, almost a century old. —

 
 
Tatsuda's Grocery Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, September 4, 2021
1. Tatsuda's Grocery Marker
Inscription.  
Kichirobei (“Jimmy”) Tatsuda and his wife, Sen Seike, started a combination grocery store, pool hall, tobacco shop and boarding house in 1910.

In 1916, the Tatsudas opened their first grocery store in a nearby building. It was truly a family business with all five Tatsuda children working alongside their parents.

After Pearl Harbor, the Tatsuda family, like most people of Japanese ancestry, were sent to internment camps. At the same time, three Tatsuda sons — Charley, Bill, and Jimmy, Jr. — served in the US Armed Forces as decorated soldiers! The Tatsudas returned and reopened their business after the war.

In 1947, the store was damaged by fire and the Tatsudas reopened in this building. After a second fire in 1972, the family built a new, modern supermarket down the street where it stands today. Now, the 3rd and 4th Tatsuda generations (Bill, Jr. and his daughter, Katherine) continue to operate this cornerstone neighborhood business.

Captions (top to bottom)
• Tatsuda's grocery storefront, 1950s.
• Jimmy Tatsuda with delivery truck, 1930s.
• Jimmy & sons Jimmy, Jr. and
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Bill, 1948.
 
Erected by Ketchikan Historic Commission.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Asian AmericansIndustry & CommerceWar, World II. A significant historical year for this entry is 1910.
 
Location. 55° 20.421′ N, 131° 38.363′ W. Marker is in Ketchikan, Alaska, in Ketchikan Gateway Borough. Marker is at the intersection of Stedman Street and Thomas Street, on the right when traveling north on Stedman Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 339 Stedman Street, Ketchikan AK 99901, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Diaz Café (a few steps from this marker); Ohashi's (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Stedman-Thomas Historic District (about 400 feet away); The Lost Frontier (about 400 feet away); New York Hotel & Café (about 400 feet away); June's Café (about 500 feet away); Creek Street (about 500 feet away); Dolly's House (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ketchikan.
 
Regarding Tatsuda's Grocery. A rockslide substantially damaged the grocery store in February 2020 but it remained open as the coronavirus pandemic took root, selling paper towels, toilet paper and other salvaged dry goods from an office turned makeshift store. However, it permanently
Tatsuda's Grocery Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, September 4, 2021
2. Tatsuda's Grocery Marker
closed in June 2020.
 
Also see . . .
1. Celebrating the Legacy of Tatsuda's IGA. By Ashley M. Page for Independent Grocers Alliance (IGA), posted October 22, 2020. (Submitted on September 18, 2021, by Duane and Tracy Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.) 

2. Tatsuda's grocery celebrates centennial. By Dave Kiffer in Stories in the News (an online news site), posted May 19, 2016. (Submitted on September 18, 2021, by Duane and Tracy Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.) 
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 24, 2021. It was originally submitted on September 17, 2021, by Duane and Tracy Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 354 times since then and 8 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on September 17, 2021, by Duane and Tracy Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

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Feb. 25, 2024