Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Mitsubishi Shipyards Nagasaki

Mitsubishi Shipyards Nagasaki is such a dominate and striking feature of the Nagasaki Port and the city itself.  It is virtually impossible not to see a dozen of so unmistakable Mitsubishi Company Logo's throughout the area and it is still today one of the largest employers in Nagasaki.

In 1857 at the request of the Shogunate engineers began work on a modern, Western-style foundry and shipyard  and construction was completed in 1861.  In 1868, the shipyard was placed under control of the new Meiji Government and the first dry dock was completed in 1879.

The shipyard was renamed as Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in 1934.  It became the largest private firm in Japan and was active in the manufacture of ships, heavy machinery, airplanes and railroad cars.  From its inception, the Mitsubishi Shipyards Nagasaki were heavily involved in contracts for the Imperial Japanese Navy and originally the Atomic Bomb was destined to be dropped directly above the Mitsubishi Shipyards Nagasaki but of course this was not the actual result and unfortunately the suburban area of Urakami approx 6 kms away was the actual target.  As a result of this the Mitsubishi Shipyards Nagasaki was largely untouched and unaffected by the atomic bomb and resulting shock waves and remained operational ever since.

From a boat on the harbor or from the shoreline you can get some great shots of this dry dock in fully operation and there is always a huge ship or tanker or two getting some repairs that can be seen.  Without a doubt one of the most impressive harbors of the world.

Come and check out Mitsubishi Shipyards Nagasaki on a map:

Click on the photos below to enlarge:

The massive cranes

Oil tanks in the foreground

Long view

Here is a video of the Mitstubishi Shipyards in Nagasaki:

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Maria Statue Nagasaki

The Maria Statue Nagasaki is located in Kaminoshima right on the waters edge and facing the open seas.   Perched atop a hill at the entrance to Nagasaki Port the statue was  constructed in 1897 and its main purpose was to welcome foreign ships to what was once a predominately a Christian town.

This had a double edged purpose so as to make the foreign guests feel comfortable in doing business in an area of Japan that was rife with Christians as apposed to other areas of Japan where Christianity was the exception and not the rule.  It is for this reason that Nagasaki became one of the 4 major trading ports throughout Japan and thrived as a friendly and approachable place to outside guests to visit and feel like that a connection even if it was just a spiritual one.

Below the Kaminoshima Church stands the statue of Our Lady on the Cape aka the Maria Statue Nagasaki.  The area and the colour of the waters were beautiful on this  day and the statue with its perfectly white outline perfectly contracted to the brilliant blue seas.  I was in awe of the location, the striking beauty of the statue and the general feeling of well being and peacefulness that was provide to me on this amazing day.

I would thoroughly recommend this area to anyone who would like to learn more about the Christian History of Japan and in particular Nagasaki.  Even if the weather is not as good as one this day of my visit I am sure you won't be disappointed!

Please check out the Maria Statue Nagasaki on a map:

Please click on the photos below to enlarge:

From afar

Close up

In all her glory

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An inspiration to all!

Powerful image from all angles