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Japanese Arms & Armor at the Springfield, MA Art Museum

Aug 15, 2005

For those of you in the Springfield, MA area who might not know it; the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum at the Quadrangle on State Street has a permanent display of Japanese Arms & Armor. I was there today and took a bunch of photos. I apologize for the quality of many of the images, but I had to take them through glass, without a tripod, and while trying to keep my three young kids from wrecking anything.

Besides the Japanese stuff, I found some Indonesian and some Early American weaponry. The museum also has a room full of large scale reproductions of classical Greek (and Roman?) sculpture. They also have some incredible pieces of furniture in the museum.

In addition to the Smith Museum, the Quadrangle has three other museums; the Springfield Science Museum which houses the Seymour Planetarium, a Museum of Fine Arts, and the CT Valley Historical Museum. They have a huge outdoor sculpture of Cat in the Hat creatures (Theodor Seuss Geisel aka Dr. Seuss was born in Springfield). The Springfield Library is right there too. The website for the museums is http://www.springfieldmuseums.org These museums are a great place for kids or adults to visit.

Also, just up the street is the Springfield Armory museum, http://www.nps.gov/spar I was only there once, but I seem to remember enjoying it.

I have posted a bunch of photos from the museums on my photobucket account, for anyone who wants to see them. The link is http://s44.photobucket.com/albums/f24/hephaestus61/Springfield Museum

I have included some of the photos in this post, so that you can see what can be found at the museums.










Here are a few more pictures from the museum.











My three dwarfs; Grumpy, Dopey, and Gabby -for size comparison.

WOW!!! :eek: Some beautiful pieces. I might have to make the trip to go check it out. Did you catch the names of any of the smiths for the swords you snapped shots of? Thanks for sharing!!!

Jerry, many of the blades had little card next to them with information about the items (and possibly the makers names). Unfortunately, my middle daughter, Grumpy in the picture was misbehaving so I couldn't spend much time looking.

PS: I zoomed in on the card for the blade you asked about and am now posting it. I believe that it contains the information you were hoping for.


Also, if you're going to drive down from Maine to see the Springfield Museums, you might want to take some extra time and see the Higgins Armory Nuseum in Worcester, MA. http://www.higgins.org It's a really cool place. There website says;
The Higgins Armory Museum enjoys the distinction of being the only museum in the Western Hemisphere entirely devoted to the study and display of arms and armor, but this is just one of many ways in which the Higgins is unique. Our founder, John Woodman Higgins, chose to house his fascinating and eclectic collection in a building of surprising contrasts, from its steel and glass Art Deco exterior to the vaulted Medieval Great Hall. Visitors will be amazed at the scope and breadth of historical, cultural and technological periods represented by the objects, amassed by a passionate collector over the course of a lifetime. Artifacts ranging from Corinthian helmets of ancient Greece to ornate suits of armor from the height of the Renaissance give our visitors an exciting glimpse into the past, while our many informative and entertaining programs help to interpret the collection in a broad cultural context.
I have a tanto identical to the one in the top of picture 6. Great pictures and reminds me of my trip around Windsor Castle. Thanks for posting them.