This vintage real photo postcard features a pretty Vietnamese woman wearing an extremely large hat. She is dressed in the custom of her country and her era. The text on the postcard indicates that she was photographed in Haiphong, a major port city in northeastern Vietnam. The postcard was published by P. Dieulefils of Hanoi, Vietnam. Pierre Dieulefils was the first established professional photographer in Hanoi. In addition, he was a postcard editor and explorer. He had an excellent reputation as a photographer throughout Europe and Indochina. He won many medals at Universal Exhibitions. It is estimated that he produced approximately five thousand photos and postcards and he is considered one of the greatest photographers of the region. His photographic expeditions included such locales as Vietnam, China, and Cambodia. The Cabinet Card Gallery has a nice collection of early Vietnam  (Tonkin) postcards that can be viewed by putting the word “Vietnam” in the blog’s search box.    SOLD


This vintage real photo postcard reflects a historic time in French Indo-China. The caption of the photograph states “his excellence the Kham-Sai marching against the De-Tham (Summer 1909). De Tham (1858-1913) , also known as Colonel Tham, was the Vietnamese leader of the “Yen The Insurrection”. A photograph of Tham can be seen below. This rebellion opposed French control in Northern Vietnam for a quarter of a century. This postcard is addressed and messaged in French. This photo documents the unsuccessful campaign of His Excellency Kham-Sai (Governor of Tonkin, the man in the center of the image). De-Tham had a price on his head which was ordered by the French Governor-General Klobukowsky. The reward was offered after De-Tham’s unsuccessful attempt to take Hanoi. De_Tham managed to survive until 1913 when he was beheaded in his sleep by one of his own men working for the French. His death ended a conflict which had lasted 25 years. Note the medaled man on the right. It is likely that some of the Governors best and fearless men were sent on the mission. The horse in the photograph is a Vietnamese Hmong, which is known for it’s sure-footedness in mountain terrains such as the location of De-Thams hiding place. In today’s times, Tonkin lies completely in North Vietnam. The message written on this postcard indicates that it was written by Frenchman Louis Toullaine and addressed to his niece in Paris, France.  SOLD

    Portait of De Tham  


This vintage real photo postcard presents us with a glimpse of history in southeast Asia during colonial times. The postcard features a group of soldiers; three are Vietnmese and one is French. The caption under the photograph describes the group of soldiers as a  “Groupe de Tirailleurs Tonkinois”. The Tirailleurs were soldiers comprising several regiments of local ethnic indochinese infantry organized by the French colonial authorities.The Tirailleurs were originally established in Vietnam in 1880. The regiment members in this photograph came from the noted “Tonkinese Rifles”. Initially these regiments were known to have problems with a high rate of desertion. Eventually, with French marine officers, the Vietnamese force became effective. They were positioned to occupy France’s indochinese possessions, These troops also served in Indochina, China (Boxer Rebellion), Russia (1918-1919), Syria (1920-1921), and Morroco (1925-1926). They also participated in World War I. In 1945, some regiments rebelled against the occupation of Vietnam by Japan. Despite a fierce resistance, the Tirailleurs were nearly annihilated. The illustration below shows a soldier from a regiment (Annamite Tirailleur) that fought alongside the “Tonkinese Rifles”. This postcard was published by R. Moreau (Hanoi) and is part of a series (no. 1138). The postcard was postmarked at Ninh Binh in 1905 and has a French stamp. Ninh Bình is a province in North Vietnam’s Red River Delta.  SOLD