When I was looking for a dish to display my Chocolate Covered Pretzels, I pulled this small dish out of my china cabinet and thought it would be the perfect size. It’s funny though, I can’t remember where it came from. I turned it over and the mark on the back was “Made in Occupied Japan” with a small elephant head in the center. I have several china figurines marked “Made in Occupied Japan” that I received from my paternal grandmother, so I’m assuming this must have been a piece I got when her daughter, my Aunt Mabel, passed away. Looking at it, I didn’t know what type of dish it was or what is was used for. I started by googling “made in occupied japan elephant mark” and although I couldn’t find this specific mark, I did learn some things about “Made in Occupied Japan”. The stamp “Made in Occupied Japan” refers to the time period 1945-1952 when the Allies occupied Japan. In order for Japan to export goods from their country, they had to agree to mark 50% of their goods with “Made in Occupied Japan”. As far as the dish itself, just by looking at images of pieces of china with the elephant mark, I was able to identify this piece as a “Lemon Dish”. I couldn’t find anything more about lemon dishes, so I assume the dish was used for exactly what it’s name implies; to place lemon wedges on the table. Most pieces of china or porcelain marked with the “Made in Occupied Japan” have very little value and the value they do have comes from the short period of manufacture time. To me, the monetary value means little, the value comes from the hands of my loved ones who handled it before me.
Made in Occupied Japan