NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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島松駅逓 Shimamatsu-ekitei Old Shimamatsu Communication Station

Jp En

Communication Stations equipped with a station house, horses and men was built to provide transportation and accommodation services. They played an important role during the pioneering period of Hokkaido.

Shimamatsu Communication Station was built in 1873, when the Sapporo Main Route was opened to traffic. After 1884, the station was operated by Nakayama Kyuzo, who settled in the Shimamatsu area of present-day Kitahiroshima City and who was called the father of rice farming in a cold region.

Shimamatsu Communication Station was where Dr. Clark spoke the famous phrase “Boys be ambitious” to his students, who got together at this station to see him off on April 16 in 1881, when he stopped here on his way back to his country.

It is the oldest existing station house in Hokkaido. The station was designated as a National Historical Site as a precious example that shows arrangement of a communication station at that time.
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草津宿本陣 Kusatujuku-honzin Kusatsu-juku Honjin

Jp En

Kusatsu-juku is the 52nd of the 53 post stations along the Tōkaidō from Edo to Kyoto. From 1635 to 1870, a period of 235 years, Kusatsu-juku Honjin was a special inn used only by nobility and government officials.

Kusatsu-juku lies at the branch of the Tōkaidō and Nakayama roads and there used to be over 100 inns here. Kusatsu-juku Honjin is the largest of its type still standing. Names like Asano Naganori and Kira Yoshinaka can be seen on the register.

The head of the honjin, the Daifukucho, kept a record of visitors from 1692 to 1874, a total of 182 years. There is one register book per year, and in total there are 182 books. In Kusatsu-juku, there were 2 honjin, 2 sub-honjin, and about 70 inns.

Of all these, the Tanaka Shichizaemon Honjin has kept to its original appearance. In 1949, it was designated as an important cultural asset and attracted many people to the world of Edo. It was restored and opened to the public in April 1996.
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