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

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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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Unbeaten Tracks in Japan • Isabella L. Bird
Unbeaten Tracks in Japan

In 1878, just 19 years after Japan opened it first ports to the world, and a mere ten years after the fall of the Tokugawa Shogunate, an adventurous 47-year old woman from the UK set out to explore the interior of Japan. The country was virtually unknown to Westerners, and a woman traveling only with a guide seemed outrageous. Everybody advised her not to, but she went anyway and wrote this unique and vivid journal of what she saw and experienced.


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1890s • Japanese Women Cooking

Women Cooking

In this dramatized studio photograph of five women, the photographer has attempted to show how Japanese meals were prepared in late 19th century Japan. They are surrounded by a variety of traditional Japanese kitchen tools.

The woman on the left is grinding sesame seeds or mashing miso in an earthenware suribachi (すり鉢, mortar). The woman standing next to her is holding a kettle for boiling water.

The woman in the middle is slicing daikon on a wooden mainata (まな板) cutting board. The woman next to her is apparently fanning a coal fire in a hibachi (火鉢), heating a pot of tea. The woman standing on the right is carrying a teoke (手桶), a wooden bucket with a handle.

Two women are wearing hokkaburi (頬っ被り) headwear. Japanese hairstyles were extremely elaborate and contained a lot of wax. Housewives and working women used the hokkaburi to protect their hair from dust and dirt while working. Usually tenugui (手拭い) were used.

Photographer: Unknown
Publisher: Unknown
Medium: Albumen Print
Image Number 80129-0049

Quote this number when you contact us about licensing this image.
You can also licence this image online: 80129-0049 @ MeijiShowa.com.

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Reference for Citations

Duits, K. (2018, September 17). 1890s • Japanese Women Cooking, Old Photos of Japan. Retrieved on 2021, Sep 28 from https://www.oldphotosjapan.com/photos/706/japanese-women-cooking

Posted by • 2018-09-17
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