Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

Shown at a feast three days after the conclusion of the Ryukyuan American Trade Treaty in July 14, 1854 at NAHA,OKINAWA.

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Comment by Mark Weems on May 8, 2019 at 12:15pm

Nice job Samurai! Really interesting to see such a large group playing this material. I lived in Makiminato, Okinawa 1980- 81 and have shopped and eaten in Naha many times!

Comment by Rob Morrison on May 8, 2019 at 1:38pm

It's really a small world...  I lived on Okinawa from March 1970 to September 1971 courtesy of the U. S. Army.  I lived in Futemma, and my Okinawan next door neighbor played the samisen every evening with his family sitting with him on the floor in a circle.  At the time I was half a world from home and this was a really magical experience for me that I've never forgotten.  I got interested and discovered that the samisen version of the banjo had been played for at least 500 years. 

Comment by Samurai banjo on May 9, 2019 at 2:36pm

This is a flyer of the Commodore Matthew C. Perry's Minstrel Show in Okinawa in 1854, which was published in the "Jonathan Goble of Japan".
Jonathan Goble (1827-1926). Goble first visited Japan as a marine in Commodore Matthew C. Perry's expedition of 1853-54.

Comment by Samurai banjo on May 9, 2019 at 3:01pm

This is a picture of a minstrel show when a Japanese was invited to perform in the Pohatan steam Frigate anchored off Yokohama on March 27, 1854, the same year.

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