The ridge plate shows that this building was completed in 1907. It is one of the oldest wooden bank buildings in Japan.
The building was designed with great attention to detail and one of a few western-style buildings in Meiji era (1868 - 1912). It was registered in the list of cultural properties of Kyoto City in 1994.

at Kawaramachi-Shiokoji
The left two-story building is old Yanagihara bank.
(At the time of photographed, it was Iwata store.)

Yutaka Takahashi, Tombo Publication.

Construction time, designers and constructors

Yanagihara Bank ridge plate

The ridge plate is preserved. It is a board or the square lumber on which is written the date of construction, the names of construction workers, and a short prayer. It is attached to the ridgepole or the bundle pillar of the building, when completing the framing or re-tiling the roof. It shows that the framing of our building was completed in June, 1907(Meiji 40). Therefore, we think that the building was completed months after that, in the autumn or the end of 1907.
The designer's name "kichinosuke Yoshikawa" is written on the ridge plate. "Kamekichi Tateyama" was the carpenter. It appears that "kichinosuke Yoshikawa" was the managing director of the Inarichotai Co. established in November, Meiji 40. But his career isn't clear. What kind of building activities he was involved in besides this building is also unknown.

The historical value of the building

In Kyoto, the building of Mitsui Bank was built in 1904-year (Meiji 37), and Sumitomo Bank in the next year. These were the oldest western style bank buildings in Kyoto. However they no longer exist. The buildings of Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank, Ltd. Kyoto branch and old Bank of Japan Kyoto branch (present The museum of Kyoto) were completed in 1906-year (Meiji 39). they are still the oldest existing bank buildings in Kyoto. When compared nationwide, there are very few 20 remaining from the bank buildings Meiji period. There are a very few remnants of local banks left in Japan and Yanagihara Bank building is a very rare and precious building.
It seems that the designer Kichinosuke Yoshikawa had not learned fully western building design techiniques. Many of the building details are very simular with little variation. Although, the building as a whole is a cohesive design. In particular, the design of the stair rail and the ceiling of the ground floor is satisfactory ,and we can conclude that he studyed the component in detail.
When modern building are build in Japan, we judge them by modern architect trends. But this building represents an example of regional architect design cultured by our cimmunity (local area).

Old Yanagihara Bank just before transferring


Structure formwooden two-story (partly, one-story) building with hipped roof and gabled building with tile roof.
Building area88.58 m2
Total floorage164.50 m2
Eaves height7.66m
Building investigation periodfrom July 1994 to March 1995
Dismantling construction periodfrom March 1995 to August 1995
Restoration construction periodfrom August 1996 to October 1997

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