Kumamoto University
The Memorial Museum of the Fifth High School

Memorial Museum of The Fifth High School

It includes official documents such as written appointments, old photographs, copies of Meiji era entrance examinations and student written entrance oaths, framed pictures of noted professors and celebrities, school life, etc. The breadth of preserved documentation concerning a high school under the old system of education cannot be found anywhere else in Japan.

In addition, the main classroom building (the present museum building) was built in 1890 and is now itself a valuable building which has been designated a 'national important cultural property'. This building and surrounding structures, now preserved and used by the university, represent the only example of the old High School system red brick architecture in existence today.

The Fifth High School was founded in 1887 and continued for 63 years until the educational system reform of 1949. It made a great contribution to higher education in early modern Japan. With the new educational system after the World War II in 1949, it was unified with other schools into Kumamoto University, and the site and building became part of Kumamoto University.

Since then, the red brick gate and main building have been loved as symbols of Kumamoto University by students, faculty and staff. The building and its exhibits have been open to the general public on weekends since 1993, but, triggered by the privatization of the national university system in 2006, it was decided to open the University Museum on weekdays as well to work towards contribution to society in earnest.


  • History of High School System Before 1949
  • Timeline
  • Prominent Professors
  • Prominent Alumni
  • The Fifth High School Structures