Yokohama


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Yokohama

(yō'kōhä`mä), city (1990 pop. 3,220,331), capital of Kanagawa prefecture, SE Honshu, Japan, on the western shore of Tokyo Bay. Japan's second largest city and one of its leading seaports, Yokohama belongs to the extensive urban-industrial belt around Tokyo called the Keihin Industrial Zone. Among its industries are steel mills, oil refineries, chemical plants, and factories that produce transportation equipment, electrical apparatus, automobiles, machinery, primary metals, ships, and textiles. The city also has advanced technology industries and venture businesses. Yokohama has excellent transportation links with most major Japanese cities. In 1854, U.S. Commodore Matthew C. PerryPerry, Matthew Calbraith,
1794–1858, American naval officer, b. South Kingstown, R.I.; brother of Oliver Hazard Perry. Appointed a midshipman in 1809, he first served under his brother on the Revenge and then was aide to Commodore John Rodgers on the
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 visited Yokohama, which was then a small fishing village. In 1859 it became a port for foreign trade and the site of a foreign settlement that enjoyed extraterritorial rights. Known especially for its exports of raw silk, Yokohama also handled canned fish and other local products. Foreign trade led to the rapid growth of Yokohama, which served during the last half of the 19th cent. as Tokyo's outer port. The capital has since expanded the facilities and operations of its own port, but Yokohama is still important in the export of machinery, iron, and steel and in the import of raw materials for the region. Japan's first railroad linked Yokohama with Tokyo in 1872. Yokohama formally became a city in 1889. Extraterritoriality was abolished in 1899. Virtually destroyed by an earthquake and fires in 1923, Yokohama was quickly rebuilt; the city was modernized, and extensive improvements were made in its harbor. Yokohama suffered heavy bombardment during World War II, but it revived and prospered. The filling in of shallow areas of the bay for port facilities and industrial use has continued. The city has four universities; a variety of Christian churches, Shinto shrines, and temples; and numerous parks and gardens, notably Nogeyama Park, which was created after the earthquake. It is the site of Kanazawa Library, founded in 1275, which houses a large collection of historical documents.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Yokohama

 

a major economic center and port in Japan, the administrative center of Kanagawa Prefecture. It is located on Honshu Island on the coast of Tokyo Bay 30 km southwest of Tokyo. Yokohama and the capital form the Keihin agglomeration. The area of the city is 413 sq km. Population, 2, 238, 300 (1970).

Yokohama is an important international transportation center and one of the biggest trade and passenger ports in the Far East. The total length of the piers is 14 km, of which the biggest are Shinko, Osanbashi, and Mizuho. Yokohama is the second largest Japanese port in freight turnover (over 120 million tons in 1972) and an industrial center in the Kanto industrial region. The most developed industries are shipbuilding and other types of machine building (primarily the production of rolling stock and of electrical energy equipment), ferrous metallurgy, and petrochemistry. Other branches of industry include atomic energy, with an atomic electric power plant under construction; military plants, including aircraft construction; light industry and food industry, including cotton, silk-winding, weaving, and sewing factories; and glass and ceramics.

The main offices and branches of the biggest Japanese banks, monopoly concerns, and commercial firms are located in the city. Yokohama was founded in 1858 as an amalgamation and expansion of the two small settlements of Kanagawa and Yokohama. In the 1870’s, Yokohama became a major port of Japan, accounting for 70 percent of the country’s foreign trade. In 1923 a great part of the city was destroyed by the earthquake and a fire, and in 1945 it was heavily damaged by raids of the United States Air Force.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Yokohama

a port in central Japan, on SE Honshu on Tokyo Bay: a major port and the country's second largest city situated in the largest and most populous industrial region of Japan. Pop.: 3 433 612 (2002 est.)
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
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