Introducing Our Collections

Special Collections

We would like to acquaint you with the special collections owned by the International Library of Children's Literature (ILCL) and provide you with an explanation of search methods as well as with some reference information.

The Nobumasa Ikeda (Yōichiro Minami) Collection

[ILCL Call Number VZ2]

General Information

ILCL Special Collections [Classification Number VZ2]
In 2001, we received a donation totaling 860 volumes from the estate of Nobumasa Ikeda, including 509 volumes of his writings (382 Japanese language books, 1 Chinese language book, 65 periodicals, 16 periodical supplements, 45 textbooks) and 351 reference books (9 Japanese language books, 342 Western language books).

Nobumasa Ikeda (1893-1980)

His actual given name was Yoshimasa. Other pen names include Yōichiro Minami and Nobumasa Hagie.
In September 1926, he published his first work of young adult fiction, "Natsukashiki dennmāku no shōnen" in the boy's magazine "Shōnen Kurabu." His pen name, Nobumasa, came about from a misreading by his editor of the kanji for his given name, Yoshimasa. He wrote a number of popular stories, including sentimental works, biographies, and adventure stories, for serial magazines and other media.
His novels "Mitsurin no oja" (serialized from January–March, 1932) and "Hoeru mitsurin" in "Shōnen Kurabu" gained him an avid readership as a writer of boys' adventure stories under the pen name Yōichiro Minami.

Search Methods

To search the collections, type either of the following into the NDL Search.
Please be aware that you may also obtain search hits for materials outside the collections. Though the Japanese language books start with a local call number and the Western language books start with the call number "VZ2," they are all books in the Nobumasa Ikeda (Yōichiro Minami) Collection.

  • Call number field "VZ2*" and Holding place field "Children's Library" (results contain both Japanese and Western language books)
  • NDLC (category) "VZ2" (results contain Western language books only)


"Nihon jido bungaku daijiten" Ōsaka Kokusai Jido Bungakukan ed., Dainippontosho. (International Institute for Children's Literature, Osaka (IICLO)). October 1993, Vol. 1 (NDL Call Number: KG2-E42)
"Nye eventyr og historier" by H.C. Andersen and others ―from the Nobumasa Ikeda (Yoichiro Minami) Collection: Kikuko Sugiyama : 'The Window―the journal of the ILCL' No. 2 (March 2002) (NDL Call Number: Z71-E919)
"Michi no sekai e: jido bungaku ni egakareta boken" ILCL ed., July 2003. (NDL Call Number: KE177-H7)

The Ingram Collection

[ILCL Call Number VZ1]

General Information

One of the special collections owned by the ILCL
This collection consists chiefly of approximately 1,150 children's books from the United Kingdom spanning the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries (10 volumes from the eighteenth century, 470 volumes from the nineteenth century, 670 volumes from the twentieth century). These children's books also include some volumes from America, Australia, Denmark, and France.
This children's book collection was compiled by the Venerable Edward Henry Winnington-Ingram (1849–1930), Canon Residentiary and Archdeacon of Hereford Cathedral, England from the latter half of the nineteenth century on the theme of Victorian moral and spiritual values. His daughter, Constance, continued his collection and expanded it to include classics of children's literature and picture books. This later collection was donated to Cheltenham Gloucester College by Constance in connection with her vice presidency of Cheltenham Ladies' College where it was held until 1994. Dozens of books were added in that period. After its purchase in 1996, it came into the ownership of the ILCL.
Starting with the first edition of "The History of Little King Pippin " (ILCL Call Number: VZ1-801) by John Newbery who started publishing business of children's books in London in 1744, a vast number of works by major authors and illustrators are included from Lewis Carroll, George McDonald, Walter Crane, and Kate Greenaway at the dawn of children's literature to Beatrix Potter and Kenneth Graham in the twentieth century. This is a unique collection that enables readers to trace the development of English children's literature.

