Return to Sakura: Cherry Blossoms in Japanese Cultural History List 

First made in the 1850s, stereographs were most popular between 1870 and 1920. Displayed here are facsimile copies of original stereograph photos from the Library’s collection, made to fit inside this replica of a historic viewer. Its design is similar to Alexander Beckers Tabletop 1860 model cabinet stereo viewer.

Stereographs consist of two nearly identical photographs or photomechanical prints, paired to produce the illusion of a single three-dimensional image, usually when viewed through a stereoscope. Most of the displayed examples were published by Underwood & Underwood between 1904 and 1908. They feature cherry blossoms in Japan and related activities, from a holiday school outing to a “cherry-bloom festival” game. Accentuating associations of sakura with Japanese places and people, the images offer glimpses of such famous sites as Tokyo’s Ueno Park and the Imperial Palace.

Holiday Outing of a Japanese School

Underwood & Underwood. Holiday Outing of a Japanese School, under the Beautiful Cherry Blossoms, Tokyo, Japan, 1904. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (034.00.00)

Cherry Trees by the River Tokio

Underwood & Underwood. Cherry Trees by the River Tokio, 1908. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (035.00.00)

The National Flower of Japan

Underwood & Underwood. Cherry Blossoms, the National Flower of Japan, during Cherry-Bloom Holiday Week, Uyeno Park, Tokyo, Japan, 1904. PPrints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (046.01.00)

Spring-Time Glory of the Cherry Blossoms in Uyeno Park

Underwood & Underwood. Cherry Blossoms, the Spring-Time Glory of the Cherry Blossoms in Uyeno Park, Tokyo, Japan, 1905. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (047.01.00)

The "Lotus-Flower," a Game Played by Japanese Children during Cherry-Blossom Festival

Underwood & Underwood. The “Lotus-Flower,” a Typical Game Played by Japanese Children during Cherry-Bloom Festival, Tokyo, Jaban [Japan], 1904. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (048.01.00)

In the Heart of the Flowery Kingdom

Strohmeyer & Wyman. In the Heart of the Flowery Kingdom, Nara, Japan, 1896. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (049.01.00)

Dwarf Cherry Trees at Omuro Gosho Temple

Underwood & Underwood. Amidst the Beauties of Springtime—Dwarf Cherry Trees at Omuro Gosho Temple, 1904. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (050.01.00)

A Japanese Sans Souci

Carleton H. Graves (d. 1943). A Japanese Sans Souci. Arashiyama, Japan, 1902. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (051.01.00)

Along the Moat Surrounding the Imperial Palace Park

Underwood & Underwood. Along the Moat Surrounding the Imperial Palace Park, during the Gorgeous Cherry-Bloom Season, Tokyo, Japan, 1904. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (052.01.00)

Cherry-Blossoms along the Moat Surrounding the Imperial Palace Park

Underwood & Underwood. Cherry-Blossoms along the Moat Surrounding the Imperial Palace Park, Tokyo, Japan, 1904. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (053.01.00)

Cherry Blossoms over Beautiful Mukojima Avenue (north), Tokyo, Japan

Underwood & Underwood. A Canopy of Cherry Blossoms over Beautiful Mukojima Avenue, (north), Tokyo, Japan, 1904. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (054.01.00)