Toyohira Ryoken

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  • Born: 1904/11/13
  • Died: 1990/1/27
  • Japanese: 豊平良顕 (Toyohira Ryôken)

Toyohira Ryôken was a prominent Okinawan journalist and newspaper editor of the 20th century, known as one of the founders of the Okinawa Times and for his involvement in protection of cultural properties.

Born and raised in Shuri, Okinawa, he attended school only up through middle school. He later worked for the Okinawa Asahi Shimbun and Osaka Asahi Shimbun (Naha office) before, in 1944 becoming chief editor of the Okinawa Shimpo. He and his men continued to produce newspapers from an underground headquarters beneath Shuri up until May 1945 (during the Battle of Okinawa).

In 1946, he worked to collect statues and other cultural properties from amidst the rubble left behind by the Battle of Okinawa, and opened a Shuri City Local Museum (Shuri shi kyôdo hakubutsukan) to hold and display them.[1] He would continue to be active in cultural protection and promotion throughout the postwar period.

In 1948, he helped found the Okinawa Times, and became vice-president and then president of the organization.

Toyohira was also a founding member of the Okinawa Bunka Kyôkai (Okinawa Culture Association) and Okinawa Mingei Kyôkai (Okinawa Folk Arts Association). In 1972, he was awarded the Kikuchi Kan Prize for his activities in promoting and supporting traditional culture. He also served for a time as the head of the group compiling the official Okinawa kenshi (History of Okinawa Prefecture), and as head of the Okinawa Bunkazai Hogo Shingikai (Okinawa Cultural Properties Protection Council).

He died on Jan 27, 1990.


  1. "Beni no ugushiku"「紅の御城(うぐしく)へ」, Momoto Special Issue: Shuri, Ryûkyû no miyako o aruku モモト 別冊:首里・琉球の都をあるく (2013/8), 56.