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Kamegaoka Site

Aomori

There are still many unearthed ancient articles
that have mesmerized foreign fans

Kamegaoka Site is a settlement site of the Final Jomon Period (1000 B.C. to 300 B.C.) on a hill in the southwest of the Tsugaru Plain that spread over Tsugaru City, Aomori. The site became a Registered National Historical Site in 1944. The site was discovered in 1622 when clay figures and earthenware were found during construction work of Kameoka Castle by Tsugaru Nobuhira who was the lord of Tsugaru clan. Since 1889, excavation on the hill top and valleys revealed shakokidogu (clay figures that look like wearing sunglasses), rantai lacquerware with red lacquer patterns on black-lacquered body and glass beads among other things. Their delicate work and perfection show the excellence of the ancient artistry. In 1957 a shakokidogu without left leg was found during farm work, designated as an Important Cultural Property of Japan in 1957 and now stored in Tokyo National Museum.

The value of articles unearthed at Kamegaoka has been well-known at home and abroad since the Edo Period. They are called "Kamegaoka-mono" that were very popular among collectors. Some of them were sold far away to Holland. During the Meiji Period, many famous litterateurs and intellectuals who were attracted by unearthed articles visited the site. There is a record that an exhibition was held in Edo (Tokyo). Today, a white monument representing a clay figure stands at the excavation site. Unearthed articles are exhibited a little distance away in Jomon kan, Kizukuri Jomon Kan and Jomon House Museum "Karuko" next to the town office.

Information

Address: Kizukuri-Kamegaoka, Tsugaru, Aomori
Phone: 0173-42-2111(Tsugaru City Commerce, Industry and Tourism Division)
Directions: (Train) Walk 5 minutes from Kizukuri Station on the JR Gono Line (one hour and 15 minutes by air from Haneda and 3 hours from Aomori Airport,) take a bus of Jusan Line at Tsukuri Keisatsusyo Mae, ride 23 minutes, get off at Kamegaoka and walk 8 minutes. (Car) One hour from Namioka Interchange on the Tohoku Expressway.

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