• Kyodo

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A bust of 19th century government official Murahashi Hisanari, who is credited with building in Sapporo the nation’s first public brewery, was unveiled Friday in the garden of the Hokkaido governor’s official residence.

About 170 people, including Gov. Harumi Takahashi and sculptor Shinya Nakamura, who made the 70-cm-tall bronze bust, attended the morning’s unveiling ceremony along with Murahashi’s great-granddaughter, Tokiko Oyama, 74.

The sculpture is modeled after a bust of Murahashi in a museum in the city of Kagoshima.

Civic groups had campaigned for another bust of Murahashi to be displayed in Sapporo to honor his contribution to Hokkaido’s industrial development.

Murahashi was born in 1842 in the Shimazu feudal domain in what is now Kagoshima Prefecture. He was sent by the government to Hokkaido during the Meiji Era (1868-1912) to be in charge of developing the island.

Keenly feeling the need for Hokkaido to develop its industry, he convinced the Meiji government to scrap its original plans to build a public brewery in Tokyo and put it in Sapporo instead.

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