Search Methods

  • NDL Search
    Click "Narrow down conditions"
    Search by typing "VZ1" into the NDLC(Classification) field or "VZ1-*" into the Call Number field.


Fascination of the Winnington-Ingram Collection of Children's Books’, Teruo Jingu ("The Window―the journal of the ILCL" Number 3, March 2003, pp. 16-20.)(NDL Call Number: Z71-E919)
British picture books in the 19th century from the Winnington-Ingram Collection in the ILCL’, Shin'ichi Yoshida ("The Window―the journal of the ILCL" Number 7, March 2007, pp. 19-25.)(NDL Call Number: Z71-E919)

The Gordon W. Prange Children's Book Collection (Microform materials)

[ILCL Call Number VZ3]

What is the Gordon W. Prange Children's Book Collection?

The Prange Collection, owned by the University of Maryland Libraries, is a collection of print publications and documents that were subjected to censorship by the General Headquarters of the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers (GHQ/SCAP) during the Postwar Occupation of Japan. (For more information on the complete Prange Collection please see the "Gordon W. Prange Collection" and "Search the Prange Collection" on the NDL homepage (in Japanese)). Children's materials account for 8,100 of the roughly 73,000 items held in the Prange Collection and include a wide range of materials such as picture books, story books, manga (comic books), coloring books, and traditional Japanese karuta playing cards. The collection contains numerous materials unavailable in Japan which bear their censorship status during the Occupation and are valuable historical materials to learn about children's literature, culture, and the publishing conditions of the time.

The Collection

The NDL acquired approximately 8,100 children's books microfilmed in color as part of a joint microfilming of the Prange Collection project with the University of Maryland. Acquisition began in 2006. Microfilming of picture books was completed in mid-2006.
Acquisition of story books began in 2007 and the project was completed in 2010.

Browsing Access

Because the collection has been added to the NDL Digital Collections, it is no longer provided on microfilm, but as digital images. These materials may be viewed at the ILCL and additionally may be viewed on computer terminals at the NDL Tokyo Main Library and the Kansai-kan. Copies of materials may also be made.

Search Methods

  1. NDL Search
    You can search by other similar materials and titles, among other search parameters. Click the "digitized contents" button (orange) on the Bibliographic Information screen for the content you wish to search.
    If you wish to narrow the search results to the Prange Children's Book Collection, add "VZ3-*" to the Call Number field, and hit "Search."
  2. NDL Digital Collections
    On the "Books" or "Prange Collection" screen, you can search by other similar materials and titles, among other search parameters.
    If you wish to narrow your search to the Prange Collection only, add "/VZ3" to the Call Number field on the advanced search screen on the "Books" page. If you click Top –Collections - "Prange Collection," "All the Items under this Category" and choose "Digitized Contents," "Prange Collection," and "Children's Books" from the items narrowed down on the left side of the screen.
  3. The Gordon W. Prange Children's Book Collection title List
    List of Titles in the Gordon W. Prange Children's Book Collection for which the ILCL Provides Digital Images
  4. Printouts of the Collection Title List
    Printouts of the (3.) collection title lists are available in the ILCL Researchers' Reading Room
  5. Catalog of the Gordon W. Prange Children's Book Collection
    "Guide to the Gordon W. Prange children's book collection "Gōdon W. purange bunko jidosho mokuroku: Merirando daigaku toshokan shozō: Senryōki ken'etsu jidō tosho 1945-1949" (Hisayo Murakami, Eiko Tani, UMI [2003]). (NDL Call Number: UP49-H55)

Related Sites

University of Maryland "The Prange Digital Children's Book Collection"
You can search all picture books and a majority of manga throughout the collection. While one may browse images of bibliography items and their front covers, access to the actual text and pictures is restricted to the University of Maryland campus.


