This post also provides several examples and explanations of Japanese postmarks.
This chart by Urakawa Kazuya provides the basic method scholars use to subdivide Japanese picture postcards into four periods: Period I. 1/3 divided back: March 1907-March 1918 Period III.
The front of the card is bilingual Russia-Japanese.
After February 15, 1933, the “ten-ten” was added to the “郵便はがき” marking on the backs of Japanese picture postcards.Here’s a postcard published in 1932, before the change in postcard printing conventions, but after the “Manchurian Incident”: This postcard was published in or after February 1933, which is evident from the “ten-ten” on the kana for “ga” in “hagaki”: This “1/2 divided back, hagaki” style card was published until the end of the war (August, 1945) After the war, “きがは便郵” was reversed to read “郵便はがき” as shown in this next card from the American Occupation Period: Some Japanese picture postcards from Periods III and IV do not have the standard 1/2 divided back “hagaki” mark.Based on research into the postmarks and cards themselves, contemporary journalism, secondary scholarship, and some postcard websites, the EAIC has devised the following periodization scheme: Period I.Undivided back: October 1, 1900-March 27th, 1907 Period II.I am still trying to work out a periodization scheme for these cards.
What follows are some examples of Chinese-language markings on Japanese picture postcards.
If you work with Japanese picture postcards as historical source material, you have probably noticed that most surviving cards lack postmarks and other temporal indicators.
This post provides a guide to estimating the age of these revealing artifacts, based on printing conventions that conformed to international and Japanese postal regulations.
This first example is postmarked “August 19, 1932.” The lack of a “ten-ten” on the “ga” indicates that it was issued before February of 1933.
The front depicts a scene from Harbin, which had a significant Russian population in the early 1930s.
Here are some more examples of undivided back cards from Period I: Some undivided back cards are military mail from the 1930s and 1940s.