Naruko Lacquer Ware
At the beginning of the 17th century, the lord of the fief in the area where Naruko is situated, dispatched lacquerers and maki-e craftsmen to Kyoto to develop their skills, in an attempt to raise the popularity of the local product. According to a late 18th century document various household items were being produced and by then the production of lacquer ware was the main employment for the people of Naruko.
The cultivation of cotton for home use on the sandy soil in the area of Yumigahama in the western part of Tottori Prefecture started in the latter half of the 17th century. When wholesalers of the indigo balls used for dyeing became established in the middle of the 18th century, cotton production for cloth increased.
Koshu Lacquered Deerhide
Deerhide craft products were being made in the area centered on the city of Kofu in present-day Yamanashi Prefecture during the 19th century. By the end of the same century, it is known that deerhide draw-string money bags and purses were well known among people at large as reference is made to them in Tokaidochu Hizakurige, a humorous book published in the 19th century.
Murakami Carved and Lacquered Ware
The Murakami area of Niigata Prefecture has been well known since the Heian period (794-1185) as a natural lacquer producing area. Using this refined sap, Murakami Kibori Tsuishu dates back to the beginning of the 15th century.
It is said that Kiryu Ori go back some 1,200 years, to when Princess Shirataki, who served at the Imperial Court, went to live in Kiryu after she married into the Yamada family and taught the art of sericulture and weaving to the people of the village.
Large quantities of kaolin were discovered in the area during the 18th century. With the help of the local feudal lord, potters skilled in the making of porcelain from Arita in present-day Saga Prefecture were brought in to help, and the porcelain made in the castle town of Izushi marked the beginnings of this ware. Subsequently, the number of kilns increased in and around this castle town and a production center became established.
Kishu Paulownia Chests
At the end of the Edo period (1600-1868), the tower of Wakayama Castle was destroyed when it was struck by lightening and much of the furniture was burnt to ashes. Records show that when the castle tower was rebuilt four years later, the chests and other cabinets, which had been lost in the fire, were remade. Further more, old books and chests dating back to the mid-19th century have also been discovered in town houses all over Wakayama Prefecture.
Osaka Naniwa Pewter Ware
Pewter ware was first introduced to Japan some 1,300 years ago by envoys from China. Later during the early part of the Kamakura period (1185-1333), the Zen monk Eisai visited Sung dynasty China and returned with a maker of tea urns. His skills with pewter are said to mark the real beginning of this craft in Japan. It was not until the 18th century, however, that a production center was established in Osaka.
It seems likely that the making of Fukuyama Koto started at the time of the erection of a castle at the beginning of the Edo period (1600-1868) in Fukuyama, which is now a city in Hiroshima Prefecture. Craft industries flourished in castle towns during the Edo period, and with encouragement from the feudal lord at the time, both accompanied and unaccompanied songs were very popular in Fukuyama.
In the second half of the 17th century, the scattered potteries of Chibana in Misato, Takaraguchi in Shuri and Wakuta in Naha were brought together by the King of Ryukyu and a new center was established in what is now Tsuboya.
At the end of the 16th century, timber used by the Kaga clan, which governed the area mainly in the south of present-day Ishikawa prefecture, used the Shogawa river to float logs down stream. This is how the handling of timber began and the logs were stored in a pool within the district of Shogawa-cho, which became the largest collection point for timber in the Hokuriku region.