[Japanese Ephemera Collection] 「18世紀-19世紀初のハガキ、お土産、年賀状、地図、写真、メニュー、うちわ、など」
19th - 20th century
125 pieces in a black ring binder. Photos, cards, maps etc., 19th - 20th century. Mostly for Western tourists, this collection includes hotel luggage labels and tags in various shapes and sizes; matchbox labels (in English and Japanese); trade cards with ornate designs; three hand-colored album photographs 8” x 10.5”; greeting cards, wine labels, Japanese paper samples with text printed in English; two male silk and paper dolls padded to achieve a 3D affect; a small (10” x 6.5”) color print of a geisha passing two suitors on a grassy path and more.
Notable contents include:
A booklet entitled, “The Inland Sea” has decorated, color wrappers and 28 pps of black and white reproduced photos and English text and was issued jointly by the Japanese Government Railways, Japan Tourist Bureau and Japan Hotel Association. Information on places of interest, industries and travel in the area; prices are given for hotel rooms in cities in Japan, Taiwan (Formosa), Chosen [Korea] and Manchuria, ranging from 8 to 13 yen per night. There are also prices for railway and steamer ship travel and a two-page color map. Some pencil marks.
A full-color map of the Tokaido - the area from Kyoto through Osaka to Tokyo - opens to approx. 45 x 80cm and has b+w reproduced photos and Japanese text describing places of interest along the route.
Machine-embroidered ribbon calendar for 1956 with Mt Fuji, a geisha and 2 pagodas and the name “The Alagon Company” and a New York City address. According to online records, 8 West 40th St is a 22 story skyscraper built in 1913 and located in the garment district of the city. The building was designed by Starrett & van Vleck, a NY architectural firm that specialized in designing department stores.
A small, charming brochure from the Goodspeed’s Book Shop, once a well-known shop in Boston that here advertises, “Modern Japanese Color Prints” with images and English text. Staple-bound, staples are oxidized, interior is detached from covers.
3 pcs from the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Imperial Hotel: a b+w postcard of the rear gardens, a triangular advertisement and a Christmas card with a woodblock print of a temple view with the name of the hotel and the hotel manager, T. Inumaru, printed inside. This is likely Inumaru Tetsuzō 犬丸徹三 (1887-1981), who became deputy manager in 1919 and later became president of the hotel in 1945.
Two color woodblock print and one b+w lithograph print Christmas cards, all printed inside by the senders Mr. and Mrs. R. F. Moss. These likely belonged to American RF Moss who studied civil engineering and later worked 35 yrs in East Asia; 5 years in the Philippines followed by 30 years in Japan from 1910 as a rep of Truscon Steel Co. He was at one time consul for Paraguay in Japan and for 17 years he was the Chairman of the American School in Japan (ASIJ).
A business card for Nippon Goldfish Co, listing an address in San Francisco, mentions its exhibit in the horticulture bldg. at the PPI Expo in SF in 1915.
A luggage tag for Hotel Kawaroku has the handwritten name “Mr. and Mrs. Horsfall.” A Dr. Francis Horsfall (1822-1901) was known to have traveled to Japan with his family, and this may have belonged to him.
A tiny pink booklet from the Kyoto Hotel has the handwritten name of “Mr. G Saches” and gives information for tourists, such as the hiring of a rickshaw or taxi for 1 yen.
A decorated business card advertises, “The Celebrated Glycerine Lotion ‘Sapanule’” that “Cures Rheumatism, Neuralgia, Salt Rheum, Erysipelas, Eczema, Phenomena and all Inflammations,” selling for 25 cents, 50 cents and a dollar per bottle.
A full course menu with a stunning illustration of fireworks over the Sumida River commemorates a visit of the M.S. Tatsuta Maru on Thursday, August 26th, 1937. The Tatsuta Maru has an astonishing history, beginning as an ocean liner in the late 1920s with multiple visits between Yokohama and San Francisco in the 1930s, including one trip with noted passengers Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. Later it carried Jewish refugees to the US West Coast and during the 1940s transported prisoners of war, when it was referred to as the ‘hell ship.” The end came for the ship in early 1943 when it was sunk by a US warship and all passengers and crew of the Tatsu Maru were lost. The menu harks back to happier times, with over 24 items listed on the dinner menu, including “New York Cut Sirloin Steak Renaissance,” “Smoked Ox Tongue,” “Roast Milk Fed Leg of Veal with Rasher Bacon” and desserts of “Parfait au nougat, Parastan Sugar Wafer” and “Orange Jell-O.”.