British Pathé and Reuters have created an online collection of 216 films, mostly black-and-white, on Yemen. These are short films, generally news reels, that provide a visual history of Yemen in much of the 20th century, both north and south.
Here is an example from 1964 of a Yemeni village…
In 1789 an Indian pilgrim stopped in Hodeidah and Mocha on his return to India. He provides a very brief account of Yemen, including a storm that almost sunk the ship he was on near Socotra. The full text is available here. I attach below the relevant sections.
Continue reading Hodeidah and Mocha in 1789
There are many films on Yemen online. One of these on Vimeo is called “Yemen Diary” and is a short collage by the docu-journalist Matjaz Krivic.
For other films about Yemen on Vimeo, click here.
There is a new edition of the Italian traveler’s El Yèmen, based on his travels to Ottoman Yemen in 1977-1978. Mohamed Shaaban writes about this book on Qantara.
The original edition from 1884 is available at archive.org.
One of the most impressive Yemeni sites for the culture and history of Aden and southern Yemen is alamree.net. You can literally spend hours exploring this rich site. As you can see in the above image from the main page, there is information on Aden itself, coffee and mountains in Yāfi‘ the Aden zoo and the mosque of al-‘Aydarūs. There is also a treasure trove of images and photographs on Aden, some of which are very old. More photographs and videos are also available on the Facebook site of Hussain Alamree.
Tawāhī in the 1960s
Ma‘alā sūq, 1920
Local dance in Shaykh ‘Uthmān, 1947
Qalb al-Yaman (The Heart of Yemen) is a book published in 1947 in Baghdad by the Iraqi military advisor Muḥammad Ḥasan. This is a fascinating account of Yemen about an Iraqi Military Mission to Yemen in 1940-1943 with details on Yemen at that time under the rule of Imām Yaḥyā. It is now available for reading online and downloadable.
first page of the author’s text
The text consists of 256 pages with a detailed table of contents, illustrations and a large map. The major chapters deal with Yemen’s geography and resources, history, the author’s travel experience to Yemen, the capital Ṣan‘ā’, Imām Yaḥyā, social life, major routes, local medicine, the government and soldiers, social and regional groups, women, marriage customs, festivals and greeting behavior, Yemenite Jews, the Iraqi advisors in Yemen, diplomatic relations and correspondence, Islamic sects, and his return to Iraq. There are numerous photographs, which unfortunately did not reproduce well in the publication.
photograph of Imām Yaḥyā (who did not want his image copied as noted in the bottom left)
beheading of soldier overseen by Sayf al-Islām Ibrāhīm
one of the earliest photographs of Yemeni bara‘
respective genealogies of Iraqī King Faysal and Yemeni Imām Yaḥyā
The World Digital Library of the U.S. Library of Congress has 273 items available online regarding Yemen. These include old books in various languages, several manuscripts from the Egyptian National Library and maps.
There is a translation just published by Stanford University Press of the 19th century travel account of Hayyim Habshush. This is entitled A Vision of Yemen: The Travels of a European Orientalist and His Native Guide, A Translation of Hayyim Habshush’s Travelogue. The translator is Alan Verskin. Details are here.
Between 1825 and 1828 an English lady named Anne Katharine Elwood accompanied her husband, a colonel in the British service, to India. On this trip they stopped at Hodeidah an Mocha on the Red Sea coast of Yemen. Her account is quite detailed, including her visits with women in Hodeidah and Mocha. Her full text, published in 1830, is entitled Narrative of a Journey Overland from England by the Continent of Europe, Egypt, and the Red Sea to India, including a Residence There, and Voyage Home, in the Years 1825, 26, 27, and 28. The discussion of Yemen is in Volume 1, which is available at archive.org.
For Part #1, click here. For Part #2, click here. For Part #3, click here. For Part $4, click here.