Towing sailboats to the fishing ground

Nikkei (neek-kay)

Japanese term meaning ‘of Japanese descent,’ referring to Japanese immigrants and their descendants.


A large fishing net that hangs vertically in the water by attaching weights along the bottom edge and wood floats along the top.

Facing Racism


By far the largest group of Nikkei worked as fishermen, with great success. They were skillful, hardworking and innovative at boatbuilding and design. When the lucrative salmon seine fishery was closed to Nikkei, they fought and won legal battles to continue fishing, developing new techniques for other fisheries in the margins of the industry.


Towing sailboats to the fishing ground, Catham Sound, Skeena, 1930s. Japanese Canadian National Museum.