Vestiges of Japan's history as a resource-rich country

Vestiges of Japan's history as a resource-rich country

Vestiges of Japan's history as a resource-rich country

Did you know that, long ago, there was a vast amount of untouched mineral resources in Japan? There is a mining town in Asago called Ikuno. In the 16th century, it was said that "one who rules Ikuno will rule the heavens." From the Meiji period to the early days of the Showa period, the mining and manufacturing industry grew to be Japan's foremost industry, with Asago as its focus. Come tour the industrial legacy of Japan's transformation from the Edo era to the Meiji era in this place that straddles the border of eras.

09 : 30

Ikuno Silver Mine

Ikuno Silver Mine

This is the preserved site of the Ikuno Silver Mine, which was controlled by the leaders of Japan throughout its history. Records state that silver was first mined here in 1543.

About 10 mins

10 : 40

Ikuno Townscape

Ikuno Townscape

There are streets here that show the lifestyles of people back in the period when mining was still flourishing in Japan. Here, you can feel the spirit of accepting the new Western culture even before it spread throughout Japan, as well as the pride of the locals who have upheld this spirit.

At Izutsuya, the Company House, and the Former Asada Residence, visitors can see the traditional architecture of Japanese houses up close. These places also serve as tourist information centers, and visitors can also hear about how life was back in those days.

About 20 mins

13 : 30

Mikobata Cast Iron Bridge

Mikobata Cast Iron Bridge

This sturdy cast iron bridge was built in 1881 in order to facilitate the transportation of silver by horse carriages. This is the oldest cast iron bridge in Japan.

About 5 mins

13 : 40

Mikobata Ore Processing Site Ruins

Mikobata Ore Processing Site Ruins

This is the ruins of the mill that processed silver ores transported from Ikuno Silver Mine. It was said to have been the biggest processing mill in East Asia about 100 years ago.