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FUNCTION: Museums to unite in preserving Japanese sports history

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A sports gallery in Tokyo is blazing a trail in the production of a connect with comparable companies throughout Japan, intending to shield and also maintain useful items of the country’s sports history.

That there is no common system under which the items of souvenirs, consisting of medals and also recommendation products, are arranged is a significant problem to individuals operating at museums. Additionally, there is no global listing kept by any type of public company that suggests which organization holds any type of specific item.

File picture programs Japanese Olympians taking part in the Stockholm Olympics in 1912 for the very first time. (Kyodo)

To correct the circumstance, the Prince Chichibu Memorial Sports Museum and also Library strategies by March following year to hold a seminar with around 300 establishments that keep sporting activity souvenirs to review the relevance of these things and also stress and anxiety the demand to maintain collections from being separated or shed.

“There are many types of materials from sports history. They are scattered in many parts (of the country), and only a few people understand their importance,” stated Sachiko Niina, a manager of the Tokyo gallery. “We need a system that prevents these materials from being dispersed.”

Niina, 41, included that she likewise desires to work with various other programs, consisting of creating individuals’s knowledge and also expertise of showing off keepsakes, and also hold research study jobs in Japan and also abroad relevant to past Olympics and also Paralympics.

While most museums in the nation are devoted to one sporting activity — one of the most noticeable in Japan concentrated on sumo, football, and also baseball — it is thought that smaller sized country establishments hold historic items that belonged to professional athletes from the corresponding locations.

In a different task, the Tokyo gallery desires to develop an electronic archive with various other establishments, such as firms, colleges, sports bodies and also towns.

The strategy is to establish a data source that will certainly enable individuals to look for particular things and also papers without having to literally traveling to where they are saved or shown.

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The Prince Chichibu Memorial Sports Museum and also Library opened up in 1959 inside the old National Stadium to add to the advancement of sporting activity in the nation and also display screen things of historic note.

However, the gallery has actually been shut considering that the arena was destroyed and also the brand-new National Stadium improved the website in the lead up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which were delayed in March due to the unique coronavirus pandemic.

The gallery will certainly be relocated to a various location yet the area and also timing of its resuming stay up in the air.

The gallery just recently uncovered that an Olympic medal in its collection thought to have actually been the initial won by a Japanese was likely the 2nd.

It is currently believed the medal is a silver granted to Seiichiro Kashio in guys’s tennis increases at the 1920 Summer Games in Antwerp, Belgium.

The location of Japan’s initial medal, a songs silver won earlier by Kashio’s increases companion Ichiya Kumagai at the exact same video games, stays unidentified.

An Olympic silver medal held at the Prince Chichibu Memorial Sports Museum and also Library. (Kyodo)

There is likewise an instance in which a thing of historic worth was swiped from the Tokyo gallery.

In 2010, a champion medal won by German Hermann Weingartner at the initial contemporary Olympics in Athens was swiped throughout an exhibit at the gallery. The medal had actually been a present from the late gymnast Yukio Endo, that won the guys’s well-rounded occasion at the 1964 Tokyo Games.

While the system of securing and also preserving sports-relevant things is thought about presently inadequate, specialists claim they simply have to appearance to Japan’s next-door neighbor South Korea for an instance of exactly how to do it well. There, medals and also tools are signed up as social buildings.

“As for medals, they are useful for people who watched the competitions to recall the athlete, but that is not enough,” Niina stated. “Preserving other materials, documents, and books about the performance and efforts that led to winning a medal will also enable documenting the performance multidimensionally.”

Yuji Kurihara, the vice supervisor of the Kyoto National Museum, likewise highlighted developing a network of museums to shield historic items.

“Japan doesn’t understand that historical resources related to sports are cultural properties,” he stated. “Now that it has been more than 100 years since the country first participated in the Olympics, it should reach the understanding that sport is also culture.”


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