Old Asia Photography

Japanese Numbers List

​Souvenir Albums - Numbers List and Attribution Issues​

​Throughout the whole of the Meiji period and beyond, many studios in Japan issued souvenir albums of photographs. Unfortunately, many of these albums did not indicate the name of the studio. It was, therefore, difficult to attribute authorship of the images to either a particular studio or photographer. However, the vast majority of the photographs displayed descriptive captions and numbers on the face of the prints. A small percentage of the albums did indicate the studio - with a title page or the name and address wet-stamped onto the back of the front cover. Starting in the early 1980s, I began to record the captions and numbers of those photographs contained in albums whose studios were identified. I also started to document those albums which were not identified. In those days Japanese souvenir albums were relatively common. Within a few years, I was able to list photographs appearing in several hundreds of albums. Number patterns quickly emerged, and I was able to identify an increasing number of studios. I published the results in my 1996 book Early Japanese Images where some 1,200 photographs were matched with their studios. In 2006 I published an expanded list of 4,000 in Old Japanese Photographs: Collectors’ Data Guide. If you are interested in that list you can CLICK HERE to download the full PDF. These have been further supplemented below. However, many gaps remain and a few studios are yet to be identified. In producing the list below, I would like to encourage anyone with numbers which do not appear to send in a copy so that they may be added. This would help collectors, researchers and photo-historians.
Studio Number Description Comments
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS M62 Carps in Pond, Hakone (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS M88 View of Ochanomizu, Tokyo (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS M95 Shiba Tokio (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS N2 The Garden of Sweat Flag in Horikiri at Tokyo (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS N76 Wooden image at Obakusan, Uji (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS N94 Garden at Hikone, Omi (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS O16 Geisha Girls (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS O20 [3 Young geisha, heads together] (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS O60 Japanese Junk (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS O61 Japanese Junk [see 1503] (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS O73 Nishiura, Enoshima (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P17 Singing Girls (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P26 Singing Girls (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P30 Japanese Dancer (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P31 Singing Girls (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P48 Dancing Party (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P52 Singing Girls (taiko, Tsudzumi, samisen) (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P55 Singing Girls (samisen, Koto, Fuye) (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P56 Geisha Girl at Tok (Oyen, Ponta) (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P58 Singing Girls (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P75 Fuji from Tagonoura (Tokaido) (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS P95 Fuji from Omiya (Tokaido) (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS Q36 Miyako Dance (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS Q60 Saruhashi, Koshu (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS Q61 Saruhashi, Koshu (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS Q76 Drawing Water from the Well (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS Q82 Japanese Lantern Makers (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS Q94 View of Yokohama (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS Q98 Jinrikisha (carriage) (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS Q98 Bund, Yokohama (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R11 Daibutsu, Hiogo (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R34 Motomachi Street, Kobe (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R38 Kobe Club (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R57 View of Evening at Maikonohama (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R58 View of Awajishima from Maikonohama (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R62 Maikonohama (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R72 View of Kobe (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R77 Bund, Kobe (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R84 Garden at Wada Temple, Hiogo (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R85 Garden at wada Temple, Hiogo (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R86 Garden at Wada Temple, Hiogo (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R92 Awajishima (Inland Sea) (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R97 Nunobiki Waterfall, at Kobe (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS R99 Awajishima (Inland Sea) (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS S52 Dancing Party (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS T1 View of Kobe [old number 206 shows] (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS T15 Mino Waterfall, near Kobe (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS T26 Wakanoura, Kishiu (Inland Sea) (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS T36 Garden at Okayama, Bizen (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
UNIDENTIFIED NUMBER GROUPS U20 Singing Girls (B) THE LETTERS GROUP
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