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First "Good Luck" flag

Article about: Hello everyone. Picked up this "good luck" flag recently. Are there resources I can use to try to translate?

  1. #1

    Default First "Good Luck" flag

    First "Good Luck" flag

    First "Good Luck" flag

    Hello everyone.

    Picked up this "good luck" flag recently. Are there resources I can use to try to translate?

  2. #2
    ?

    Default

    This bottom image is the correct orientation.

    It will make it easier for the translators.

    Regards

    Russ
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture First "Good Luck" flag   First "Good Luck" flag  


  3. #3

    Default

    Nice flag.

    Right side:
    皇軍大健
    Kōgun Taiken
    Great Health to the Imperial Army

    祈武運長久
    Inori Bu'un Chōkyū
    Prayers for continued luck in the fortunes of war

    坂井安志君
    Sakai Yasushi-kun
    Mr. Sakai Yasushi

    I'm not 100% certain of the 志 part of the given name; taking a guess.
    The rest of the writing are signatures of well-wishers.

    -- Guy

  4. #4

    Default

    Thank you, Russ, for showing the correct orientation of the flag! That was one thing I wasn’t certain of when taking the photos.

    And much appreciated, Guy! Sakai Yasushi, would that be the name of the soldier? Would it help if I took a closer image of that segment? For some reason when I uploaded the photo it blurred a bit, which probably doesn’t help.

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote by Salocin View Post
    ... Would it help if I took a closer image of that segment? For some reason when I uploaded the photo it blurred a bit, which probably doesn’t help.
    No, actually I can clearly see it -- I'm just not certain that it is 志. It bears strong resemblance to the Sōsho [草書 "grass writing"] boxed in red:
    First "Good Luck" flag

    The soldier's name was Sakai Yasushi; Sakai being the family name.

    Guy

  6. #6

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    Thank you so much for your help, Guy. Do you know of a way that I could possibly research Sakai Yasushi further? Any details on the flag such as family or location? Or perhaps a database I can check? Just a cursory search on Google brought up a Lt.-General who passed away in 1986, but I don’t know how common the name is.

  7. #7

    Default

    Researching Japanese soldiers is virtually impossible unless you are a family member, speak/read Japanese, and send a copy of your family register to that particular government office (family register copy from the city office must be less than 30 days old).

    Sometimes we can find locations written on a flag such as yours -- but unfortunately yours has no mention of location that I could find (company name, town, pinpoint a certain shrine from stamps, etc.).

    Sakai is a very common name, not unlike Rogers in the US/GB. Sakai is listed as number 66 out of 100 most common surnames [Rogers #66 out of 100 surnames in the US]. When researching Japanese names you must use kanji because the latin-based romanized transliterations could apply to totally different families; e.g.: Sakai can be 酒井 or 坂井.

    -- Guy

    Edit: P.S. There is a fairly accurate database for Japanese naval officers:
    English
    Japanese

  8. #8

    Default

    I see! I guess I'm pretty lucky I even got a name. Without a direct line of provenance, nor any identifying comments written on the flag itself, I suppose its history will remain a mystery. I doubt the people I got it from will know anything, unless they ask the person they got it from. But even that isn't a guarantee.

    In any case, its a good flag. And Sakai Yasushi - whoever he was - mattered to a lot of people. And that's worth honoring and remembering.

    Also, what is the best way to store/preserve this flag? Right now it’s folded up in a gallon freezer bag in a drawer away from light but surely there’s a better way. And should I use gloves whenever I handle it?

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