Black and white woolen waistcoat made by I. Sato, a Japanese tailor in South Yarra, Melbourne, circa 1930s. It is part of a three piece suit used by Japanese immigrant Setsutaro Hasegawa circa 1930s-1940s and one of a number of Setsutaro's suits held in the Museum's collection.

Setsutaro Hasegawa migrated to Australia in 1897 at the age of 29. This was just four years before the introduction of the Immigration Restriction Act which virtually banned immigration to Australia from Asia. Setsutaro established a laundry business in Geelong. By 1910 he had married an Australian-born woman and had several children. In 1941 Setsutaro was interned at Tatura as an enemy alien, when he was over 70 years old. He was released at the end of World War II, and unlike most Japanese interns he was not deported. Setsutaro returned to Geelong where he remained for the rest of his life.

Physical Description

Double-breasted waistcoat with a woven black and white woollen front and a black cotton back. There are eight buttons down the front and one button on the inner lining. The waistcoat has four front pockets and a black cotton adjuster on its back, which is fastened with a black metal buckle. It is lined with white cotton with coloured stripes.


The Hasegawa collection enables the exploration of a number of important historical themes relating to migration, working life, and wartime internment in Victoria.

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