Miyagi Network News vol.164

~The rescue operations in the devastated area have continued~

 The following are each area’s reports of rescuing historical materials and surveying materials’ whereabouts, which were held in the second half of March.

  • The rescue operation in Aikawa Elementary School in Ishinomaki City

On 23th March, we carried out the rescue operation for the school documents in Aikawa Elementary School in Kitakami-cho, Ishinomaki city. The urgent measures for those documents were done at the end of last August together with other school documents due to the request from Ishinomaki Education Board. Those of Aikawa Elementary School amounted to 31 books. After that, on 10th March, the secretariat office of the Miyagi Network received information that many documents remained in the school building which was damaged by the Earthquake. For this reason, we engaged in the operation with the permission of people concerned with the school.

The participants were Masashi Amano, a secretariat officer of the Miyagi Network, a member of our Network and a student from Miyagi Gakuin Women’s University. They took 37 boxes of documents out from the building and transferred them to out secretariat office. Since the next day, we have started to clean them up.

  • The rescue operation for the T family Archives in Ogatsu-cho, Ishinomaki City

On the same day of the rescue operation in Aikawa Elementary School, immediately after the rescue team left for the operation, we received the request for rescuing the T family Archives in Ogatsu-cho, from Jun Sasaki, a member of Ishinomaki Education Board. According to him, approximately 300 documents from the early modern time were preserved by him in the field. Therefore, we soon rang for the secretariat staff, who were carrying out the rescue operation in Alikawa Elementary School, and those documents were picked up by them on their way to secretariat office in Sendai.

Because one year had already passed, some of them had severely deteriorated, so that we are monitoring their condition as we put them in the freezer of the secretariat office.

  • The survey for damaged materials in Kurihara city

On 26th March, the survey for damaged historical materials of the Y family was carried out by Mr Mitsuo Goto, a voluntary member of the Miyagi Network. This was opened up by an owner who came to talk with the Society for Preservation of the Japanese Art Swords in Miyagi Prefecture, when the Society held the counselling service on January for the Art Swords damaged by the Earthquake and the Tsunami. In this survey we confirmed the present condition of the historical materials. Those involved many unidentified old documents; we will therefore hold the full-scale investigation after April.

This was the result that 2 organisations which treat and rescue different types of historical materials and cultural heritage shared common information, and because of that, we would confirm the existence of the new historical materials.

  • The rescue operation for old archives in Onagawa-cho

On 28th March, due to the request from the official of the board’s lifetime learning section, We carried out the rescue operation for documents in early modern times, which were discovered in the warehouse of town council. Sato and Amano, as secretariat officers of the Miyagi Network, visited the temporary office in the Onagawa municipal gymnasium, and confirmed the present condition of the documents, which amounted to a paper bag. Each documents were tightly adhered but only a few mould grew. We also transferred them to the secretariat office in Sendai and scheduled to carry out the urgent measures.


Even though one year already passed after the great disaster, we are very glad that the valuable historical materials are rescued, at the same time, we honestly surprised to that. The situation have been gradually calm down, and that may be why people start to pay attention with the historical materials. On the other hand, in terms of the situation of inland, the subsidised house-breaking was relatively delayed. Depends on the progress, we anticipate the increase of the number of operations for transference of historical materials from houses which will be dismantled. 

We appreciate your continuous cooperation and support for our activities in the next fiscal year. (written by Daisuke Sato)

NB: The photos are all from the homepage of the Miyagi Network for Preserving Historical Materials.



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

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