The Tidal Basin in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Lighting the Way
Japanese Stone Lantern
— National Mall & Memorial Parks, National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior —
Each year, the National Park Service and the National Council of State Societies conduct the Lantern Lighting Ceremony. The Embassy of Japan appoints a Cherry Blossom Princess for the occasion. As the audience counts down from five, the lantern is lit in an exciting, traditional event that signals the arrival of Spring in the Nation’s Capital.
Originally offered in 1921 to complement Japan’s 1912 gift of flowering cherry trees, this 20-ton, 17th century stone lantern soon fell victim to deteriorating relations between the United States and Japan. For thirty-two more years it stood next to its twin in Tokyo’s Ueno Park, awaiting developments. Tensions erupted on December 7, 1941 after the Japanese military bombed U.S. naval forces at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. When cultural ties, peace, amity and commerce reemerged following World War II, Ambassador Sadao Iguchi of Japan presented the lantern to the city of Washington, D.C. Dedicated on March 30, 1954, the lantern celebrates the centennial of the opening of peaceful relations between the two nations. This 1854 event is also honored by a Washington Monument commemorative stone, a
Erected 2009 by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Government & Politics • Notable Events • Peace • War, World II. A significant historical month for this entry is March 1927.
Location. 38° 53.211′ N, 77° 2.471′ W. Marker is in The Tidal Basin in Washington, District of Columbia. Marker is on Independence Avenue Southwest east of West Basin Drive Southwest, on the right when traveling east. Marker is in the grass off Independence Avenue Southwest, east of West Basin Drive, Southwest, near the crosswalk west of the Tidal Basin Bridge, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Washington DC 20024, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A Symbol of International Friendship (here, next to this marker); The 1912 Cherry Tree Plantings (here, next to this marker); The First Japanese Cherry Trees (within shouting distance of this marker); John Paul Jones Memorial (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); District of Columbia War Memorial (about 700 feet away); a different marker also named John Paul Jones Memorial Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial (approx. 0.2 miles away); Washington Monument (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in The Tidal Basin.
More about this marker.
Anatomy of a Stone Lantern - ishidourou:
A. houju - a sacred gem.
B. kasa - cherry blossom-adorned hood.
C. hibukuro - fire box with moon phases.
D. chuudai - lotus flower middle base.
E. soa - lantern support.
F. kiso - lantern base.
G. kidan - lantern platform.
(Images provided by the National Park Service, National Capital Region.)
Also see . . . Wikipedia entry for the National Cherry Blossom Festival. (Submitted on April 6, 2010, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
Additional keywords. National Cherry Blossom Festival
Credits. This page was last revised on June 5, 2020. It was originally submitted on April 28, 2009, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 2,860 times since then and 52 times this year. Last updated on April 6, 2010, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on April 28, 2009, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. 4, 5. submitted on April 6, 2010, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.