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Japanese Imperial Naval Squadron training cruise postcards relating to the 1922-1923 cruise


Held at: University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts [Contact Us]3420 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6206

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

The Training Fleet of the Imperial Japanese Navy, the Renshū Kantai, operated from 1903-1940, with only a brief hiatus during the Russo-Japanese War (1904-1905). Graduates of the Imperial Japanese Naval Academy (Kaigun Heigakkō)—and from 1921 onward, graduates of the Naval Engineering Academy (Kaigun Kikan Gakkō) and the Naval Paymasters Academy (Kaigun Keiri Gakkō)—would spend several months in training deployment largely throughout the Pacific Ocean and beyond, with their near-annual cruises occasionally venturing as far as the Mediterranean Sea or the East Coast of the United States.

The 1922-1923 cruise was commanded by Vice-Admiral Naomi Taniguchi, with three ships, Iwate, Izuomo, and Asama, circumnavigating the globe. The cruise began in Yokosuka, Japan on June 26, 1922, and the ships traveled across the Pacific Ocean and down along the west coast of North America, up through the Panama Canal and around the east coast of South America, making stops in Brazil and Argentina. The ships crossed the southern Atlantic Ocean and around the southern coast of Africa, through the Indian Ocean and back through East Asia, making stops along the way at Colombo, Sri Lanka, Singapore, and Hong Kong, among others. The ships landed at Yokosuka again on February 12, 1923.

Fuller accounts of the 1922-1923 cruise are documented in other sources. The first is a commemorative publication printed by Gahōsha in 1923, entitled Taishō jūichi, jūninen renshū kōkai kinen ("Commemoration of the Training Cruise of Taishō 11-12 [1922-1923]"). This "cruise book" provides portraits of the crew and its commanders, photographic records of the crew's ship life and daily activities in and around their ports-of-call, and a complete crewman manifest of the three ships. The second is Taishō Jūichinendo Renshū Kantai kiji ("An Account of the Taishō 11-12 [1922-1923] Renshū Kantai"), a detailed official and very technical report of the cruise published by the commanders of the Renshū Kantai. Both of these sources list Tōhei Yamamoto's name and affiliations.

This collection consists of picture post cards documenting the 1922-1923 training cruise of the Japanese Imperial Naval Squadron which traveled to Honolulu, Los Angeles, the Panama Canal, Rio de Janeiro (to attend a naval review commemorating the 100th anniversary of Brazil's independence), Buenos Aires, Argentina, Capetown and Durban, South Africa. The training cruise laid over at Colombo, Ceylon, Singapore and Hong Kong, before returning to Yokosuka on February 8, 1923.

The postcards are arranged in the order of the stops on the cruise and include California, Panama, Africa, and India. There are also a few postcards that may not be a part of the this cruise: Australia and what appears to be Switzerland (although all postcards that are presumed to be Switzerland are uncaptioned). Of particular value may be the first postcard in the collection which is a map of the cruise route.

Purchased, 2016.

University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Finding Aid Author
Holly Mengel
Finding Aid Date
2018 August 7
Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research use.

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Copyright restrictions may exist. For most library holdings, the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania do not hold copyright. It is the responsibility of the requester to seek permission from the holder of the copyright to reproduce material from the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Collection Inventory

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Cruise route, circa 1922-1923.
Box 1 Folder 1
California ("A Pepper Tree Driveway in Southern California," "Oranges and Snow Capped Mountains, California," "The Coast towards White's Landing, San Pedro, California," and Nielson Theatre), circa 1922-1923.
Box 1 Folder 2
Panama (Bolivar Street, Colon), circa 1922-1923.
Box 1 Folder 3
Africa ("Ricksha Boys, South Arica," "In a Zulu Kraal," and "Ricksha Boy"), circa 1922-1923.
Box 1 Folder 4
India ("Military Prison, Trimulgherry," "La Martiniere, Lucknow," "Hossainabad Gate, Lucknow," "Hooseinabad Emambara, Lucknow," "British Infantry Line, Mhow," "Postman," "Taj Mahal, Agra," "Burning Ghat, Benares," and "James Bazaar Street, Secunderabad"), circa 1922-1923.
Box 1 Folder 5
Australia ("The Observatory, Wickham Terrace, Brisbane, Queensland"), circa 1922-1923.
Box 1 Folder 5
Uncaptioned postcards (location not identified, but presumed to be Switzerland), largely mountain scenes with trains, boats, and villages, circa 1922-1923.
Box 1 Folder 6

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