Film: 4966

Industry + Work | 1920 | Silent | B/W


Gokasho Bay, Japan in the 1920s

Women are employed as oyster divers. Small rickety looking boats are moored together in a rocky bay. The women look fully dresses with white robes and hoods over their heads. They leap feet first into the sea water with buckets. They swim in a group with their buckets or half barrels floating in front of them.
'These divers can stay under water for three minutes'. They dive down with feet splashing into the water and bob back in groups. They swim back with their buckets.
'Grains of sand are planted in the body of the oyster and after several years will become pearls'.
A man in a white coat sits at a table with an open oyster in front of him. 'The oysters are submerged in the ocean', in barrels. 'Every six months they are brought up and cleaned'. A basket is hauled up by a Japanese man in a large straw hat. Women scrub the sides of the baskets on dry land. A large group of Japanese women in large straw hats sit around a table, sorting the oysters. 'Removing the fully grown pearls'. A man opens the oysters. A hand fingers a bowl full of pearls and a necklace. Jewellery production.

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