Fukuoka City
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LastUpDate: October 1, 2009

Hakata Culture vol.21

Fukuoka City Retrospect

Fukuoka City Retrospect Picture

Fukuoka City was established on April 1, 1889, which means it is celebrating its 120th anniversary as a municipality this year. The Fukuoka City Museum is now holding an exhibit that offers a retrospective look of the city’s history over those 120 years. Hakata was a much smaller city in 1889, and its territory covered only parts of the current Chuo and Hakata wards. The population at its founding was 50,847. The other Kyushu cities that officially become municipalities that year were Kurume, Saga City, Nagasaki City, Kumamoto City, and Kagoshima City. Fukuoka City had the third-highest population in Kyushu, behind Kagoshima City and Nagasaki City. The core institutions of national government were concentrated in Kumamoto City.

The exhibit is divided into two sections-one consisting of old photographs from that time to the present, and the other consisting of other materials. It shows how the city grew and the lives of its residents changed over the years. Being displayed for the first time is a large cannon, nicknamed “Don” for the sound it made, which boomed every day at noon from the Meiji period until 1931. There is also an exhibit of illustrations by the artist Hori Shizen depicting daily life in Hakata during the Meiji period.

Another first-time exhibit presents aerial photos taken during the 1930s that show the lovely streets of the city before they were devastated by the great air raid 64 years ago. Museum visitors should make it a point to see the photographs and other materials related to the Nishitetsu Lions baseball team and its great success in the 1950s. Running concurrently with the museum’s exhibit is the screening of films set on location in Hakata. One is Waru he no Chosen (1967), part of the Abashiri Bangaichi series starring the well-known Ken Takakura. It has scenes shot at the Atago shrine in Nishi Ward and other locations in the city. Another is the baseball movie Tetsuwan Toshu--Inao Monogatari, which presents the exploits of famed Nishitetsu Lions pitcher Kazuhisa Inao. A third is Hakatakko Junjo, a movie version of the comic drawn by Hosei Hasegawa, who is now director of the Hakatamachiya Furusatokan museum. All three films are in the collection of the Fukuoka City Public Library.

The museum exhibit does not focus only on bygone Fukuoka, however. There is also a faithfully reproduced model of today’s city rendered on a scale of one thousandth. You’ll be sure to enjoy this exhibit, whether you’ve been here all your life or are a new arrival. It’s open until Sunday, November 8. Check the museum’s website for details.

 A public relations manager
 Kimiyo Sasaki

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 また64年前に福岡の街を焼け野が原にした福岡大空襲前、美しかった市街地を写した昭和10年代の航空写真も初公開。他にも、福岡市民に大興奮をもたらしてくれた昭和30年代の西鉄ライオンズ大活躍の写真や資料も見逃せません。見逃せないといえば、展覧会期間中に、福岡・博多の街を舞台にした映画も上映されます。1本は高倉健さん主演の「網走番外地 悪への挑戦」、西区の愛宕神社など市内各所でロケがありました。それに「鉄腕投手・稲尾物語」、もちろん西鉄ライオンズの稲尾和久投手をモデルにした野球映画、そしてご存じ「博多っ子純情」、現在「博多町家ふるさと館」館長である長谷川法世さんが描いた漫画の映画化、これで博多っ子の実態が分かります。(これらの映画はいずれも福岡市総合図書館にも所蔵されているものです。)


  福岡市広報課長 佐々木 喜美代