The works of Sakubei Yamamoto
Transport (inside the mine)

Transport Man, the Number One Dresser in the Pit in the Mid-Meiji Era (1868-1912)
January 1965

Meiji Chuki Norimawashi Saodori, Yama No.1 Omekashi Otoko
[Transport Man, the Number One Dresser in the Pit in the Mid-Meiji Era (1868-1912)]
38.3 x 54.4 cm Painting in Watercolors and Ink

Please look at his picturesque costume.
It is said that some girls working at pits (yama) fell in love with men like him, being thrown into ecstasies at first sight.
The shown transport man wears a white band around his head with its knot behind to make his eyes slant upward. He also wears flashy suspenders contrasted strikingly with his new white underwear, pants with gaiters and Japanese socks (tabi) in the same dark blue color. A shiny brass lamp (kantera) with a glaring reflex plate called a terashi is held in his right hand.
Such transport men would jump lightly on running trains of mine cars like little birds and they looked glamorous and sophisticated to young girls.

Lyrics of "Gotton Bushi" Song at the Top Left
Washi no sama-chan hako norimawashi,
norikata jozu de nao kawai.

My sama-chan (sweetheart) is so good at riding mine cars
that my love for him grows and grows.
Gotton (Clang)! (Interjected chant)

Text at the Bottom Left
In pits with surases (guide rails and rollers), they did not ride on capels (kosumoto: the chain shown in the picture connecting the winch rope socket to the draw bar fixed between the base of the box and truck of the mine car), but rode on footholds between mine cars (ainori). They always rode on capels when empty mine cars were lowered, because ainori was dangerous.

Translation Assisted by Mr. Nathan Johndro

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