Open: 10:00AM to 5:00PM (Closes 4:00PM from Oct. to Apr.)
Address: 213-1 Ikegami-cho, Izumi City
What is the Ikegami-Sone Site?
Ikegami-Sone Site contains the excavated remains of a large and prosperous village built in the Yayoi period, about 2000 years ago. At that time, the area of the site was 600,000 square meters and the village surrounded by a circular moat. According to experts, the Ikegami-Sone Site was the capital village of the Southern Osaka coastal area. This is evidenced by the many remnants from a prominent building designed with a large raised roof, the remains of a dedicated well, and the many recovered relics, pottery pieces, stone implements, and wooden artifacts.
Ikegami-Sone Site Park consists of an outdoor re-construction zone that has recreated a village from that bygone era. The ‘Guidance Centre’ provides information about Ikegami-Sone (at the time of Yayoi Period) and the visitor can also experience the Yayoi Period at the ‘Ikegamisone Yayoi Cultural Workshop’. A wide range of study tools for studying the period is available. Furthermore the ‘Osaka Prefectural Museum of Yayoi Culture’ opened in 1991 on an adjacent site.
The Great Building and Large Well
The Great Building was excavated at the center of the site. The pillar foundations that once supported the original structure tell us that the Great Building must have measured an area of 19.2 meters by 6.9 meters with an interior space of 133 square meters. This must have been one of the largest structures of the Yayoi Period. There are 11 pillars in each of two parallel rows running east to west and in the center are four holes for pillars that supported the highest roof point. Two of these are positioned at each end of the building, and being situated outside the main space, permitted erection of ‘gable style’ features. Remains of the wood from the original pillars have been found in 17 of 26 pillar holes. Of those 17 pillars, 3 were made from the wood of Zelkova trees while the other 14 were made of Japanese Cypress. By studying the growth rings within the latter trees, it has been determined that they were felled in the year 52 B.C.
The Large Well was formed using a huge portion of Camphor tree. The tree was first cast into a giant cylinder with an interior diameter of two meters. Because camphor trees have a strong odor, archaeologists have suggested that local villagers of the time did not use the well to draw drinking water but instead used the water to purify themselves during sacred rituals.
A. About the Ikegami-Sone Information House: The entrance to Ikegami-Sone Historic Park serves as a visitor reception space and to provide guidance information.
B. Ikegamisone Yayoi Cultural Workshop: This facility recreates the time when the pillars and well were first discovered. From making things by themselves, visitors can gain direct experience of the Yayoi Period.
C. Osaka Prefectural Museum of Yayoi Culture: This is a unique facility for studying all about the Yayoi Period and its culture in Japan.
1. The Great Building at Izumi: This is a restoration of the original large raised-roof building.
2. The Large Yayoi Well: Resoration of the large well. This is one of the largest raised roofs covering a well from the Yayoi Period and likewise, one of the largest carved wells of the time.
3. Pillars: These two pillars were not part of any structure and were built separately. Archaeologists believe they may be religious objects.
4. Buried Sanukite Stones: This is a reconstruction of the ditch in which several sanukite stone implements, and an axe used for religious rituals, were buried.
5. Buried Earthenware: These bottom-less earthenware objects were buried.
6. Square Well: The structure of this well was bored in a sideways direction. This is the oldest known example excavated in Japan.
7. Small Yayoi Pit: Holes in the wall were small but deep and holes for the pillars relatively thick. This has been constructed with a soil-thatch.
8. Buried Octopus Pot: Many buried octopus pots have been excavated. It has been suggested they were buried together as part of a prayer for good fishing.
9. Small Structure: This small structure has been restored and may have been a workplace for making tools. It is shaped like a house with a ‘hipped’ roof and a gabled roof.
10. Yayoi Pit-Dwellings: These are Yayoi Period dwellings. A circle style and square style home have been restored to show how people lived in the year 50 B.C.
11. Circular Moat: The large moat surrounding the village has been restored. The space enclosed by the moat has a diameter of approximately 300 meters.