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The Photographs of Sam Sanzetti
By: Courtesy of the Israeli Consulate in Shanghai
September 24, 2010
The Photographs of Sam Sanzetti

The Israeli Consulate in Shanghai recently posted many old photos of Shanghai on the Israeli Consulate’s official account on Sina Weibo – Israel in China – which were taken by Jewish photographer Sam Sanzetti from the 1920s to the 1950s.

Sam Sanzetti, whose real name was Sioma Lifshitz, arrived in Shanghai in 1922. After working for a short period as an apprentice for an American photographer, he opened his own studio in 1927 on 73 Nanjing Road. It was the best photo studio in Shanghai.

Sanzetti took photographs of people from all walks of life – celebrities, film stars, young couples, families and children.

Thirty years later in 1957, he left for Israel and carried in his luggage more than 20,000 photographs that he took in Shanghai. Sanzetti passed away in Israel in 1986.

Through their publication of the photos in the media, the Israeli Consulate in Shanghai managed to find some of the individuals who appeared in these photos.

To read the stories behind the images and to view the images in high resolution view the slideshow below or click through to the album on our Flickr page.

Sanzetti photo - Old Shanghai

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