Tokyobling's Blog

Kuramochi Primary School

Posted in Places by tokyobling on April 21, 2012

For an old building lover like me, there’s few places in Japan like the Meijimura in Aichi prefecture right in the centre of Japan, a park where buildings come to retire. Actually it is an outdoor architectural museum where buildings torn down in different areas around the country is rescued and reassembled. Most of the buildings in the park are from the Meiji era of Japanese history, 1868-1912. This building is a beautiful old school building, although not all of it remains today there’s enough to try and imagine what it must have been like for the local children who first moved into this school house. It’s full name is “Mie Prefectural Normal School and Kuramochi Primary School”, and it was originally erected in 1888 in the city of Tsu, and later moved to Nabari in Mie prefecture and finally to this park in 1973. It’s a beautiful combination of the mid-Meiji era western and traditional Japanese building styles. I wish my school had been as beautiful as this! Not much of the interior remains but one of the class rooms were partly recreated and even though it’s more than a hundred years earlier, it actually looks pretty similar to the elementary school I went to. If you are ever in Aichi prefecture with a day or two to spare, Meijimura is a great place to visit! More photos to come!

Cathedral of St. John – Meijimura

Posted in Places by tokyobling on December 15, 2011

If you are into old buildings, like me, a trip to Meijimura in Aichi prefecture is a must. Here’s the lovely Cathedral of St. John (聖ヨハネ教会堂), designed by American architect James McDonald Gardiner (1857-1925) and originally erected in Kyoto in 1907, transplanted here in 1964. It’s an interesting mix of traditional romanesque brick and a tudor style timber frame second floor, possibly for reasons of stability (brick buildings generally fare poorly in earthquakes). Unfortunately there was a wedding going on so I had to be happy with this outside picture.

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