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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A Career of Japan: Baron Raimund Von Stillfried and Early Yokohama Photography • Luke Gartlan

A Career of Japan is the first study of one of the major photographers and personalities of nineteenth-century Japan. Baron Raimund von Stillfried was the most important foreign-born photographer of the Meiji era and one of the first globally active photographers of his generation. He played a key role in the international image of Japan and the adoption of photography within Japanese society itself.


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1910s • Woman Combing Hair

Japanese Woman in Kimono Combing Hair

A young Japanese woman in kimono is combing her hair while looking at a small hand mirror. This postcard was published sometime between 1907 and 1918. During the early 20th century, picture postcards of bijin (beautiful women) were extremely popular in Japan (see Woman with Rose)

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Kobe 1910s • Motomachi Itchome

Motomachi Itchome, Kobe

Shops and rickshaws at Motomachi itchome in Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture Japan. The shop with the elephant is Zouki. It was established in 1875 (Meiji 8) by Kihei Sodeoka. Sodeoka was a ronin, a former samurai, from Satsuma.

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1920s • Woman with Parasol

Japanese Woman with Parasol

An almost melancholic image of a young Japanese woman with a traditional Japanese hairstyle holding a paper parasol. During the early 20th century, picture postcards of bijin (beautiful women) were extremely popular in Japan (see Woman with Rose)

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