Drucker Photographs of Korea and Japan, 1910-1940s

Overview of the Collection

Drucker Photographs of Korea and Japan
1910-1940s (inclusive)
.25 linear feet of shelf space, (1 box, 115 images)
Collection Number
PC 164 (collection)
Approximately 115 photographs, primarily of North Korea under Japanese occupation, circa the 1910s and 1920s. Approximately ten images from Japan are included. The materials were collected by Minnie Barstow Drucker, who was raised in a far eastern trading family.
Washington State University Libraries' Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections (MASC)
Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections
Terrell Library Suite 12
Pullman, WA
Telephone: 509-335-6691
Access Restrictions

This collection is open and available for research use.

All notes and titles are in English. In the album, some Korean or Japanese writing can be found within some of the photographs

Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Minnie Barstow was born in Yokohama, Japan on Nov. 22, 1888, the only child of a far eastern sea trader, Captain E.S. Barstow, and his wife, “a lady of noble oriental descent.” After 1897 Minnie was raised in Chinnampo, Korea, and then was educated at the Yokohama French Convent, the American Missionary School at Pyen Yang, and the Pratt Institute in New York. On Feb. 14, 1912, she married mining engineer Arthur E. Drucker in Seoul, Korea. The Druckers came to Pullman, WA in 1926 when Arthur accepted a position as Dean of the Washington State College School of Mines and Geology. Minnie passed away in Pullman on October 4, 1940.

In 1936 the Druckers donated approximately 200 books to the WSC Libraries in memory of Minnie’s father, Captain E.S. Barstow, as the Drucker Oriental Library. In 1944, Arthur Drucker donated a collection of Asian furniture, accessories, art, textiles, and costumes to WSC as the Minnie Barstow Drucker Collection of Oriental Art. The majority of the art materials had been collected by Minnie or her parents during their time in Asia. Initially housed in White Honors Hall, as of 2017 the art collection is administered by the WSU President’s Office and only viewable by appointment.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The majority of the images in the collection are contained in a scrapbook depicting Korea under Japanese rule, likely in the 1910s or 1920s. An additional 14 loose images depict Korea, Japan, or the Druckers and associated, likely in this same timeframe. The few non-photographic items, ships menus and documentation of the Drucker Art Collection, date from the 1930s and 1940s.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Copyright restrictions apply.

Preferred Citation

[Item Description] Drucker Photographs of Korea and Japan, 1910-1940s

Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries, Pullman, WA.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


The folders of photographs are arranged in a subject-based order, and the few non-photographic items reside at the end of the collection.

Acquisition Information

Accession information on these images is nearly lost; they were received at the Washington State University Libraries’ Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections (MASC) sometime prior to 2000, apparently from a T. White (it’s possible this could be an abbreviation indicating these were transferred from White Hall). In 2003, it was accessioned as UPC-0023.

Processing Note

The collection was processed in March, 2017 by University Archivist Mark O'English. Items were foldered upon accessioning in 2003, and refoldered in 2017. Other than unframing two photographs in 2017, all original formatting and labeling was retained.

Related Materials

A title guide to the books of the original donation of the Drucker Oriental Library is held in MASC as Cage 1799.

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
1 1 Barstow home, Korea. 1 image. 1910 ca.
2 Drucker, Arthur E. 1 image.
3 Japan. Hand-tinted photographs, unframed in 2017. Mt. Fuji; forest scene. 2 images.
4 Korean woman servant. With two Caucasian children. 1 image. 1912
5 Mrs. A.E. Drucker Book Collection display. 1 image. 1939
6 Nikko, Japan. Hand-tinted photographs. 7 images.
7 Photo album. Images are undated and unlabeled, but most images are stamped “Meijiya. Heijo.” This would seem to indicate that at least those photographs are of Pyongyang, today the capital of North Korea (Pyongyang was known as Heijo while under Japanese rule from 1910-1945). At least some of the images of are of Seoul; some may be Busan. 96 photographs. 1910s
8 Temple or pagoda image. Unidentified. 1 image.
9 Van Ess, Thomas William Jr. (age 3) & Van Ess, Winifred. (age 6 months). 1 image. 1922
10 Minnie Barstow Drucker Art Collection labels. 2 items. 1940s
11 Shipboard menus, from S.S. President Jefferson and S.S. President McKinley. 2 items. 1936
12 Documentation on the Druckers, collected in 2017.

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top