The Gordon W. Prange Collection ("NDL Monthly Bulletin" No. 560, November 2007, pp. 1-15)
"Senryōka no kodomo bunka "1945-1949": Meriirando Daigaku shozō, Purange Bunko "Murakami Korekushon" ni saguru." Waseda Daigaku Senryōka no kodomo bunka '1945-1949' ten Jisshi Iinkai. Nichimai, May 2001. (NDL Call Number: GD1-G217) "Senryoka no jidosho ken'etsu : Purange bunko jido yomimono ni saguru. Shiryohen" Eiko Tani, Shin Dokushosha, May 2004. (NDL Call Number: UM71-H5)

Other Collections

We would like to acquaint you with an overview of distinctive materials owned by the ILCL and provide you with an explanation of search methods, as well as a bibliography.

Bilderbuch für Kinder ("A Picture Book for Children")

1790-1830 12 Volumes (German) [ILCL Call Number: Y11-A1215]

Excerpt from Volume 3, The "Der Granat-Apfel" (The Pomegranate) page

General Information

The world's first encyclopedia for children published by Friedrich Justin Bertuch (1747-1822) of Weimar, Germany (NDL Call Number: Y11-A1215). The formal title of the book is, "A picture book for children: containing a pleasant collection of animals, plants, flowers, fruits, minerals, costumes, and other instructive objects from the realms of nature, the arts, and the sciences"
Though it started publication in the form of booklets in 1790, these were compiled in 1792 to become Volume 1, and twelve volumes were published by 1830. (The ILCL has volumes published in 1792-1830). Matters in all the fields described above were explained in four languages (English, French, German, and Italian) and were accompanied by detailed, hand-colored drawings. The wealth of inserted hand-colored drawings was illustrated by distinguished young copperplate engravers and artists from the Geographisches Institut (Geographical Institute of Weimar) founded by Bertuch himself.
Contents ranged from the Seven Wonders of the World to ancient ruins, volcanoes, earthquakes, and other natural phenomena. There was no set theme for each volume. Thus, the page after living things, for example, might contain geography and the page after that might contain myths-- resulting in completely different themes lining up ad libitum with an index closing each volume. According to the preface of Volume 1, this was intentional, to prevent children from growing bored from reading.
A twenty-four volume set of commentaries for parents and teachers who teach children how to use this book (Ausführlicher Text zu Bertuchs Bilderbuche für Kinder (Bertuch's "A Picture Book for Children" in Further Detail) by Carl Philipp Funke (philosopher and educator 1752-1807) were added.


"Doitsu no kodomo no hon" Hiroshi Nomura. Hakusuisha, 1991. (NDL Call Number: KE177-E14)
Friedrich Justin Bertuch (1747-1822): Herausgegeben von Gerhard R. Kaiser und Siegfried Seifert; Redaktionelle Mitarbeit, Christian Deuling. Tübingen: M. Niemeyer, 2000. (NDL Call Number:YZ57-A141)

St. Nicholas

(U.S.A.) [ILCL Call Number Z57-A5]

Left: Cover of a biannual compilation
Right: St. Nicholas which contained Kipling's "Tiger! Tiger!" (1894)

Features of the Magazine

Called America's finest children's magazine (especially in the field of fiction), St. Nicolas featured writers like Alcott, Burnett, Kipling, and Mark Twain and illustrators such as Arthur Rackham and Howard Pyle, whose work influenced generations of children. The magazine enjoyed particular high acclaim during the tenure of its original editor, Mary Mapes Dodge.

Bibliographical Items: Changes in Magazine Title and Publisher

St. Nicholas: Scribner's Illustrated Magazine for Girls and Boys (vol.1, no.1, 1873-vol.8, no.12, 1881) Scribner & Co.
St. Nicholas: An Illustrated Magazine for Young Folks (vol.8, no.10, 1881-vol.57, no.7, 1930) The Century Co.
St. Nicholas for Boys and Girls (vol.57, no.8, 1930‐vol.67, no.4, 1940: vol.70, no.1‐no.4, 1943) Scholastic Pub. Co. (1930-1932); American Education Press (1932-1934); Educational Publishing Co. (1935-1940); St. Nicholas Magazine, Inc. (1943).
* We presume that volume numbers 68 and 69 were skipped.

