This is the restored saltworks in the Ako City Marine Science Museum at the Hyogo Prefecture. Ako, which is blessed with the calm climate of Seto Inland Sea, has been known as a salt-producing town since ancient times. Currently, salt is produced in factories as a rule, but it was once made in salt pans. Kansui (concentrated saltwater) is boiled in an iron pot. When salt crystals form, they are transferred to the removal area and drip to dry. To remove the steam generated at that time, square coverings called usoguchi are attached to the end panels. These coverings prevent the thatch on the roof from rotting due to the water vapor on the windows.
Restored Salt Pan Kamaya
(Salt / Ako City, Hyogo Prefecture)
This article is an excerpt from “Window Workology,” a joint research project concerning windows and the behaviors around them done in collaboration with Tokyo Institute of Technologyʼs Yoshiharu Tsukamoto Laboratory.