OLD PHOTOS of JAPAN, a photo blog of Japan in the Meiji, Taisho and Showa periods

Old Photos of Japan
shows photos of Japan between the 1860s and 1930s. In 1854, Japan opened its doors to the outside world for the first time in more than 200 years. It set in motion a truly astounding transformation. As fate would have it, photography had just been invented. As the old country vanished and a new one was born, daring photographers took photos. Discover what life was like with their rare and precious photographs of old Japan.
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Felice Beato: A Photographer on the Eastern Road • Anne Lacoste, Fred Ritchin

Felice Beato (1832–1909) lived and worked in Japan from 1863 through 1884, just as the country opened its doors to the world. He was extremely active in Japan, and portrayed the Japanese with dignity and as equals of Westerners. He was the first photographer in Japan to sell albums of his works. Most likely, it was Beato that introduced the later so diligently followed concept of “views” and “types” to photography of Japan.


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1890s • Vegetable Vendor

Vegetable Vendor

Studio portrait of a vegetable vendor. The vendor is wearing a kasa (conical bamboo hat) and a mino (straw raincoat). He carries a pole with baskets filled with vegetables like Japanese radish, lotus roots, Welsh onions, burdocks, onions and carrots.

Peddlers like him were extremely common on the streets of Japan. There were peddlers for virtually everything, from vegetables to medicine to baskets and even furniture. They went from house to house and walked enormous distances, especially in the countryside. Life was extremely hard for these people.

Photographer: Unknown
Publisher: Unknown
Medium: Albumen Print
Image Number 70122-0003

Quote this number when you contact us about licensing this image.
You can also licence this image online: 70122-0003 @ MeijiShowa.com.

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Posted by • 2008-01-02
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