Collection in the ILCL (as of September 28, 2015)

Library holds: 1(1):11.1873 - 67(2):12.1939, Library lacks: 17, 26, 42 (2), 58(8) (NDL Call Number: Z57-A5)
* Reprint ed. from Athena Press (Tokyo) in serialization (vol.1, no.1 (Nov.1873), 2007- )
(NDL Call Number: Z57-A30)

Research and Related Books

  1. Japanese Language Books
    "Amerika no jido zasshi 'Sento Nikorasu no kenkyū'" Sento Nikorasu Kenkyukai ed. and pub. (February 1987) Researchers' Reading Room open-access (NDL Call Number: KS184-E6 YZ-053-アメ)
  2. Journal Articles
    Sento Nikorasu' shiron - kodomo ni motomeru mono’, Mamiko Kishigami
    ("Shukutoku University Bulletin" Sequential serial number 20 [1986] pp.113-129.) (NDL Call Number: Z22-360)
    Sento Nikorasu' no kenkyū (1), (2)’, Mamiko Kishigami ("Bulletin of the College of Sociology Shukutoku University" Sequential serial number 32 [1998] pp. 241-258,
    Sequential serial number 33 [March 1993] pp. 197-214.)(NDL Call Number: Z22-360)
    St. Nicholas' from the ILCL foreign periodicals collection’, Yuri Chiyo ("The Window - the journal of the ILCL" Number 5, March 2005 pp. 32-33.)(NDL Call Number: Z71-E919)
  3. Non-Japanese Language Books
    St. Nicholas and Mary Mapes Dodge: the Legacy of a Children's Magazine Editor, 1873-1905 / edited by Susan R. Gannon, Suzanne Rahn and Ruth Anne Thompson / McFarland (c2004) Researchers' Reading Room open-access (NDL Call Number: YZ-B420;GYZ-053-B8)
    Children's Periodicals of the United States / edited by R. Gordon Kelly / Greenwood Press (1984).
    Researchers' Reading Room open-access (ILCL Call Number: KS181-A1; YZ1-A34; YZ-053-B1) -> Commentary available by Fred Erisman.

Internet Information

The Project Gutenberg EBook
The full text of selected volumes is available to the public, free of charge.

The Opie Collection (Microform materials)

General Information

The Opie Collection is a collection of 20,000 children's books amassed by the Opies, an English husband and wife. Currently, this collection is being housed by the Bodleian Library in Oxford. This collection spans the seventeenth to twentieth centuries and contains items from "The Arabian Nights' Entertainment" (1706, first edition of the English translation), to "The Tales of Peter Rabbit" (1901, first edition, private press), valuable books that Queen Victoria presented to her daughter Beatrice, chap-books (cheap, mass-market publications that appeared from the sixteenth to nineteenth centuries), coloring books from the 1950s, all the way up to comic strips.
Peter and Iona Opie were folklorists who were pioneers of research on nursery rhymes and children's books. In addition to helping with their research, they began collecting children's books because the importance of children's books was not well understood at the time and children's books were quite scarce, even in large libraries. Later, their research was recognized and they were presented with a degree from Oxford University. Beginning with "The Oxford dictionary of nursery rhymes" (2nd ed. 1997 YZ2-A58), they published a great many studies on nursery rhymes and children's books.

Search Methods

The ILCL has purchased and houses microfiched materials. While conversion of the 20,000 item collection to microfiche has been completed and the ILCL holds the full collection, these items are not searchable from the NDL Search.
Searches can be made by using the booklet (field-specific) "The Opie Collection of Children's Literature: a guide to the microfiche collection. Unit 1-59" (Available for perusal at the counter in the ILCL Researchers' Reading Room).
There is an index at the end of each unit which includes the author, the book title, and the Opie Number.

