Location of Suzu in Ishikawa Prefecture
|• Mayor||Izumiya Masuhiro|
|• Total||247.20 km2 (95.44 sq mi)|
|Population (January 2011)|
|• Density||70.1/km2 (182/sq mi)|
|• Tree||Japanese red pine|
|• Bird||Japanese bush-warbler|
|Time zone||Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)|
|City hall address||1-6-2, Uedomachi Kitagata, Suzu-shi, Ishikawa-ken
Suzu (珠洲市 Suzu-shi?) is a city located at the northeastern-most tip of the Noto Peninsula in Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan. The city was founded on 15 July 1954 out of the merger of many smaller towns in the vicinity.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Climate
- 4 Demographics
- 5 Economics
- 6 Government
- 7 Mass Media
- 8 Tourist attractions and events
- 9 Etymology of Suzu
- 10 Sister city
- 11 Bibliography
- 12 References
- 13 External links
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In ancient times, Suzu prospered as a gateway for trade by sea, establishing connections with places such as Izumo (Shimane Prefecture), Sado (Sado Island) and Ezo (Hokkaido). In turn, Suzu was introduced to ironware culture from a considerably early period in the Izumo era, and even gained crucial agricultural influence and knowledge for civilians to start farming within Suzu. In fact, it is thought that such ancient Noto culture originated and spread outwards from the tip of the Noto peninsula.
In the second year of the Yourou Era (718), the Province of Noto was segregated and established the 4 districts of Suzu, Fugeshi, Hakui and Noto. For a short period of time, the land was claimed as part of Etchu Province (Toyama Prefecture). During this period the famous Otomo no Yakamochi (Etchu Provincial Governor at the time) recited a poem about the picturesque scenery of Suzu bay upon visiting Suzu, which would later be enlisted in the famous poetry anthology called the Manyoshu.
Later in the Kouji Period (1143), the Noto Provincial Governor Minamoto no Toshikane established "Wakayama Manor" on private land. Before long, Minamoto had developed the "Wakayama Manor" into the biggest Manor in all of Noto, expanding territory to take over the majority of land in Suzu. In similar times, production of "Suzu-Yaki" (Suzu brand Pottery) had begun, with oversea distribution to Hokkaido becoming common. Suzu developed into one of the very few areas in Japan named famous for producing pottery.
During the Warring States Period (1467–1568), the ongoing violent fighting between the Hatakeyama family, Uesugi family and the Maeda family tore the land part. However, pressure from the Maeda Family Army eventually took told, and the Uuesugi Family Army fell, conceding all of the land to the Maeda Family who were part of the Kaga Clan.
Since ancient times in Noto, salt making using earthenware had been prospering by utilizing the geographical advantage of its long peninsula coastline. However, the method used to make salt changed over the years, and people took to drying salt by the beaches. Before long, the Suzu coastline became filled with salt farms, and this "beach drying" technique became branded as a National cultural importance by Japan.
When the Clan system was abolished in Japan in 1871, administrative districts were split and revised over and over again, until the territorial borders of Suzu were eventually settled as 1 town and 14 villages in 1889. Years later in 1954, all of the administrative districts were merged to become the city we know today.
Later, the city became the proposed site of the Suzu Nuclear Power Plant; however, in 2003 the proposal was "frozen" until further notice.
At 9:42 am on the morning of 25 March 2007, the Noto earthquake occurred. The earthquake was reported as a strong 5 on the Shindo intensity scale in Shouin-machi, a weak 5 in Ootani-machi, and a 4 in Misaki-machi.
On 4 April 2009, the city participated in the "Rehearsal for Ending Analog Broadcasting" organized by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications. Later, on 24 September 2010, all analog broadcasting in the area was stopped completely.
Location and geographical features
Located almost in the middle of Japan and at the top of the Noto Peninsula, Suzu is surrounded by the ocean in three directions. It shares borders with the City of Wajima, and with the Town of Noto of the Hōsu district to the west. Suzu is surrounded by nature, with thick forestry areas and miles of beautiful coastline. Many local traditions have been preserved over the years, lending it a rich culture one can see even today. Within the City grounds, diatomaceous soil can be found almost anywhere, and has been used to produce portable clay stoves ever since the Edo period.
Suzu has a humid subtropical climate (Cfa, according to the Köppen climate classification). Precipitation is abundant throughout the year, with an annual average of 2,245 millimetres (88.4 in). Summers are warm to hot and winters are chilly, with snowfalls.
|Climate data for Suzu (1981–2010)|
|Average high °C (°F)||5.7
|Daily mean °C (°F)||2.5
|Average low °C (°F)||−0.8
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||229.7
|Average snowfall cm (inches)||110
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||57.6||78.4||130.5||186.3||207.1||156.7||157.3||202.9||138.5||144.2||99.2||65.9||1,624.6|
|Source: Japan Meteorological Agency|
Of all the cities on Honshu, Suzu's has the smallest population.
- Agriculture: (Wet-land rice, Matsutake mushrooms, charcoal, and other crops)
- Fishing: Processing of marine goods
- Livestock: Noto Beef, a regionally renowned brand, is bred here
- Ceramics: Portable stoves called shichirin and Suzu-yaki pottery are the chief ceramic goods produced in the city. During the Middle Ages, Suzu flourished due to its pottery, referred to as Suzu-yaki. With a characteristic shade of dark gray, the Muromachi Era was a golden age for Suzu-yaki, but it soon went into decline, and vanished by the time of the Sengoku Period. In recent times, however, production of pottery along those traditional lines has resumed. Also, diatomaceous earth is produced almost anywhere within the city limits, and it has been used to produce portable stoves since the Edo Period.
- Salt: Salt is still manufactured traditionally with salt evaporation ponds, particularly through the Agehama method of artificially flooded saltpans
- Distilling: There are several sake distillers in the area, such as Sougen Sake Brewery
More recently, Suzu has become known for its production of specialized charcoal for the Japanese tea ceremony.
- Izumiya Masuhiro (泉谷満寿裕 Izumiya Masuhiro?) 2006- (2nd term)
- Hokuriku Chunichi Shimbun (Chunichi Shimbun Co.), Suzu Correspondence Division
- Hokkoku Shimbun, Suzu Branch Office
- Nouetsu Cablenet (Suzu area)
Tourist attractions and events
- Suzu Shrine
- Mitsukejima, also called "Battleship Rock"
- Rokkouzaki Lighthouse
- Suzu-yaki Museum
- Deep Noto Salt Farm Village
- Godzilla Rock
- Iida-machi Toroyama Festival (Established by the city as an important intangible folk culture asset in 1996)
- Houryuu Tanabata Kiriko Festival
- Held on 7 August in Ukai, Houryuu-machi. A 14 meter tall kiriko is carried by a group of young people on their shoulders around the Ukai area in Houryuu-machi. Although the kiriko in Jike, Misaki-machi is recognized as being the biggest in Japan, the kiriko used in this festival is the largest among kirikos that are carried on the shoulders. In the final stages of the festial, with fireworks in the background, the kiriko is pushed towards the sea and the participants do boisterous dance in the sea around some pine torches.
Etymology of Suzu
The City of Suzu is thought to have been named after Suzu Shinto Shrine, which is located in Awazu. The name Suzu is mentioned in the National Record Book of Japan, though the Kanji for Suzu (珠洲) is not thought to have been identified until the early Wadou era (Year 713).
There is also the theory that the name originates from the Ainu language, as several other place names in the area are said to come from that language.
- Suzu City Living Guide, English Edition
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