The British in Japan 1853-1865.

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The British in Japan 1853-1865.

Postby Josh&Historyland » 09 Apr 2017 14:23

Fellow members, I'm pleased to share some exciting news. Fonthill has accepted my book proposal on the subject of the British in Japan.

Writing the thing is going to be fun, as some of you know I've been digging into this subject for a few years now. But what will be a challenge is sourcing the images without breaking the bank. To that end I'd like to appeal for help, especially from already published authors as to what to do and how to go about selecting images. Or indeed if anyone who collects Victorian images etc, and has something they would be willing to let me use, I'd be unendingly grateful.

As a basic guideline this subject encompasses:
Lord Elgin's mission to Japan.
Sir Rutherford Alcock's tenure as consul.
Colonel Neale's tenure as acting consul.
The Namamugi Incident.
The bombardment of Kagoshima under Admiral Kuper
The 2nd Bombardment of Shimonoseki. Under Admiral Kuper.
Ernest Satow features prominently
The basic area was covered Photographically by Beato.

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Re: The British in Japan 1853-1865.

Postby bill wright » 15 Apr 2017 15:39


Best of luck with your project ! Every author probably has a different approach to sources for illustrations, some might prefer to use picture agencies (which charge money), others might delve into old books. Obviously, your best and most likely source are the illustrated newspapers of the period, especially the pages of the Illustrated London News, The Graphic and Pictorial World. The ILN has a site you can access but I think the service is not free. On the web you can probably find vols for sale for the ILN 1853-65 usually between £50-£200.
I guess you know George Woodcock`s "The British In The Far East" which has a fabulous colour cover of a British plenipotentiary kneeling before the Emperor of Japan (the book also has some good photos of Yokohama). I had a look at some autobiographies of British sailors and soldiers who were at Kagoshima etc., but so far haven`t turned up any good pix.
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Re: The British in Japan 1853-1865.

Postby Waggoner » 15 Apr 2017 18:54

The ILN is a good source. Original copies can be found in many libraries and you can copy the images from them for free. Don't forget that members of the Military Train formed part of the embassy guard for awhile.

All the best,

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