Heijo Photo Collection

We pass along this amazing collection of 26 digitally preserved photographs taken in Heijo (now Pyongyang) in the early 20th century.  Thanks to Korea Peninsula Through the Lens for making these photos available to us.  We also thank the USC Digital Library, The Maryknoll Mission Archives, and The Reverend Corwin and Nellie Taylor Collection for preserving and bringing these photos to the public.

The images all presumably draw from the era of Japanese colonial rule between 1910 and 1945.  The 10th picture indeed shows a Kindergarten graduation in which Japanese flags are shown in the background.

The pictures provide a glimpse into North Korea before Kim Il Sung and the Kim family regime.

The text below is taken from descriptions included in the KPTL special issue.

“The University of Southern California Digitial Library presents a wealth of historical photographs, oral histories, moving images, maps, documents, physical objects, and other materials owned by USC and collaborating institutions.” (USC Libraries) Two of the collections featured in the digital library, The Maryknoll Mission Archives and The Reverend Corwin and Nellie Taylor Collection, contain various photos taken in Heijo (now known as Pyongyang) in the early twentieth century. This special issue features many photos from those collections.

Woman working in fields, Heijo, Korea, ca. 1930-1950. Photograph of a woman carrying her child on her back working in a field. Next to her is a woven basket. Bordering the field is a stand of trees. (The Maryknoll Mission Archives)

Girl carrying child, Heijo, Korea, 1939. Photograph of a girl carrying a baby on her back. She smiles at the camera and has her fingers interlaced behing her back to help support the child. (The Maryknoll Mission Archives)

Family, Heijo, Korea, ca. 1930-1950. Photograph of “5 generations in the faith. Tjyang – 82 yrs, John Tjyang – 64 yrs., Stephen Tjyang – 42 yrs, Joanna Tjyang – 24 yrs, Martha Ri – 10 mos.” The little girl holds an apple. (The Maryknoll Mission Archives)

Kindergarten children, Heijo, Korea, ca. 1940. Photograph of a group of smiling kindergarten boys and girls in Heijo. (The Maryknoll Mission Archives)

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