Place Names

Yokohama, Japan

 



Yokohama
Yokohama
横浜
  Designated city  
横浜市 City of Yokohama

From top left: Minato Mirai 21, Yokohama Chinatown, Nippon Maru, Yokohama Station, Yokohama Marine Tower

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Location of Yokohama in Kanagawa
Yokohama is located in Japan Yokohama 
Coordinates: 3526′39″N 13938′17″E / 35.44417N 139.63806E / 35.44417; 139.63806Coordinates: 3526′39″N 13938′17″E / 35.44417N 139.63806E / 35.44417; 139.63806
Country Japan
Region Kantō
Prefecture Kanagawa
Government
  Mayor Fumiko Hayashi
Area
  Total 437.38 km (168.87 sq mi)
Population (June 1, 2012)
  Total 3,697,894
  Density Bad rounding here8,500/km (Bad rounding here22,000/sq mi)
Time zone Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)
City Symbols
Tree Camellia, Chinquapin, Sangoju
Sasanqua, Ginkgo, Zelkova
Flower Rose
Phone number 045-671-2121
Address 1-1 Minato-chō, Naka-ku, Yokohama-shi, Kanagawa-ken
231-0017
Website www.city.yokohama.lg.jp

Yokohama is the capital city of Kanagawa Prefecture and the second largest city in Japan by population after Tokyo and most populous municipality of Japan. It lies on Tokyo Bay, south of Tokyo, in the Kantō region of the main island of Honshu. It is a major commercial hub of the Greater Tokyo Area.

Yokohama's population of 3.7 million makes it Japan's largest incorporated city. Yokohama had been the world's largest suburb until the formation of New Taipei (excluding Mainland China as cities there are nonstandard).

Yokohama developed rapidly as Japan's prominent port city following the end of Japan's relative isolation in the mid-19th century, and is today one of its major ports along with Kobe, Osaka, Nagoya, Hakata, Tokyo, and Chiba.

Place Names

History

Landing of Commodore Perry, officers, and men of the squadron to meet the Imperial commissioners at Yokohama 14 July 1853. Lithograph by Sarony & Co., 1855, after Wilhelm Heine

 

Yokohama was a small fishing village up to the end of the feudal Edo period, when Japan held a policy of national seclusion, having little contact with foreigners. A major turning point in Japanese history happened in 185354, when Commodore Matthew Perry arrived just south of Yokohama with a fleet of American warships, demanding that Japan open several ports for commerce, and the Tokugawa shogunate agreed by signing the Treaty of Peace and Amity.

It was initially agreed that one of the ports to be opened to foreign ships would be the bustling town of Kanagawa-juku (in what is now Kanagawa Ward) on the Tōkaidō, a strategic highway that linked Edo to Kyoto and Osaka. However, the Tokugawa shogunate decided that Kanagawa-juku was too close to the Tōkaidō for comfort, and port facilities were instead built across the inlet in the sleepy fishing village of Yokohama. The Port of Yokohama was opened on 2 June 1859.


Street scene c1880

 

Yokohama quickly became the base of foreign trade in Japan. Japan's first English language newspaper, the Japan Herald, was first published there in 1861. Foreigners occupied a district of the city called "Kannai" (関内, "inside the barrier"), which was surrounded by a moat, and were protected by their extraterritorial status both within and outside the moat. Many individuals crossed the moat, causing a number of problems. The Namamugi Incident, one of the events that preceded the downfall of the shogunate, took place in what is now Tsurumi Ward in 1862; Ernest Satow described it in A Diplomat in Japan. In 1865 the first ice cream and first beer in Japan were manufactured in the city. Chinese immigrants came to Yokohama in increasing numbers.

After the Meiji Restoration of 1868, the port was developed for trading silk, the main trading partner being Great Britain. Many Western influences first reached Japan in Yokohama, including Japan's first daily newspaper (1870) and first gas-powered street lamps (1872). Japan's first railway was constructed in the same year to connect Yokohama to Shinagawa and Shinbashi in Tokyo. In the same year, Jules Verne set Yokohama, which he had never visited, in an episode of his widely read Around the World in Eighty Days, capturing the atmosphere of a fast-developing, Western-oriented Japanese city.


Foreign ships in Yokohama harbor

A foreign trading house in Yokohama in 1861

 

In 1887, a British merchant, Samuel Cocking, built the city's first power plant. At first for his own use, this coal-burning plant became the basis for the Yokohama Cooperative Electric Light Company. The city was officially incorporated on April 1, 1889. By the time the extraterritoriality of foreigner areas was abolished in 1899, Yokohama was the most international city in Japan, with foreigner areas stretching from Kannai to the Bluff area and the large Yokohama Chinatown.

