Ibaraki Network News Letter Vol.23

[Survey for the damaged historical materials in Kashima City]

In Kashima City, the Tsunami, which flooded inland from Kashima Port, reached 120cm height. For this reason, Ryuzoin Temple in the Nagasu area had some damage to properties, such as the Buddhist paintings, death registers and other documents of recored from the 20th century. The detailed report of the rescue operation for these materials is published in the journal of “Japanese History(日本歴史)” vol.762.   

On 26th November, the Government Agency for Cultural Affairs, the Tokyo National Research Institute for Cultural Properties and the Japan Society for the Conservation of Cultural Property visited Ryuzoin Temple in order to discuss the restoration plan for the Buddhist paintings. Additionally, on the same day, Prof Shu Takahashi, a member of the Ibaraki Network for Preserving Historical Materials, returned the death registers to the temple, which had been repaired. Also, Associate Prof. Tetsuya Shirai handed back the lists of 260 recorded documents to the people in the community. Moreover, after preservation we made lists for the tens of old documents which identified the old families near Ryuzoji Temple. Those documents were discovered in the process of work undertaken at the Temple.

In the survey of the Buddhist paintings, we discussed the repairing methods by closely examining the condition of the de-acidification treatment which we had done before. The death resisters, which had been soaked by the Tsunami, had vastly improved after treatment by Ibaraki University; they were therefore returned with image data. The documents of the old families were found during the rescue operation at the end of July, and after being dried in the shade for a long time also resulted in an improved condition. As a result of making data lists, we confirmed 13 documents. The oldest document was concerned with the land survey of Nagasu Village in 1631, and the others were concerned with the direct vassals of the Tokugawa Shogunate in 1826, and some community documents from the early 20th century.

By doing these surveys, the rescue operations in Kashima City came to the end of the first stage. Hereafter, we would like to support the community people to learn about those documents and preserve them by themselves. (written by Tetsuya Shirai)


The lecture and photo and special exhibitions of rescue operations by the Ibaraki Network for Preserving Historical Materials will be held in Ibaraki University! Please come and see us!

  • The rescue activities for Ibaraki Prefecture’s historical materials damaged by the East Japan Earthquake
  • Date: 14th December, 2:00pm to 4:00pm
  • Place: the Ibaraki University Auditorium in Mito Campus
  • Lecturer: Shu Takahashi

2.The exhibition

  • Photo exhibition: The rescue activities for damaged historical materials and cultural properties in Ibaraki Prefecture
  • Special exhibition: The wonderland within Fusuma –from the historical materials rescued from devastated area
  • Date: From 14th to 19th of December, 11:00am to 5:00pm
  • Place: the exhibition hall of Ibaraki University Library

About Nerwork for Historical Materials
A volunteer group for preserving Cultural Heritage suffered from natural disasters

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