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Japanese Studies

This guides primarily describes resources available at the UMD Libraries for research on Japanese Studies. The guide also directs researchers to collections and resources beyond the UMD Libraries.

Japanese Studies Related Archival Collections at the UMD Libraries

Gordon W. Prange Collection (Hornbake Library North) - The Gordon W. Prange Collection is the most comprehensive archive in the world of Japanese print publications issued during the early years of the Occupation of Japan, 1945-1949. These books, magazines, newspapers, posters, maps and more were subjected to censorship by the Allied Forces. They bear censorship markings ranging from check-in and examination dates to deletions, suppression and other changes. 

Gordon W. Prange Papers (Hornbake Library North) - Dr. Gordon W. Prange (July 16, 1910 - May 15, 1980) was an historian and history professor at the University of Maryland from 1937 until his death in 1980. While teaching at the University of Maryland, Prange published many books and articles on a variety of historical topics, but he is probably best known for his research on the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor by Japanese forces during World War II.  The Gordon W. Collection was named after Dr. Prange, who was instrumental in bringing the materials to the University of Maryland.

Japan-America Student Conference (JASC) Archives (Hornbake Library North) - The Japan-America Student Conference is a non-profit educational and cultural exchange program for university students from the United States and Japan. The first Conference was held in 1934 in Tokyo and was initiated by a small group of Japanese university students concerned about the deterioration of relations between the United States and Japan. The Conference was held each year until the Second World War forced a postponement; it was revived in 1947 by American and Japanese students then living in Japan.

Leo Sirota Collection (Michele Smith Performing Arts Library) - Leo Sirota (1885-1965), outstanding Ukrainian-born pianist and teacher, studied in St. Petersburg with Alexander Glazounov and later in Berlin with Ferruccio Busoni. Sirota played Busoni's massive Concerto under the composer's baton and soon established a firm reputation in the major cities of Europe. He also performed in Soviet Russia. Following a trip to Japan in 1928, Sirota was offered the directorship of the Ueno Imperial Academy in Tokyo. The Sirota family settled in Japan and Leo was much sought-after as both recitalist and teacher.

Luther Whiting Mason Collection (Michele Smith Performing Arts Library) - Luther W. Mason (1818-1896) was an American music educator and editor of school songbooks. A student of Lowell Mason, and a pioneer of primary school music instruction, he spent two years in Japan introducing Western music to the imperial court. His papers are held under NAfME Record Group 25-2: Personal Papers of Individuals

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is an independent Federal Agency that preserves and oversees the management of all Federal records.  A sizable portion of NARA's holdings may be searched online in the National Archives Catalog.  Below may be an useful information for conducting research for Japanese Studies. 

  • Guide to the Federal Records - Guide of the collection which incorporates descriptive information about federal records acquired by the National Archives after the 1995 paper edition went to press, and it is regularly updated to reflect new acquisitions of federal records.
  • Allied Occupation of Japan - The documents related to the Allied Occupation of Japan can be found under 331.36, General Records of General Headquarters Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers (GHQ SCAP) of RG331.
  • Allied Council for Japan: Far Eastern Commission - The documents on the bodies are found in RG43.  Allied Council for Japan was an international body charged with advising the Supreme Commander Allied Powers, Gen. Douglas MacArthur, on the occupation of Japan (43.11.27 Records of the U.S. Element of the Allied Council for Japan).
    Far Eastern Commission was established at the Tripartite Foreign Ministers meeting in Moscow to control Japan during the Allied Occupation (43.11.23 Records relating to the Far Eastern Commission (FEC)).
  • The Nazi War Crime and Japanese Imperial Government Records Interagency Working Group - The Nazi War Crimes and Japanese Imperial Government Records Interagency Working Group (IWG) locates, identifies, inventories, and recommends for declassification, currently classified U.S. records relating to Nazi and Japanese Imperial Government war crimes.
  • Okinawa under the U.S. Control - Documents on Okinawa under the U.S. administration can be found in 260.12, Records of the U.S. Civil Administration of the Ryukyu Islands (USCAR) 1945-72.

Archives and Libraries

Freer/Sackler Gallery (the Smithsonian's museums of Asian Art) - The museums hold care for world-class collections of Asian and American Arts.  Its Library has its reading room for research. 

Library of Congress, Asian Reading Room - The Asian Reading Room provides public access to more than 4 million items in over 130 Asian languages.  In the Reading Room, researchers can use the Asian Division's collections of printed materials, microform, and databases and confer with reference librarians to answer research questions about the countries of East, South, and Southeast Asia. 

MacArthur Memorial Library and Archives - Contains General MacArthur's original collection.  The archives hold some 2 million documents, 86,000 photographs, 130 photograph albums, and 111 motion picture films in addition to sound recordings, newspapers, rare books, scrapbooks, and microfilms.