There are so many spectacular fireworks festivals in Japan which is why some places are even dedicated to their history. One particular place called Ryogoku, in Tokyo, is said to be the origin of Japanese fireworks. It displays animated fireworks during summer and is also home to a facility exhibiting fireworks history since the beginning of time. This facility is called Ryogoku Fireworks Museum which and it is located nearby the Sumida River. Let’s check it out!
Japanese fireworks started in 1549. It was a time when guns and powders had begun to be introduced in the country. It has been recorded that the first shogun of the Edo Period, Tokugawa Ieyasu, allowed the importation and display of fireworks for the purpose of entertainment upon witnessing some fireworks displays from the castle. It then became a trend which showcased most of the displays on the Sumida River such as an old festival done with fireworks to drive evil spirits away.
Ryogoku Fireworks Museum is accessible from the west entrance of Ryogoku Station. It exhibits several historic materials from photos, brochures, and books from the past. These are primarily related to fireworks history from the Showa Period (1926-1989) up to the present. You’ll be able to come across fireworks balls, launchers and happy coats (baggy-sleeved jackets used by Japanese Pyrotechnicians). There are also several clippings and newspapers on display as well as a list of significant fireworks festivals in the country including the following: Sumida River Fireworks Festival in Tokyo, Nagaoka Festival Fireworks in Niigata Prefecture, Toro Nagashi and Great Exhibition of Fireworks in Fukui Prefecture and many more!
The museum is open daily from July to August. For the remaining months, it is open on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. However, the museum is only open for a short time – from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm. Since it is a free facility, there is no admission fee required! Everyone is given a chance to visit the museum and make themselves knowledgeable about the country’s fireworks history.