Oct 2023 03
Former Toyosato Elementary School Buildings

Former Toyosato Elementary School Buildings | A classroom where nostalgia and architectural beauty interweave. "Chalk Education Hall of Fame"

豊郷小学校旧校舎群 | ノスタルジーと建築美が織りなす教室。「白亜の教育殿堂」

Toyosato in Inukami-gun is located on the eastern bank of Lake Biwa. The old school buildings of Toyosato Elementary School, with a three-story school building and a fountain on a site of about 12,000 tsubo facing Nakasendo, one of the five highways of the Edo period.


The beautiful architecture, which looks like a white heron with its wings spread, has been called the “Chalk Education Hall of Fame”. The ivory-colored walls are decorated with art deco-like decorations, giving it an elegant appearance.


The old school buildings of Toyosato Elementary School were donated in 1937 by Mr. Tetsujiro Furukawa, one of the Omi merchants who was managing director of Marubeni at the time. It was designed by Mr. William M. Vories, an architect who was active mainly in Omihachiman City at the time.


Once you step into the school building, you will find yourself in a nostalgic world with a calm yet warm atmosphere.


The length of the corridor extending from the main entrance on the first floor to the left and right is 100m. Natural light pours in from the large windows up to the ceiling, creating a bright and open impression.


It was a reinforced concrete building, which was rare at the time, and was equipped with state-of-the-art facilities such as flush toilets, heating equipment, and extension telephones. It was called "the best elementary school in the Orient" because it was equipped with the latest teaching materials.


A science room that retains the atmosphere of those days, where you can see the students working hard on their experiments.


A classroom filled with nostalgic memories. The window frames and walls, which are modern even today, and the detailed design have been repaired to preserve the original design as much as possible.


A three-row, three-tiered window on the right wall of the classroom. The bottom two steps are intentionally opened inward so as not to bump into students walking in the corridor.


A music room famous for being a model for a popular anime. Admiration for architectural beauty and a mood that invites nostalgia are interwoven.


A statue modeled after Aesop's fairy tale "The Rabbit and the Tortoise" is installed on the railing of the stairs in the school building. This is an anecdote that Tetsujiro Furukawa was told by his teacher when he was in elementary school. Just like the story of "The Rabbit and the Tortoise," work hard even when no one is watching. Even if it's slow, move forward.


Tetsujiro Furukawa, an Omi merchant, invested two-thirds of his personal fortune in the construction of an elementary school. Based on the belief that “the development of the country depends on the education of the people,” he decided to donate to the elementary school where he grew up and build a state-of-the-art school building. I would like you to have a glimpse of the nostalgic world along with the aesthetics that Vories embodied.


about this venue

Former Toyosato Elementary School Buildings

Location: 518 Ishihata, Toyosato-cho, Inukami-gun, Shiga Prefecture
Phone number: 0749-35-3737