  1. The Opie Number Formation
    Opie + Field-specific Letter + Serial Number (e.g.: Opie A 158)
  2. Field-specific Letters
    The index is available at the Bodleian Library HP or the ILCL Researchers' Reading Room in print form as part of "The Opie Collection" file.
    Because the materials are microfiched in the order of their fields, the booklets also conform to that order. To ascertain in which specific unit a particular field is published, please refer to the index of Opie Numbers for each unit.


"Mazā gūsu" no sekaiten": Asahi Shinbunsha Tōkyō Honsha Kikaku Dai 1-bu ed., c1988 (NDL Call Number: UP74-E9)
"The Oxford companion to children's literature" "Okkusufōdo sekai jido bungaku hyakka": Humphrey Carpenter and Mari Prichard, Teruo Jingū (Translation supervisor) 1999. (NDL Call Number: KE112-G10) Includes a brief description of the collection in the heading about the Opies.
"The world of Mother Goose: The Opie Collection" (Reprint: The world of Mother Goose) 1993. (NDL Number: Y17-B5604) 30-volume set reprinted by Horupu Shuppan

Kodansha no ehon (Kodansha Picture Books)

What were "Kodansha no ehon"?

The Dai Nippon Yūbenkai Kodansha started publishing picture books in December 1936 targeting the reading population a step younger than the "Shōnen Kurabu" readership. Aiming for gorgeous picture books that would transform the magazine" from something one read to something one looked at," Kodansha commissioned the very best Japanese-style and Western-style illustrators of the time. It ceased being published in April 1942, and later was re-titled to "Kodomo ebanashi," continuing on until March 1944. Soon after the War, in October 1945, "Kodansha no ehon : Ippon no wara" was published, but publication was ended after issue number four. In February 1946, the title of the magazine was changed once again to "Kodomo ebanashi" and continued to be published until September 1958. Based on putting four volumes on the market simultaneously each month, including postwar re-publications, Kodansha boasted sales of 70 million volumes.

The Collection of "Kodansha no ehon" at the ILCL

The ILCL has 203 prewar volumes of "Kodansha no ehon" (cataloged as books in the ILCL), and "Kodomo ebanashi" up to March 1944 and its reprints (Both are cataloged as periodicals. NDL Call Number: Z32- B159) that it received as donations from Kodansha in 2002. There are many volumes missing from the postwar "Kodansha no ehon" collection, but we do house a certain amount. We do not possess "Kodansha no ehon : Ippon no wara".
Some of the prewar folktales and stories in the "Kodansha no ehon" series were republished in the same series after the war. In addition, in the "Gōrudo ban" (Golden Editions) and "Shin Kodansha no ehon," there are some versions with the original artwork but with prose rewritten by different authors as well as works with new artwork retold by new authors. In 1993 and 1995 a version of the series was published in English under the series title, "Kodansha Children's Classics."

Search Methods for "Kodansha no ehon"

As there is no detailed information posted on the NDL Search, please refer to "Kodomo ga yokunaru Kōdansha no ehon" no kenkyū: Kaisetsu to saimoku detabesu" Noriko Abe, Kazama Shobo, February 2011 (NDL Call Number: YU7-J2936) II "Kondansha no ehon" series detailed database with CD-ROM, and "Nihon jido bungaku daijiten" vol.3, Ōsaka Kokusai Jido Bungakukan ed. (IICLO). October 1993 (ILCL Call Number: KG2-E42) Kodansha no ehon (pp. 71-83). The contents of each of the 203 prewar volumes are searchable.
In addition, "Hajimete manabu Nihon no ehonshi II: jūgo-nen sensōka no ehon" Shin Torigoe, Mineruva Shobo, February 2002 (NDL Call Number: KC511-G98) Chapter 8, ""Kodansha no Ehon" no kōzai"(pp. 122-177) provides a detailed discussion of the historical changes in the series, and three fields: the lives of the greats, legends, and knowledge.

