Oya History Museum is located in Utsunomiya city, Tochigi prefecture. Utilizing “Oya Underground Mine Remains” it is now popular as a museum. Attracted by the vast underground world of about 20,000 square meters, many people visit throughout the year. Also, it is used as a place to shoot music videos and movies here.
Oyo Town, Utsunomiya City, Tochigi Prefecture, has developed as a quarry from the Edo period. Oya stone is a sturdy stone that can only be mined in this region. It is a tuff made of volcanic activity about 20 million years ago, it is light, soft and easy to process.
Mining was conducted in Oya Town for about 70 years from 1919 to 1986. The main use of Oya stone is used in places where people can see it, such as platforms of train station, stairs, gate, stone walls, etc. It is Oya History Museum that introduces the history of the Oya stone. It was opened in 1979 in order to leave trace of the mining site of a special product of Oya stone in future generations. The Otani underground quarry site 30 meters below the ground is about 20,000 square meters. When a worker was digging a stone by hand, they carried 150 kilometers of stone one by one, and its hardship can be felt from traces of picks carved on the wall.
Speaking of Oya History Museum, it is a space of a huge quarry trace that it would awe on-lookers. That pillar and staircase looks like an underground shrine. There, the lighting is also dark, and it seems to have entered the different dimension world.
In addition, at the museum, the history and transition on Oya stone mining are introduced in an easy-to-understand manner. Materials such as mining tools and transport equipment are also on display. In addition, it is used for various uses such as art museums and churches. In the Oya History Museum there are shops and tea rooms selling souvenirs such as accessories and handmade items using Oya stone.
The remains of the Oyaishi stone underground mining place were used till 1986, in order to obtain the Oyaishi stones. Since it was working about 67 years, huge underground space to the extent that 21,000 square meters, an average depth of 30 m, and one baseball field enter was made.
At the museum knowing a history of the digging of the Oyaishi stone, it displays the documents such as changes of the transportation, a tool and hand‐cut digging method from the middle of Edo era when digging began in in earnest to about 1959.
The best part in the museum is the remains of the underground mining place. There is space of 21,000 square meters, the deepest place is 60m below ground. The average temperature in the tunnel is around 8 degrees Celsius.
The quantity per one block of the strip-mined stone was approximately 15cm *30cm *90cm, total harvest yields from the mine were approximately 10 million blocks.
As for the Oyaishi stone, digging is still carried out, it is used as building materials. It is a kind of the tufa which volcanic ashes and pumice are piled up 20 million years ago.
This place was used as the factory and a provision store of fighter plane in the wartime period. It is used as location sites of a movie and the concert halls now, or a church exists in inside further now, and it is used also as a wedding hall.
|Name:||Oya Underground Mine Remains (Oya History Museum)|
|Adresse:||Oyamachi 909 Utsunomiya, Tochigi 321-0345 Japan|
|Access:||Tobu Utsunomiya-sen Line “Tobu-Utsunomiya-eki Station” (20 minutes by bus)|
|Price:||800 yen (Adult)
400 yen (Junior High School Students or Elementary School Children)
Free (Preschool Kids)
Please refer the official web page.