[ca.1937-38]. Oblong 4to photograph album, 24 leaves of stiff black paper, with photographs mounted mostly two or more to a page. Approximately 65 of the photographs are portraits of individual cavalrymen, with collar insignia indicating service with the 25th Cavalry Regiment of the 4th Cavalry Brigade, Imperial Japanese Army; the uniforms also show the scalloped pocket flap on the tunic, introduced for all ranks by 1930. The other 30 or so photographs picture the cavalrymen in official and informal settings, on horseback, in groups small and large, with some including background buildings. All of the photographs are clear and sharp, with the exception of two or three that seem to be overexposed. Original embossed cloth, tied. (7176). Item #59398
The 25th Cavalry Regiment, from 1937 until the "outbreak of the China Incident" (a reference to the Second Sino-Japanese War) was based in the city of Toyohashi, in the eastern Aichi Prefecture. One photograph shows the gates to a compound, now part of Aichi University, which had been used in the late 1930s as the army reserve officer school of the 4th Cavalry Brigade. There are also two photographs of what we have identified as the Toyokawa Inari, a Buddhist Temple in the city of Toyokawa, a short distance for Toyohashi. One of those images shows soldiers gathered with their children in front of the temple; it was the custom to go to the shrine with families before going off to war, for good luck. Several of the photographs picture the soldiers who had care of the horses for the troops and another pictures what appears to be a "commissary" with two soldiers sitting stiffly behind a counter, protecting goods which include cans and bottle, plus a few boxes of "breakfast cocoa" (so labeled in English). The more casual photographs include one of a group of Japanese men in both traditional and western dress enjoying a meal; they are posed seated on the floor which is strewn with many dishes of foods and bottles of drink. Another informal photograph pictures eight men, one in uniform, one in traditional dress, the rest in western clothes (four with Panama-style hats) posed with a pair of kewpie dolls (an unauthorized version of the kewpie doll was manufactured in Japan in the 1920s). An excellent photographic look at Japanese military life on the eve of World War II.