Vintage Snapshots: 20th Century Tokyo


Konnichiwa! As per our London edition, I’ll not be commenting all that much on these. I’ll be even more discreet about exact locations, as I’m still pretty unfamiliar with this town. And please click on these to enlarge them — lots of interesting stuff in these. Here goes…

Ernie Pyle theater, circa 1950

Mid-’50s — two Datsun DBs on the bridge…

Ueno Station, 1957

Late ’50s. That 4CV Hino has whitewalls! The van behind (Datsun?) is downright cute.

Late ’50s. Toyota Coronaline delivery and a Triumph Mayflower.

Late ’50s. Plenty of American cars in those days. Looks like a ’47 Mercury…

Early ’60s — the Mazda trikes are out in force!

Early ’60s — with a whale of a Buick (and a Caddy following it discreetly)

1961, when Toyota Crowns ruled the land…

Ginza, 1961. The latest Chevrolet dwarfs its Datsun neighbour.

Early ’60s


1963. Love that truck in the middle.

Early ’60s. Really great shot with an amazing variety of cars. Skyline in the foreground; I’ll let you sort out the rest…


An alignment of Nissan Cedric Customs in 1964

Mid-’60s — the American cars are almost gone now…

1965. A Breezeway saves the day. Sing it: “Monorail, Monorail, Monoraaaaaiiill!”

1967. Construction work on Blofeld’s underground lair continues unabated.

1968 — a rare prewar building (downright impossible to find nowadays) and three postwar icons.

Late ’60s. Colour makes a timid return.

Circa 1970

Circa 1970 again, but with even more S50 Crown taxis.

Early ’70s, with a lovely Hino truck in the foreground.

Early ’70s — now with a Kujira Crown taxi. Also a Prince Skyway, a couple of Corona coupes and a Nissan A50 Gloria.

Early ’70s


1979, just prior to another attack by Godzilla.

Ginza, 1980.

I think we’ll stop it right here. Sorry there were so few colour snaps. I’ll do better next time… Where are we going? Well, I was thinking of something west of Tokyo.