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Comfort Bag

Article about: Okay, I have a confession to make: I am a closet comfort bag collector! Yes, it's true and I think that the reason has to do with the artwork on the fronts of the bags as well as the often i

  1. #11

    Default

    That makes sense... Perhaps the information on the bags will reveal their purposes...

  2. #12
    MAP
    MAP is offline
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    The green bags were issued pieces called Hoko-Bukuro or public service/utility bags. The "comfort" bags were called Imon-Bukuro or relief/consolation bags and we're sent from home with hard to get items

    I'm sure others here (Nick, etc.) are well versed in this subject matter but I have to rely partially on my books. My favorite is by August Saiz called "Henti". Pages 455 to 457 has some good information and explains the printed text and what they typically carried such as their official papers, documents, etc. though often they were repurposed to carry food and such.

    Btw...the zigzag indicates it was "Army"
    "Please", Thank You" and proper manners appreciated

    My greatest fear is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them

    "Don't tell me these are investments if you never intend to sell anything" (Quote: Wife)

  3. #13

    Default Hoko Bukuro

    Yes, they were official Army issue items, not civilian items like the comfort bags.

    They were originally meant as carry bags for the pay book. Pay books did not have hard protective covers when they came out in 1873, so they soon got tattered. So from 9th June 1874 they issued pay books in a bag, which evolved into the Service Bag. Intended contents of the bag later expanded to include medals and orders, call up papers, savings book, training papers, etc related to army life. If you were a reserve you kept all items in here that you required to respond to call up.

    As officially issued items, they have defined specs, as shown in the drawing below.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Comfort Bag  
    Last edited by nick komiya; 12-15-2016 at 01:55 PM.

  4. #14

    Default Comfort Bag

    This is an interesting Comfort Bag in that the artwork covers just about every patriotic theme one could imagine. In the lower left corner is the outline of a factory complex, supporting the war effort. In the lower right corner naval ships can be seen. Across the top, twin-engine military airplanes patrol the sky. The center aspect of the bag shows a woman in the traditional garb that was quite common for women who belonged to the various women's patriotic associations. In her right hand she waves a national style flag and gathered in her left arm is her small son, dressed in a military style uniform with helmet. Dressing children in copies of army and navy uniforms was very popular during the time. The practice applied to the Western nations as well, including the U.S. and England. Special uniforms would be tailored to match father's uniforms and this often included matching military orders and decorations as well as swords, etc. They could be quite elaborate at times. The boy in his mother's arms holds aloft a Comfort Bag that indicates that the people at home, including the youngest were in support of those fighting overseas. The men in service were reminded that they fought not only for the Emperor but for their wives, mothers, sweethearts and children. This bag is a large example and contains its various labels and stamps still affixed to the front.Comfort BagComfort BagComfort Bag
    MichaelB

  5. #15

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    One of my Comfort Bags still has its "goodies" in it. If I can find it I will post it as well. I wondered whether Tom P might have a hoko-bukuro and techo that were named to the same person that he might post here?
    MichaelB

  6. #16
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    Quote by MichaelB View Post
    One of my Comfort Bags still has its "goodies" in it. If I can find it I will post it as well. I wondered whether Tom P might have a hoko-bukuro and techo that were named to the same person that he might post here?
    MichaelB
    Hey Mike,
    I think I do have such a set, but unfortunately, it is squirreled away in a box under a bunch of other boxes back at the U.S. homestead. Sorry!


    Tom

  7. #17

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    Tom-
    I thought that there was a chance that you had a handful of these, but forgot you probably left everything back at home. Thank you anyway.

    MichaelB

  8. #18

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    While not quite a "comfort" bag, similar bags can still be had in the Japan Ground Self-Defense force exchange/canteen.
    I bought these at the Hokkaido HQ when I was on the annual Yama-Sakura Exercise in 1993/4.

    靴手入袋
    Kutsu Teire Bukuro
    Shoe Cleaning Bag

    貴重品袋
    Kichōhin Bukuro
    Valuables Bag

    --Guy
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Comfort Bag  

  9. #19

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    Here are sets of bags and paybooks for two brothers.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Comfort Bag   Comfort Bag  


  10. #20

    Default Comfort Bag With Items

    Quite a few Comfort Bags lacked any type of artwork like the one pictured here. There were normally organized campaigns to put together the bags by Patriotic Organizations, Schools, and even Individuals. The bags would be gathered and sent to central collecting sites in towns and cities, and then trucked or shipped to train depots or shipping ports where they would be mailed out to the men. This particular bag is larger than the artwork style of bags shown previously. It has quite a lot of writing on both the front and back. The reverse side has black inked characters but there are also faded blue characters written on the right-hand side. This particular bag also came with its contents. I'll show some of the items in the next post.
    MichaelBComfort BagComfort BagComfort Bag

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