Biography / Administrative History
Scope and Content of Collection
Title: Tigers Youth Club records
Bulk Dates: (bulk 1970-1979)
Collection number: 2001.203.1
Kawahara, Daniel, 1919-
2 linear ft.
Japanese American National Museum (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Los Angeles, California 90012
Abstract: This collection was created by Daniel Kawahara. Kawahara was instrumental in founding the Tigers Youth Club, a Japanese American
sports league started in Southern California in 1957 and still active as of 2011. This collection contains photographs, a
scrapbook, and textual records documenting the history of the Tigers and their founding organization, the Has Beens. The
bulk of the collection is made up of minutes from Has Beens meetings, programs from Tigers sports tournaments, and of photographs
of Tigers teams.
Physical location: Japanese American National Museum
369 East First Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012
By appointment only.
Contact the Hirasaki National Resource Center by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) or telephone (213.830.5680)
All requests for permission to publish, reproduce, or quote from materials in this collection must be submitted to the Hirasaki
National Resource Center at the Japanese American National Museum (email@example.com).
[Identification of item], Tigers Youth Club records. 2001.203.1, Japanese American National Museum. Los Angeles, CA.
Biography / Administrative History
Daniel Kawahara was born in Hawaii in 1919. In the early 1930's, he moved to the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles
with his family. Before World War II, he was an active participant in the Cougars, an American sports club which met at Evergreen
Playground in Los Angeles. Kawahara returned to Southern California after World War II and in 1953 formed a softball team
called the "Has Beens" with a group of friends. Kawahara, who was the secretary, recorded the minutes at their meetings.
The Has Beens played baseball and basketball as members of the Japanese Athletic Union-later renamed the Nisei Athletic Union-and
formed the Tigers Youth Club in 1957 to provide their children with competitive athletic opportunities.
The Tigers Youth Club began with one baseball team of boys, ages 7 to 12. They accepted anyone who was interested in playing,
regardless of skill, and provided financial assistance in the form of equipment, uniforms and league and tournament fees.
From one baseball team, the Tigers grew to include several baseball and basketball teams. In 1962, a girl's program was started;
later, men's and women's teams were entered into existing leagues.
In 1967, the Tigers organized a basketball tournament against San Jose Community Youth Service (CYS); the San Jose CYS Tournament
was held annually through 1981. In 1976, the Tigers held the first Scholarship Invitational Basketball Tournament to raise
money for deserving Tigers who were high school seniors wanting to pursue higher education. This annual tournament, renamed
simply the Tigers Tournament, continues to this day. In 1978, the Tigers Youth Club was incorporated as a nonprofit organization
in the state of California. As of 2011, the Tigers Youth Club includes over 50 youth and adult teams in Los Angeles, Orange,
and Ventura Counties.
Scope and Content of Collection
This collection-which includes bills, a booklet, correspondence, a leaflet, minutes, news clippings, photographs, a scrapbook,
and sports tournament programs-documents the activities of the Has Beens and the Tigers Youth Club. It reveals the breadth
of the organization of and participation in grassroots-level sports activities in post-war Japanese American communities in
The original order of the collection has been maintained with the exception of Tigers Youth Club Subseries 2; most materials
are grouped by format, then by chronology.
The Has Beens series is arranged into five subseries.
Subseries 1: Bills, 1958-1959 (1 folder)
This subseries consists of invoices from Has Beens purchases. The bulk of this subseries is invoices from purchases of equipment
for Tigers Youth Club teams. Many of the receipts are from municipal Departments of Parks and Recreation and from the Rafu
Subseries 2: Correspondence, 1957-1972 (1 folder)
This subseries consists of cards acknowledging condolence letters sent by the Has Beens. It also contains a booklet of postage
Subseries 3: Minutes, 1956-1968, bulk 1957-1964 (3 folders and 1 item)
This subseries contains handwritten and typed minutes from Has Beens meetings, detailing fundraising efforts and other activities
related to their involvement with the Tigers Youth Club. It also contains Kawahara's handwritten notes, a news clipping and
correspondence. Correspondence is primarily thank you letters from coaches and managers of teams that received funding from
the Has Beens. Minutes from the first meeting of the Board of Directors of the Has Beens after incorporation, held in June
1956, are located in a minutes binder.
Subseries 4: Photographs, undated (1 folder)
This subseries contains a black and white photograph of a group of men and a black and white photograph with the corresponding
negative of a men's baseball team.
Subseries 5: Miscellaneous Documents, 1956-1961, (1 folder and 1 item)
This subseries contains correspondence and other documents. It includes a roster of Has Beens members, copies of the articles
of incorporation and the by-laws of the Has Beens, and the endorsed articles of incorporation filed with the California Secretary
of State. The subseries also includes a framed Has Beens, Inc. membership certificate for Daniel Kawahara.
The Tigers Youth Club series is arranged into four subseries.
Subseries 1: Photographs, approximately 1957-1979 (6 folders)
This subseries primarily consists of color and black-and-white photographs of Tigers teams in their uniforms. It also contains
photographs of games and social events, including a series of photographs of the Algonquins (a baseball team started by Has
Beens member Yukio Yamauchi) and the Valiants (a baseball and basketball team started by Has Beens member Hiro Taniyama) boys
clubs at a dance. Some photographs are backed with card stock.
Subseries 2: Programs, 1967-1999 (25 folders)
This subseries consists of programs from various baseball and basketball tournaments played by Tigers teams and by Tigers
founding members. It includes programs from the Annual Nisei AA Baseball Championship Tournament, the Jeffrey Yamashita Memorial
Baseball Tournament, the Annual State Nisei Athletic Union Aye Championships, the Drakes Invitational, the Montebello Asian
Sports Association Annual Invitational Basketball Tournament, the Gardena F.O.R. Jr. Sports Association Annual F.O.R. Basketball
Tournament, the Yamasa Kamaboko Tournament, the Annual San Jose CYS Tournament, and the Annual Tigers Scholarship Invitational
Basketball Tournament. The bulk of the series is composed of programs from these last two events. The series also contains
a leaflet and news clippings about these tournaments and correspondence. Within this series, programs are grouped by event
and arranged chronologically.
Suberies 3: Scrapbook, 1959-1963 (1 folder)
This subseries consists of a scrapbook created by Tigers members and given to Daniel Kawahara. The scrapbook contains team
photographs, a certificate, and a news clipping.
Suberies 4: Miscellaneous Documents, 1957, approximately 1988-1990 (1 item)
This subseries contains correspondence and a booklet which document the first year of the Tigers Youth Club, the responsibilities
of Tigers members and their parents, and a dinner held in honor of the Tigers Youth Club founders.
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in
the library's online public access catalog.
Tigers Youth Club
Has Beens (Athletic club)