History in Tokyo

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A trip to Tokyo, Japan will be that much better if you strengthen yourself with some knowledge of Tokyo history. The experienced world traveler knows that getting to know a city's history helps the planning immensely. Spending your time wisely is essential and if you want to see the historical sights, some research is needed. The history of Tokyo is both rich and plentiful, so an overview will help you get started toward an historical visit.

Tokyo: Then and Now

Tokyo was established in 1457, but was first known as Edo. The ancient city became the home of the Tokugawa Shogunate. The Shogun were the primary military and political power in Japan, so Edo (Tokyo) was the unofficial capital. Eventually, the Shogun came to an end and Edo became Tokyo in 1868-1869 after Emperor Meiji seized full power. The emperor made Edo his home and had it renamed Tokyo, which means "capital in the east."

A great, devastating earthquake struck Tokyo in 1923, killing 70,000 people. The city suffered much damage and needed to be repaired. Reconstruction was implemented, but the entire construction plan was never fully realized. Tokyo's history took a turn for the worse with the onset of World War II.

From 1942 to 1945, Tokyo suffered some of its worst devastation. Air raids and Allied bombings reduced the population and city down to a horrible situation. However, the resilience of the Japanese people aided the comeback that came in the following decades.

Tokyo and Japan as a whole saw itself in an economic boom during the 1950s and 1960s. Industries such as steel, automobile manufacturing and consumer electronics played a big part in this boom. The world saw Tokyo's re-emergence in 1964 when it hosted the Summer Olympics.

The 1970's saw the population of Tokyo increase, which was fueled by the economy. By the 1980's Tokyo became the city it is today. It now stands as one of the world capitals next to London and New York.

Historical Sites in Tokyo

A trip to Tokyo should include these three historical locations:

Meiji Jingu Shrine: This shrine is the largest and most revered Shinto shrine in Japan. It was destroyed during WWII, but was rebuilt according to the original plan and standards. Its beauty is evident with a stroll through it.

Imperial Palace: The palace was the original home of the Shogun and then became the home of the emperors. The surrounding moats communicate its historical grandeur.

Mount Fuji: This mountain stands as the highest in Japan at 3,776 meters. It is one the great historical symbols of Japan. A hike with a camera is definitely a highlight.

Remember History

Historical events and locations can remind many of school lessons. To those of us who really want to get to know a city like Tokyo, these things stand as guides to help us know the past in the present.

February 12, 2010 change by 2 many commas
February 19, 2010 change by schitti
February 09, 2010 change by huhman

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