Plates and Figurines Marked Made in Occupied Japan

Occupied Japan plates
Occupied Japan plates

Stamped Occupied Japan

Have you ever bought a figurine or piece of pottery and discovered it said "Occupied Japan" on the reverse? You may have wondered why this was marked like this.

After World War II the allied forces occupied Japan until the early 1950s. Their ceramics, pottery and china were stamped "made in occupied Japan" or simply "Occupied Japan".

Now these pieces are becoming very collectible and the savvy collector is always on the search for something that will only increase in value. These are not only of interest to a collector of Japanese art and design but also to historians.

Where to find Occupied Japan items

There are many places to find figurines, pottery, or china that are stamped with the "Occupied Japan" or "Made in Occupied Japan".

Ebay is a great place to start, there are usually several people who sell frequently on that site. Because the stock on Ebay is always changing, it is a good idea to check back often. Remember with Ebay, if you like something , buy it because it may not be there tomorrow or even in an hour.

Another place will be traditional auction houses. These may be found in boxes and sold as a job lot so it is important that you look in as many boxes as possible because it is likely it won't be listed in the sales brochure.

It is possible to find some at charity shops such as Salvation Army and Goodwill but normally they sort through and sell these separately. If you speak with them they may be willing to keep them back and sell them to you.

Swap meets, garage sales, and if you are in the UK, car boot sales. These are always good places to find these things. It is best to arrive early so you can have the best selection. Talk to traders and see if they have more than what is on display.

Antique shops may also have them but you will pay a much higher price than the previous places.

Collecting Occupied Japan items

Cathy Anderson from Seatlle, has photographed and listed various manufactures and designs of cups and saucers which are marked "occupied Japan" or "Made in occupied Japan". She herself is a collector. Take a look to see if you have the same ones. Her list is increasing as she buys, and photographs her collection and displays it here on the internet.

Why are they stamped Made in Occupied Japan

There are several reasons these could be stamped like this. Firstly for export reasons. After the war there was continued animosity against the Japanese and as such people didn't want to buy their products. People didn't want to support Japan by buying their products.

At that time, their products were also inferior it was thought. If you have seen the film "Back to the Future" they make reference to this. In the 1950s Japan was synonymous with poor quality and now it is produces some of the highest quality goods available.

It could have also been that they used these marks as a stamp of defiance against being occupied.

Whatever the reason, they now are becoming collectible and are increasing in value.


Displaying your collectibles

If you want to display your collectibles, opt for a glass cabinet. This will protect them whilst also allowing you to view them. The correct placement should be away from strong light that could bleach the coloring of your pieces.

Another advantage is, when others want to view a piece, they needn't handle it to do so. Safely placed on display, your collection will be kept in a clean, dust free environment.

More by this Author

  • Redneck Party Games
    5

    Are you thinking of having a redneck themed party and want to add a bit of extra fun? Try some redneck party games! These will turn your event into one that will be talked about all year long.

  • PEZ Collectibles
    4

    How many PEZ dispensers have passed through your hands? Hundreds possibly. What do you think they would be worth today? Take a look and see if you can spot your favorite.

  • Start Your Own Business Buying and Selling Gold
    9

    Start your own business buying and selling gold. A large capital outlay isn't necessary to begin in this lucrative market. Find out how you can begin building your own profitable business today.


Are you a collector? 3 comments

certifiedcrush profile image

certifiedcrush 4 years ago from Charleston, WV

Well done. I always keep my eye out for Occupied Japan pieces. If nothing else, they are easy to date! :)


Blond Logic profile image

Blond Logic 4 years ago from Brazil Author

HI Certifiedcrush,

Yes that is true. I first came across a piece at a yard sale in the States. With children, it opens up a new avenue to discuss history. It makes it more tangible.

Thank you for stopping by.


LisaKeating 2 years ago

I have collected and sold a number of O J figurines. They tend not to be of the highest quality. I see a lot of pieces based on English designs. They are interesting and historical like you said. Thanks for the info.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working