In Hiroshima Prefecture, there are warehouse called “Hanya” which have earth and stone masonry walls and are used for the production and storage of ash. In this study, we investigated the constitution and use of ash houses to clarify the architectural characteristics of Hanya. Sixty-five shacks were found mainly in Miyoshi City, Hiroshima Prefecture, and most of them were found along the Mihara River in Miwaka Town and Aribara Town, and in Ueda Town.
We conducted a survey, interview, and literature research. As a result, we found the following.
(1) The ashes are created by piling up tree branches and fallen leaves, covering them with earth and burning them. It was built in a corner of the site away from the main house and in the fields, with the intention of building a fire inside. Many of them have been built more than 50 year ago. The role of the ash house has changed from burning and storage of ashes to almost a storage room.
(2) The most basic form was a single-story house with a gable-tile roof using the wooden-frame construction method. It has been confirmed that there are some cases of sheds and two-story structures based on this form. In all the warehouse that used the difference in elevation, the higher part of the ground was used as the entry point for bringing in grass, branches, etc. and for people to enter and exit.
The most distinctive feature is the wood framework, which consists of column tilted inward and a horizontal member "Sashimono", and a wall under Sashimono is constructed earth and stone masonry.
(3) Earth and masonry walls are constructed using materials from the neighborhood. There is vertical timber inside the wall to support the load from upper the wall or to be used as a guide during stacking. The height of the wall matches the height for burning ashes. In other words, it matches the height at which a human being can stack things without scaffold. There are two ways to stack the earth and stones, ① the stones are sparse in both size and stacking, and ② the stones are smaller at the top of the wall. Earth-stone masonry wall surfaces, especially outdoor wall surfaces, may be coated with a top coat.