Founded in 1884 in the Meiji period, Ehime Sanshu is now the only remaining silkworm breeder in the prefecture. The company is housed in the Nisshin Hall in Yawatahama. Built in 1919, the three-story wooden building combines the Western features fashionable at that time with traditional Japanese construction. The narrow entrance facing the street is in Western style, with plastered walls. The doors and windows are ornamented with triangular pediments. A red brick firewall protects the part where the silkworms live. The larger part is in Japanese style, with wooden cladding. Nisshin Hall is a national tangible cultural property, and it’s been used a location for films.
The company breeds silkworms which are then purchased by other businesses which rear them and process the silk from their cocoons. Since this process involves the death of the insect, the worms have to be purchased from a breeder each year. In 1946 when Ehime Sanshu took its current name, the company boasted the third largest production volume in Japan.
A visit to Nisshin Hall conveys a powerful impression of the robust economy of Shikoku in the last century based on traditional industries.
Name in Japanese: 旧日進館
Pronunciation: kyū nisshinkan
Address: 3-70 Honaicho Kawanoishi, Yawatahama, Ehime 796-0201