|Symbol of Kawagoe Still Telling Time in the Town of Koedo
eToki no Kane (The Bell of Time)f, a symbol of Kawagoe, is a clock tower that rises above the streets lined with historical Kura-style buildings that has been familiar with the public since the beginning of the Edo Period.
It is said that Sakai Tadakatsu, a Kawagoe feudal master, was the first to build such a clock tower approximately 400 years ago. It has been burned down by numerous fires, but has been rebuilt each time.
The current clock tower is the 4th generation that was rebuilt in 1893 after the big Kawagoe fire. This was done so by merchants who put aside rebuilding their own stores in order to quickly reconstruct the clock tower.
As time passed, the method of ringing the bell has changed from manual to mechanical. However, it still towers over the streets lined with historical Kura-style buildings and informs the town of the time. In 1996, the beautiful tone of the bell has been recognized as one of the e100 Sound Sceneries of Japanf that wants to be preserved by the Ministry of the Environment.
A wooden tower made of three tiers is approximately 16 meters high. The bell rings four times a day at 6 am, noon, 3pm and 6pm and further adds to the mood and ambiance of Koedo Kawagoe, blending in with the color of the sky, scenery of the town and the lingering scent.