Yak-hide boats at Gerpa

Yak-hide boats at Gerpa

2001. (Film negative)

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Raw Image

Key Information


Hugh E. Richardson


Hugh Richardson

Date of Photo

1937-8 or 1947-50?


Yarlung Valley Region > Tsethang Gerpa Khrukha

Accession number


Image Dimensions

85 x 60 mm

Two yak-hide boats (ko wa) on the bank of the Tsangpo river at Gerpa where a ferry also operated. They are supported by paddles and there are several people standing and sitting around them.

Further Information

Photographic Process

Negative film nitrate

Date Acquired

Donated August 2001

Donated by

The executors of the estate of Hugh E. Richardson


Hugh E. Richardson

Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - Notes on negative album - 'NYEMO. SAMYE. YARLUNG. RGYAL.' is written on the cover of this blue negative album in white in Richardson's hand. [KC 24/3/2006]

Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - Notes on Blue negative album index - No. 46.'ko-wa'.

Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - Richardson's handlist: 'Blue Album. [No.] 46. 'Yak hide coracle'.

Other Information - Location: Richardson mentions this ferrry in High Peaks, Pure Earth , London, Serindia Publications, 1998, p. 317. "Four miles upstream from the 'On valley a ferry crosses to Rtse-thang on the south bank. It passes two rocky islets with ruined masonary towers which formerly supported one of Thang-stong rgyal-po's famous iron-chain bridges."

Other Information - Dates

Other Information - Dates: Contact prints of the type of which this image was made seem to have been made between 1944-49. There are 46 images printed out on Velox paper with no batch number references, including many images of the Nechung oracle, certain inscriptions and visits to monasteries and historical sites as well as scenes with officials on a swing. Some of the images are clearly related to the Nechung Oracle ceremony that took place on the 8th Day of the 5th Month of the Tibetan Year of 1944, some contain images of Major James Guthrie, who took up the post of Civil Surgeon Bhutan and Tibet in March 1945, spending some considerable time in Lhasa [see Tibet and the British Raj, Alex McKay, Richmond: Curzon Press, 1997, p.237] and many images have been dated on the back by Richardson to 1946. They also include images of the Samye inscription pillar, which Richardson states that he photographed in 1949 [ A Corpus of Early Tibetan Inscriptions , Royal Asiatic Society, James G. Forlong Series, No. XXIX, Hertford: Stephen Austin & Sons Ltd, 1985, p.26] [MS 17/12/2005]

For Citation use:
The Tibet Album. "Yak-hide boats at Gerpa" 05 Dec. 2006. The Pitt Rivers Museum. <http://tibet.prm.ox.ac.uk/photo_2001.>.

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