The early 20th century was marked by rapid growth of industry. Entrepreneurs built factories along reclaimed land to the north of the city toward Kawasaki, which eventually grew to be the Keihin Industrial Area. The growth of Japanese industry brought affluence, and many wealthy trading families constructed sprawling residences there, while the rapid influx of population from Japan and Korea also led to the formation of Kojiki-Yato, then the largest slum in Japan.

Much of Yokohama was destroyed on 1 September 1923 by the Great Kantō earthquake. The Yokohama police reported casualties at 30,771 dead and 47,908 injured, out of a pre-earthquake population of 434,170. Fuelled by rumours of rebellion and sabotage, vigilante mobs thereupon murdered many Koreans in the Kojiki-yato slum. Many people believed that Koreans used black magic to cause the earthquake. Martial law was in place until November 19. Rubble from the quake was used to reclaim land for parks, the most famous being the Yamashita Park on the waterfront which opened in 1930.

Yokohama was rebuilt, only to be destroyed again by thirty-odd U.S. air raids during World War II. An estimated seven or eight thousand people were killed in a single morning on 29 May 1945 in what is now known as the Great Yokohama Air Raid, when B-29s firebombed the city and in just one hour and nine minutes reduced 42% of it to rubble.


During the Korean War, the United States Navy used Yokohama's port as a transshipment base. This ship departed Yokohama in 1951, carrying war dead home to the U.S.

 

During the American occupation, Yokohama was a major transshipment base for American supplies and personnel, especially during the Korean War. After the occupation, most local U.S. naval activity moved from Yokohama to an American base in nearby Yokosuka.

The city was designated by government ordinance on September 1, 1956.

The city's tram and trolleybus system was abolished in 1972, the same year as the opening of the first line of Yokohama Municipal Subway.


Landsat image of Yokohama

 

Construction of Minato Mirai 21 ("Port Future 21"), a major urban development project on reclaimed land, started in 1983. Minato Mirai 21 hosted the Yokohama Exotic Showcase in 1989, which saw the first public operation of maglev trains in Japan and the opening of Cosmo Clock 21, then the tallest Ferris wheel in the world. The 860m-long Yokohama Bay Bridge opened in the same year.

In 1993, Minato Mirai saw the opening of the Yokohama Landmark Tower, the tallest building in Japan.

The 2002 FIFA World Cup final was held in June at the International Stadium Yokohama.

In 2009, the city marked the 150th anniversary of the opening of the port and the 120th anniversary of the commencement of the City Administration. An early part in the commemoration project incorporated the Fourth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD IV) which was held in Yokohama in May 2008.

In November, 2010, Yokohama hosted the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting.


June 25, 1950 1200

Korean_War

A message ninety minutes later gave confirmation. General MacArthur immediately informed Washington and, within a few hours, sent the first comprehensive situation report on the Korean fighting. [04-16]

As the news from Korea worsened later that first day, General MacArthur warned Washington officials, "Enemy effort serious in strength and strategic intent and is undisguised act of war subject to United Nations censure." But he hardly realized how strong it was. His situation report showed only three North Korean divisions along the entire border. [04-17]

Korean_War

American Ambassador to Korea Muccio conferred with President Rhee, who said that the ROK Army would be out of ammunition within ten days. Muccio quickly cabled MacArthur for replenishment.

Korean_War

The Ambassador had already directed the acting chief of KMAG, Colonel Wright, to request an immediate shipment of ammunition for 105-mm. howitzers, 60-mm. mortars, and .30-caliber carbines. [04-18]

Korean_War

Before the day was out, [6/25] General MacArthur ordered General Walker to load the USNS Sergeant George D. Keathley (T-APC-117), then in Yokohama Harbor, with 105,000 rounds of 105-mm. ammunition and 265,000 rounds of 81-mm. mortar, 89,000 rounds of 60-mm. mortar, and 2,480,000 rounds of .30-caliber carbine ammunition. He wanted the Keathley to reach Pusan no later than 1 July. He directed FEAF and COMNAVFE to protect the Keathley en route and during cargo discharge. In his information report to the Department of the Army, MacArthur said that he intended

"to supply ROK all needed supplies as long as they show ability to use same." [04-19]

These actions MacArthur took independently. He received no authority from the JCS to supply the ROK until the following day, at 1330, 26 June. {this appears to be incorrect}