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Pictures From Then And Now

Hirado Shopping Street

This photo taken in 1937 shows the Hirado shopping street in the Kihikida neighborhood as it was being paved. Although the type of businesses and buildings have changed little by little, the function as a shopping street still remains.

A View of Hirado Port from Sakigata Park

This is a view of Hirado Port from Sakigata Park, located on top of the slope behind the port. Since the seaside road is completed, the photo must have been taken after 1935. It shows many cargo ships called kihansen (machine sail boats) that frequented the port at that time.

Hirado Xavier Memorial Church

The photo shows the Hirado Xavier Memorial Church built in 1931 and part of the seaside road, so it was taken in the mid 1930’s or later. Amidst the constantly changing townscape, you can see some precious buildings, like the church, that remain the same.

Matsura Historical Museum

The Tsurumine Residence (now the Matsura Historical Museum) was built in 1892. The photo was probably taken in the 1910’s or 1920’s, and the gate on the stairway is different from the current roofed gate. Also distinctive are the large pine trees on the precinct.

Enmeicho Neighbourhood

The streets of the Enmeicho (now Urancho) neighbourhood were once the busiest in Hirado, with traders lining the streets. The photo was taken in 1957. Today, the street is visited by tourists heading to the Matsura Historical Museum, the Giant Cycad, the Hexagonal Well or Sakigata Park.

Hirado Port and Kuroko Island

This is a view of Hirado Port and Kuroko Island probably taken around the mid-1930’s. Today, in addition to the pier and parking lot, the Hirado Dutch Trading Post, which tells the history of international trade in the 17th century, has been reconstructed at the entrance of the port.

Hirado Shopping Street

This is a shot of the shopping street in the Sakigata neighbourhood, probably taken around the mid-1950’s. It shows people passing through the town as well as a restaurant and a fruit and vegetable store.

Kameoka Park

The main keep and surrounding turrets of the current Hirado Castle were rebuilt in the 1970’s. Since they can’t be seen in the photo, this must be a view of the Kameoka Shrine approach from before that time. At that time, the park was lined with large cherry trees and pine trees.

View of the Area Around Hirado Library

This is the school building of the Hirado High School for Girls taken in the early Showa period (1930’s or 1940’s). Today, the Hirado City Library has been built here. Kuroko Island can be seen in the background, but the land reclamation for the current red-roofed cultural center has not yet been carried out.

Saiwai Bridge

Saiwai Bridge is a single-arched stone bridge built in 1702, which has seen several rounds of maintenance work throughout the years, including restacking of the side walls around 1860 and repaving the stone road surface in the mid-Meiji period (1880’s or 1890’s).