Shirakawa, Fukushima

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Shirakawa
白河市
City
Shirakawa City Hall
Shirakawa City Hall
Flag of Shirakawa
Flag
Official seal of Shirakawa
Seal
Location of Shirakawa in Fukushima Prefecture
Location of Shirakawa in Fukushima Prefecture
Shirakawa is located in Japan
Shirakawa
Shirakawa
 
Coordinates: 37°07′34.7″N 140°12′39.3″E / 37.126306°N 140.210917°E / 37.126306; 140.210917Coordinates: 37°07′34.7″N 140°12′39.3″E / 37.126306°N 140.210917°E / 37.126306; 140.210917
Country Japan
Region Tōhoku
Prefecture Fukushima Prefecture
Area
 • Total 305.30 km2 (117.88 sq mi)
Population (November 2014)
 • Total 62,688
 • Density 205/km2 (530/sq mi)
Time zone Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)
- Tree Pinus densiflora
- Flower Ume
- Bird Emberiza cioides
Phone number 0248-22-1111
Address 7-1 Hachimankōji, Shirakawa, Fukushima 961-0941
Website www.city.shirakawa.fukushima.jp
View of Komine Castle in Shirakawa

Shirakawa (白河市 Shirakawa-shi?) is a city located in Fukushima Prefecture, in northern Honshū, Japan. As of November 2014, the city had an estimated population of 62,688 and a population density of 205 persons per km². The total area was 305.3 square kilometres (117.9 sq mi).

Geography[edit]

Shirakawa is located in southern Fukushima prefecture.

Neighboring municipalities[edit]

Climate[edit]

Shirakawa has a humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate classification Cfa) with warm summers and cold winters. Precipitation is significant throughout the year, but is heaviest from May to October.

Climate data for Shirakawa, Fukushima
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 4.4
(39.9)
4.6
(40.3)
8.2
(46.8)
15.4
(59.7)
20.5
(68.9)
22.9
(73.2)
26.3
(79.3)
28.2
(82.8)
23.3
(73.9)
17.8
(64)
12.7
(54.9)
7.4
(45.3)
15.98
(60.75)
Daily mean °C (°F) −0.2
(31.6)
0.2
(32.4)
3.3
(37.9)
9.7
(49.5)
14.9
(58.8)
18.3
(64.9)
21.9
(71.4)
23.3
(73.9)
18.9
(66)
12.7
(54.9)
7.4
(45.3)
2.4
(36.3)
11.07
(51.91)
Average low °C (°F) −4.4
(24.1)
−3.9
(25)
−1.4
(29.5)
4.2
(39.6)
9.4
(48.9)
14.4
(57.9)
18.5
(65.3)
19.8
(67.6)
15.3
(59.5)
8.2
(46.8)
2.5
(36.5)
−2.1
(28.2)
6.71
(44.08)
Precipitation mm (inches) 29.0
(1.142)
43.3
(1.705)
67.7
(2.665)
99.2
(3.906)
112.6
(4.433)
177.7
(6.996)
162.9
(6.413)
200.9
(7.909)
191.1
(7.524)
116.3
(4.579)
63.5
(2.5)
33.4
(1.315)
1,297.6
(51.087)
Snowfall cm (inches) 24
(9.4)
30
(11.8)
18
(7.1)
3
(1.2)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
2
(0.8)
15
(5.9)
92
(36.2)
 % humidity 68 67 65 66 70 80 84 82 82 77 73 70 73.7
Mean monthly sunshine hours 164.6 154.2 187.4 182.9 196.8 131.7 129.2 156.2 111.3 144.0 144.8 156.4 1,859.5
Source: NOAA (1961-1990) [1]

History[edit]

The area of present-day Shirakawa was part of ancient Mutsu Province and was the location of a barrier gate on the Oshu kaido connecting the capital at Kyoto with the northern provinces. In the Heian period, the Buddhist monk and waka poet Nōin composed the following poem about the region:

In the Edo period the area prospered as a castle town Shirakawa Domain, and was the site of a major battle in the Aizu War during the Meiji restoration. In the Meiji period, it was organized as part of Nakadōri region of Iwaki Province.

The town of Shirakawa was formed on April 1, 1889 with the creation of the municipalities system. On April 1, 1949, Shirakawa was elevated to city status after merging with the neighboring village of Ōnuma. Subsequent mergers occurred in 1954 and 1955 with the inclusion of the villages of Shirasaka, Odagawa, Goka and a portion of Omotegō into the territory of Shirakawa. On November 7, 2005, the villages of Taishin, Higashi, and the remainder of Omotegō (all from Nishishirakawa District) were merged into Shirakawa, increasing its population from 48,297 to approximately 66,000 and territory from 117.67 km2 (45.43 sq mi) to 305.30 km2 (117.88 sq mi).


Economy[edit]

Shirakawa has a mixed economy, and is a major commercial center for the surrounding region.

Education[edit]

Shirakawa has four high schools, eight junior high schools, and fifteen elementary schools.

Post offices[edit]

Shirakawa has nineteen post offices within the boundaries of the city.[2]

Transportation[edit]

Railway[edit]

Highway[edit]

Local attractions[edit]

  • Festivals held in Shirakawa include "Daruma Ichi", celebrating the traditional Daruma doll, wherein the city streets are packed with stalls selling Daruma, a variety of festival foods and charms, and "Chōchin Matsuri" (Lantern Festival), which is held each summer, with a special three-day celebration held once every three years.

International relations[edit]

Noted people from Shirakawa[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Media related to Shirakawa, Fukushima at Wikimedia Commons