Sunday, August 22, 2010

Help Me Save 50 Years of Photographic Work

Elwin Ichiro Ninomiya spent his life working in Little Tokyo in Los Angeles, California.  Mr. Ninomiya was a professional photographer and he served a large clientele during his decades of work.

From World War II on, he photographed weddings, funerals, parties, parades, portraits, family and baby portraits, passport photos, and copied older photos for his clients.

After his passing, his work was in danger of being simply tossed out.  But, as luck would have it, it has come to me.   I have most of the archives from Mr. Ninomiya's work. Some of it was given to other people and some of it was kept by his estate. 

I easily have over 15,000 file envelope each filled with dozens of negatives, prints, and proofs. 

I need your help to recover and restore these amazing works of art and history.  Initiatly, the need is to save these negatives from deteriorating. Some are beyond saving already but most of what I have can be saved and restored.

To do that, I will need time, equipment, and help to catalog and assess the quality of each negative.

This is a chance for you to help save a small slice of history.  Mr. Ninomiya was a very important person in the local Japanese-American community and as more of his work is shown, others will appreciate his talents as I do.

After saving as much of this work as I can, there is a documentary in the works about all these images, and the history in them. 

Please help!  You may click the DONATE button and donate any amount you wish. Every penny will help preserve the thousands of photos and documents I have.

I will be adding posts and more images to the slide show as I find them.  The sheer volume of work here is daunting but I believe this is important not only to the local Japanese-American community, but to our own historical record as well.

Check back often as I add new posts and images.


  1. This is a wonderful collection, good luck on this project!

  2. Try contacting the Japanese Museum for assistance.