The following message was circulated to the Japanese staff by me just a few days prior to my departure for the states. The message to follow mentions the fact that James Thayer, Herbert Passin and I were all leaving PO&SR practically simultaneously. This left the organization without a significant SCAP executive. However Iwao Ishino who was staying on in order to perform a vital public attitude survey in Okinawa at the request of the commanding general was asked by the Chief of CI&E, Colonel Nugent, to become the terminal executive of PO&SR, a duty which he carried out efficiently. Actually, Iwao Ishino also salvaged vital portions of the research files and shipped them to me at Ohio State University where they became the documentation for the "Research in Japanese Social Relations Project"
1. John W. Bennett's Farewell Address to the PO&SR Staff
It is manifestly impossible to say goodbye to each one of you personally, and besides, such prolonged farewells are always embarrassing to all concerned. I want to take this opportunity to say goodbye collectively, and assure you that as I write this, your individual names and faces are in my "mind's eye."
My leaving coincides with the leaving of Mr. Passin and Mr. Thayer, and, for that matter, with the last few weeks of the official existence of our Division. We have all worked together now for a long time-- some of us as long as four years--and in that time we have made friends and professional attachments that are certain to last for the duration of our careers. In my opinion the best thing about our Division has been the fact that we have worked together as equals, as professional people undertaking a task, and what differences in rank and duty have existed among us have been those expectable in any professional organization, and have not been due to the difference between Americans and Japanese.
I feel that on the whole we have all done a good job. I have complained at intervals about tardiness and a few other irregularities, but it should be understood that these things are purely administrative and have no relationship to my impressions and convictions about the quality of work turned out. No, I feel that we have all done a good job, and I am confident that the work of the Division will have considerable influence and importance in the general field of Japanese and Far Eastern studies. One of my jobs from now on is to prepare Division materials for publication outside of the Occupation, to let the professional fraternity know what we have all done. In doing this, I want to make it clear that the contributions of everyone in the office will be always acknowledged in any reports published.
Among you all I have worked most closely with the sociological staff. To those ladies and gentlemen I want to convey my especial thanks and gratitude for their perseverance and fortitude--in the field and in the office. It does without saying that some of our big projects, like the family-household study and the forestry research, could not have even been attempted without the splendid and original professional services you provided. These were really your projects, and I want to say again that your contributions will be most fully and carefully acknowledged. I hope for some joint co-authored publications in both Japanese and American journals. I also intend to keep in touch with you regularly by letter.
And so it is goodbye. But perhaps not forever. With the Bennetts it is "modotte kimasu," not "hikiagemasu." Perhaps in a year, perhaps sooner, we will be back, and we regret very, very much that our present departure will cause us to miss sakura next week! Sayonara.
300. The Bennett Family on Shipboard
The family and I took ship in March of 1951 and arrived in Seattle at the end of the month. Here is a picture of the whole family on board taken by a fellow passenger, with my camera.