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Downtown Historical Buildings

FORMER SAIKEN TEXTILE MILL
This sawtooth roof mill was constructed of stone in 1927. Originally, there were 3 segments (a portion of the building composed of one "tooth" of the sawtooth roof), but later, it was extended to 5. When Naka-dori (road along the side of the mill) was constructed, the western end of the mill was demolished.
FORMER SUMIZEN TEXTILE MILL
Constructed in 1922, Sumizen is the only reinforced concrete textile mill in the city of Kiryu. Following its use as a mill, the building was next used as a warehouse. Eventually, the building was taken over by the city of Kiryu and leased to artists as studio space. From 1992 to 1995, Sumizen was occupied by the Japanese sculptor, Kakei Goro. Subsequently, it was leased to the Art Coordinator, Yamazaki Minori and a group of website designers. Currently, another artist is now in residence and it continues to be used as a studio.
MORI, LTD
This collection of buildings was constructed around 1915 by a financial institution. The roofing is copper and the siding is composed of white ceramic tiles, lending a western ambiance to the buildings. Currently, this site is used as the business office of Mori, Ltd.
FORMER KITAGAWA TEXTILE MILL (MURINKAN)
The majority of the structures on this compound were constructed during the Taisho Era (1912 - 1926). Included are a sawtooth roof mill; the main residence; an earthen-walled storehouse; and an adjacent residence which has burned down. The compound is laid out in a long narrow formation of some 40 ken (1 ken = 5.965 ft) in depth and remains in good condition.
Currently, the sawtooth roof mill has been converted to an herb classroom and store, and studio space for artists and artisans.
FORMER SOGA TEXTILE MILL
Constructed in 1922, this sawtooth roof mill is constructed of "Oyaishi" stone masonry. At the time of construction, there was also a wooden sawtooth roof mill, dating from 1917, on its western side. This wooden mill fell into disuse and was eventually torn down.
At one time, there were some 9 different stone masonry sawtooth roof mills in the Honcho 1 chome and 2 chome area, however, the Soga Mill is the only one remaining.
FORMER KANAZEN BUILDING
This building was constructed in 1926 as commercial space for lease when Kiryu flourished as a textile manufacturing center. There are 4 floors above ground and one floor below. This building has become a symbol of Kiryu's former prosperity.
Kanazen was one of the very first reinforced concrete buildings to be constructed in Gunma Prefecture. The first floor exterior is stone and from the second floor up, the exterior is tile. In addition, the doors, window casements, pillars, etc. are all elaborately decorated. The interior light fixtures have been changed and aluminum window frames have since been installed. Nevertheless, the overall silhouette of the building remains the same.
At present, several commercial enterprises occupy the building.
MORIHIDE TEXTILES (TEXTILE MUSEUM "YUKARI")
Morihide Textiles is an operating textile mill. There is a Textile Museum on the compound containing a collection of historic weaving looms and other materials, all of which recount Kiryu's textile manufacturing heritage. The museum's loom and other devices range from the Meiji Era (1868-1912) to the present. There are over 1200 items exhibited.
In addition, visitors can actually experience weaving and dyeing while viewing special exhibits. There is a museum shop as well. On weekdays, visitors can observe the latest weaving loom technology in use at the operating mill.
Admission is \700 for adults and university students; \500 for junior high school students; \380 for elementary school students. The museum is closed on Mondays.
ASH BEAUTY SALON
Constructed as a textile mill, this building was later used as a warehouse. Since 2000, the building underwent remodeling and subsequently became a beauty salon. Constructed in the image of a shipyard dockhouse, the bright red window casements and doors make a bold statement. The building itself is "Oyaishi" stone masonry with a sawtooth roof and has become a trendy beauty salon.


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