Finding my roots in Okinawa

My great grandfather, Pepo, was born in Okinawa just around the turn of the 20th century. It was about 20 years after the king of the Ryukyu Kingdom was overthrown by the Japanese government and the Ryukyus were fully incorporated in Japan as the prefecture of Okinawa. Contrary to most people’s belief, Okinawa has its own culture, people, and language distinct from Japan. Pepo left Okinawa in the 1920s to work as a farmer in Cuba. Since I’m interested in genealogy, I’ve tried for years to find out more about Pepo including his parents’ names and more, but out of all my great grandparents, he had eluded me. So when I was in Okinawa, I was determined to hunt more. I only imagined that I’d be able to see the general area Pepo was born in and maybe some details about Okinawan culture, but I was able to find so much more. Continue reading “Finding my roots in Okinawa”