The Scenic Beauty Protected by Fukuzawa Yukichi: Nakatsu and Yabakei Valley

100 years ago, on March 7th 1923, Nakatsu’s Yabakei Valley was registered as a National Place of Scenic Beauty. When Fukuzawa and his children visited his hometown of Nakatsu in 1894, he learned that land in Yabakei Valley was up for sale. He made arrangements to privately purchase the land of Kyoshuho, protecting Yabakei’s picturesque scenery from development. This exhibition is held in partnership with Nakatsu History Museum’s ‘Kingdom of Stone – How Yabakei Became a National Place of Scenic Beauty’, as we introduce Yabakei’s scenery and the relationship between Fukuzawa and Nakatsu. On display are Edo period guides to Yabakei, such as the path to Rakanji Temple that Fukuzawa himself once climbed, as well as a replica of one of Rakanji’s 500 stone Arhats. You can also see letters from Fukuzawa to those such as Otabe Kikuichi, who lent their support to protect Kyoshuho, and birds-eye views of the area by Yoshida Hatsusaburo, used in historical travel pamphlets.

Dates: February 17 (Fri.)- March 11 (Sat.), 2023
    Closed: Sundays, public holidays
Venue: Old University Library 2nd Floor, Temporary Exhibition Room, Keio History Museum
    *Click here for access to the venue
Open: 10:00-18:00
Admission: Open to all (we recommend that you reserve a spot in advance)
Organizer: Nakatsu City

Featured items

Letter Addressed to Fukuzawa Hyakusuke from Hirooka Kyūemon
Letter Addressed to Hattori Kane from Fukuzawa Yukichi (June 19th 1897)
Map of Rakanji Temple
Letter addressed to Otabe Kikuichi from Fukuzawa Yukichi (June 5th 1897)

Stone Arhat (replica)
“Unapralleled in Beauty, Yabakei Valley Transit Map” by Yoshida Hatsusaburo (replica)

The Scenic Beauty Protected by Fukuzawa Yukichi: Nakatsu and Yabakei Valley
List of Works