The Czech Children's Book Collection

General Information

This collection consists of 850 items, combining 218 items focusing on folktales and modern fairy tales from the former half of the twentieth century, with 623 items centering on the former collection of Eiichi Chino (description follows) from the latter half of the twentieth century. Besides the folklore fairy tale collections of Karel Jaromír Erben and Božena Němcová and twenty different versions of Jan Karafiát's "Broučci" (Fireflies, illustration on the right), the collection includes a considerable number of works by leading Czech writers such as Josef Lada, Karel Čapek, Josef Čapek, Václav Řezáč, František Hrubín, Vítězslav Nezval, and Bohumil Říha, among others. There are many books from the 20th century Czechoslovakian children's book publisher, Albatros, and its precursor, SNDK (Státní nakladatelství dětské knihy (State Publishing House of Children Books) Prague-based Albatros Publishing, Bratislava-based Mladé letá).
In addition to the two collections above, we continue to add to our Czech Republic children's book collection.

Eiichi Chino (1932-2002)

After graduating from the Russian Studies of Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, Eiichi Chino entered the B.A. program at The University of Tokyo and in 1958 and became the first exchange student between Japan and Czechoslovakia when he went to study at Charles University in Prague. Chino specialized in linguistics, Slavic languages, classical Slavic languages, and Czech. While teaching at Tokyo University of Education and Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, he left us many accomplished translations of Czech literature and essays.

Search Methods

This collection is not organized as a separate "Czech Children's Book Collection," so searches cannot be solely limited to the collection itself.
For tips on how to search the "Czech Children's Book Collection," please refer to the "Czech Children's Book Collection" (in Japanese).

Art Exhibition Catalogs Focusing on this Collection

"Door to the Czech Republic: The world of children's books: An Exhibition at the ILCL of the NDL" January 2008 (ILCL Call Number: KP266-J1) Exhibition Dates: January 26 - September 7, 2008

The Russian Children's Book Collection

General Information

This is the former collection of Kanako Tanaka (description follows), which, in addition to 3,700 items of children's literature chiefly from the Soviet period, includes picture books from the 1920s and 1930s. Aside from late Russian Imperial Period picture books by leading "Mir iskusstva (Мир иску́сства, World of Art)" illustrator, Ivan Bilibin, the collection includes picture books by the team of Vladimir Lebedev and Samuil Marshak, and experimental picture books by Russian Avant-Garde illustrators.The former collection of Tanaka chiefly consists of works from writers spanning the nineteenth to the twentieth centuries with the majority of them published by the (Soviet) state publishing house of children's literature (Detskaya Literatura) established in 1933. In addition, half of the collection is made up of folktales and folklore from the 15 republics and over 100 peoples of the former Soviet Union.

Please note that we continue to add Russian children's books in addition to the collection above.

Kanako Tanaka (1931-1999)

Kanako Tanaka was a translator and researcher of Russian children's literature. After graduating from the Russian Literature Department of Northeast Normal University (NENU) in the People's Republic of China, she researched and translated Russian children's literature and folktales while working as a tour conductor in the former Soviet Union region. In addition to translating more than 20 books, she published numerous papers in journals and her major works were anthologized posthumously as "Kanako no shigoto: ibunshū" (NDL Call Number: KP154-G11).

Search Methods

This collection is not organized as a separate "Russian Children's Book Collection", so searches cannot be solely limited to the collection itself. For tips on how to search the "Russian Children's Book Collection," please refer to the "Russian Children's Book Collection" (in Japanese).

Art Exhibition Catalogs Focusing on this Collection

"Russian children's literature: from folklore to contemporary fiction : An Exhibition at the ILCL of the NDL" March 2005 (NDL Call Number: KP151-H2)
Exhibition Dates : April 23, 2005 - September 18

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