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Views of Shanghai, Canton and Peking
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Collection Details
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  • Descriptive Summary
  • Biographical/Historical Note
  • Administrative Information
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Views of Shanghai, Canton and Peking
    Date (inclusive): 1870-1888
    Number: 2004.R.14
    Physical Description: 1 box (9 photographic prints)
    The Getty Research Institute
    Special Collections
    1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100
    Los Angeles 90049-1688
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10020/askref
    (310) 440-7390
    Abstract: Photographs taken in the cities of Shanghai, Guangzhou (Canton) and Beijing (Peking), in the 1870s and 1880s.
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    Language: Collection material is in French

    Biographical/Historical Note

    The photographs in this collection were taken in China by various photographers, known and unknown, in the 1870s and 1880s.

    Administrative Information


    Open for use by qualified researchers.

    Publication Rights

    Preferred Citation

    Views of Shanghai, Canton and Peking, 1870-1888, Getty Research Institute, Research Library, Accession no. 2004.R.14.

    Acquisition Information

    Acquired in 2004.

    Processing History

    Processed and cataloged by Beth Ann Guynn; finding aid encoded by Holly Larson with grant funding from the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR). Finding aid revised by Guynn in 2019.

    Digitized Material

    The collection was digitized in 2019 and the images are available online:

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The collection contains mounted albumen photographs taken in the cities of Shanghai, Guangzhou (Canton) and Beijing (Peking) in the 1870s and 1880s. The images of Shanghai include a street scene in the French concession, a stage set for a Chinese theatrical production, and an installation shot of consumer goods such as Chinese porcelain, statuary, wooden implements, and other folk objects on display in the Shanghai Municipal Council in the foreign settlement (attributed to William Saunders).
    Images related to Guangzhou include a dealer's display of Cantonese furniture, a view of the private rock garden of a Hong merchant, and an interior view of a Cantonese flower boat or floating brothel by Emil Rusfeldt. Beijing is represented by a view of a covered bridge on Wan-Shou-Shan (Longevity Hill), that leads to a pavillion in the old Summer Palace. Also included are a two studio portraits: one depicts three Cantonese actors, while the other, attributed to Saunders, depicts two Shanghai courtesans.
    Two of the photographs are attributed to William Saunders; one is by Emil Rusfeldt (Riisfeldt), and the rest are by unidentified makers.
    Mounts are wet stamped in upper right corners; captions are handwritten on mounts below in French. Titles of images are taken from the captions.


    No discernible original order; arranged by cataloger.

    Indexing Terms

    Subjects - Topics

    Portraits, Chinese
    Gardens -- China -- Beijing
    Gardens -- China -- Guangzhou
    Theaters -- Stage-setting and scenery -- China
    Streets -- China -- Concession française de Shanghai
    Furniture -- China -- Guangzhou
    Courtesans -- China
    Brothels -- China
    Actors -- China

    Subjects - Places

    Guangzhou (China) -- Description and travel
    Beijing (China) -- Description and travel
    Concession française de Shanghai -- Description and travel
    Shanghai (China) -- Description and travel
    Yihe Yuan (Beijing, China) -- Description and travel

    Genres and Forms of Material

    Albumen prints -- China -- 19th century
    Studio portraits -- China -- 19th century


    Saunders, William, fl.
    Rusfeldt, Emil