Tracing the origin of connections between the Ueno and Hongo areas: Excavation of Yayoi remains by scholars from the University of Tokyo

Following the previous article, this time we try to trace the origin of Ueno-Hongo area coordination from the archaeological excavation activities by scholars and researchers from the University of Tokyo since the late 19th century. These people include Tsuboi Shogoro (1863-1913), Shirai Mitsutaro (1863-1932), Arisaka Shozo (1868-1941) and later generations.

Tsuboi, Shirai and Arisaka investigated Yayoi earthenwares at Yayoi 2-chome in 1884. In their early twenties at the time of the investigation, Tsuboi and Shirai were studying at the Faculty of Science of the University of Tokyo; Arisaka was a student from the Faculty of Engineering. The three would later become professors at the University. Tsuboi is particularly accredited for his great contribution to the development archaeology and anthropology in Japan.

In the mid-1970s, the Yayoi 2-chome site underwent further survey by the archaeology and anthropology departments of the University of Tokyo. A few more artifacts of archaeological value were found near this site and proved habitation of Yayoi people and civilization in this area. In 1976, these remains were designated as a national historical site. In 1986, a stone tablet commemorating the investigations was established between the Yayoi campus and Asano campus. In 2001, boat-shaped wooden coffins from Yayoi period were further excavated in this area by the University’s Buried Cultural Property Research Unit. In 2006, two explanation panels were set up, one near the main gate of Asano campus and the other near the No. 9 Engineering Building by the Facilities Department of the University.

Explanation panel about Yayoi-2-chome site investigations near the No. 9 Engineering Building

Explanation panel about Yayoi 2-chome site investigations near the No. 9 Engineering Building

Explanation panels about boat-shaped wooden coffin near the main gate of Asano Campus

Explanation panels about boat-shaped wooden coffin near the main gate of Asano Campus

Stone tablet commemorating the investigation of Yayoi earthenwares, between the Yayoi campus and Hongo campus of the University of Tokyo

Stone tablet commemorating the investigation of Yayoi earthenwares, between the Yayoi campus and Hongo campus of the University of Tokyo

Today the University Museum at the University of Tokyo keeps the Yayoi earthenwares discovered here in its collection. The Interfaculty Initiative in Information Studies, The University of Tokyo, has conducted archival research about the Tsuboi family since 2006. This archive includes letters, photographs, diaries, toys, death mask, and architectural documents of the residential house of his elder son, Tsuboi Seitaro (坪井誠太郎 1893-1986). Their digital images are plotted on maps and accessible from Digital Cultural Heritage <http://crarc.iii.u-tokyo.ac.jp/>. In 2011, the main library of the University hosted an exhibition, Tsuboi Shogoro and the maniac world in Meiji and introduced Tsuboi’s extraordinary personality and life. The University of Tokyo has been continuously researching over the archaeological remains in the area and the prominent scholars that contributed to the remarkable findings.

Reference:

小沢信男, 富田均, 『東京の池』, 東京: 作品社, 1989.

東京大学埋蔵文化財調査室, 「向ヶ岡弥生町News Letter」, http://tousyoku.org/archive/向ヶ岡弥生町ニュースレター(原祐一さん)/向ヶ岡弥生Vol.7.pdf, 2013年12月1日, 2015年1月アクセス。

東京大学埋蔵文化財調査室, 「本郷キャンパス・浅野地区に遺跡解説板を設置」, http://www.aru.u-tokyo.ac.jp/asano_panel.htm, 2015年1月アクセス。

東京大学大学院情報学環-Digital Cultural Heritage, http://crarc.iii.u-tokyo.ac.jp/, 2015年1月アクセス。

東京大学総合図書館, 「坪井正五郎と明治のヲタク的世界」, http://www.lib.u-tokyo.ac.jp/tenjikai/josetsu/2011_07/, accessed January 2015.

西野嘉章, 「明治37年の坪井正五郎: 人類学教室標本展覧会をめぐって」, http://www.um.u-tokyo.ac.jp/publish_db/1997Archaeology/04/40500.html, accessed January 2015.

作成者  | 2015-09-21 (月)
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