Special Selection

Japanese Deerskin Firemen's Coats (haori)

Japan, having always been highly combustible due to the extensive use of wood, thatch and paper in construction , awarded much prestige to firemen who battled the frequent conflagrations.   Firemen were organized into brigades, each with its own insignia, name, and hierarchy.  After fighting a fire, presumably successfully, fireman would done their best coats for a celebratory parade through the town or village.