The items in this collection are housed in Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections in the Terrell Library.
View the guide to Photograph Collection 156: The Hubert Adams Scrapbook of Taiwan under Japanese Occupation
Background on the Scrapbook's Historical Context
On May 8, 1895, Taiwan was ceded to Japan by China in the Treaty of Shimonoseki, which ended the first Sino-Japanese War. Taiwan would remain under Japanese rule until 1945, as the Empire of Japan collapsed during World War II.
In 1935, Japan commemorated 40 years of Japanese rule in Taiwan celebrating the technological and industrial development during their rule. Patterned on previous such expositions, the 1935 Taiwan Exposition presented an optimistic view of Taiwan’s future in light of the apparent progress brought about by the island’s modernization. The exposition also included anthropological exhibits, including those featuring indigenous residents of the island.
It was in this milieu that these photographs were taken. Several photographs feature economic activities in Taiwan, such as lumbering, fishing, and the refinement of sugar. It also includes public works that contributed to its commercial infrastructure such as Jana Dazhen Dam and Eluanbi Lighthouse (also known as Oluanpi Lighthouse). In addition, several photographs include visits to Shinto shrines (a result of Japanese rule) and aboriginal villages.
Unfortunately, the man pictured in many of these photographs (right) is unidentified. It would seem that this scrapbook is a memento of his travels in Taiwan in 1935. Years later the scrapbook was acquired by Hubert Adams while serving in China during World War II as a member of the American army. The scrapbook was donated to Washington State University in 2014 by Adams’ daughter, Erin Chowning.
Steven Bingo supervised the digitization of the Hubert Adams Scrapbook of Taiwan under Japanese Occupation, while Sophia Handel scanned the pages and processed the digital images. With the exception of the first page, each scrapbook page contains two photographs. For the sake of clarity, each photograph was cropped and given its own page in CONTENTdm. Scans of entire scrapbook page are available upon request.