NAGOYA (Kyodo) Farmers smile on their way to work and people grin in front of an old school about to be closed. A bulldozer plows down a house with a garden full of flowers.

These are just some of the more than 80,000 scenes of the abandoned Gifu village of Tokuyama captured by photographer Tazuko Masuyama, who died March 6 at age 88.

About 13,000 villagers from 466 families had to leave Tokuyama in 1987 to make way for the Tokuyama Dam. The region is now a part of Ibigawa-cho.

“The old lady photographer” became a celebrity when she began taking photographs of her village in the 1980s at age 61.

Masuyama wanted to capture life in the village for her husband, Tokujiro, still hoping he would return from Burma, where he was sent during the war.

Even after the amateur photographer left the village in 1985, she visited the dam site to photograph the workers.

The village Masuyama has preserved in her pictures is due to be swallowed up by water in the autumn, when the dam will be completed.

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