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(From The Yomiuri Shimbun/Daily Yomiuri)
Telling Japan's toy story
Hiroko Ihara Daily Yomiuri Staff Writer
Much affection goes into creating old-fashioned toys by hand. Originally intended for children, they have become precious cultural assets that reflect local customs and the times in which they were made.
Shigeyoshi Inoue has devoted the past 40 years to collecting and preserving folk toys.
Inoue, 63, is director of the Japan Toy Museum, which opened in 1974 in Koderacho, Hyogo Prefecture.
The museum, 10 kilometers northeast of Himeji Castle, attracts 50,000 visitors a year.
Its six buildings, with their thick mortar walls, were modeled on traditional storehouses.
"Toys are interesting," Inoue said. "Even …