The modern history of Akihabara began in 1890, when the Akihabara Station was opened as a freight terminal linked to the Ueno Station. The station was opened for passenger traffic in 1925, and the area became a commercial venue for vegetables and fruits.
After 1937 Akihabara saw its first stores selling electronic parts such as vacuum tubes, and during the WWII and afterwards, the engineering students from the nearby Tokyo Denki University were buying here black market components for radios.
In the years following the end of the WWII, the black market slowly disappeared, being replaced by legit shops. During the 1960s, several household electronics stores were established here, selling washing machines and refrigerators, and thus Akihabara acquired its nickname of “Electric Town".
The “Electric Town” was further developed during the 1980s, when it became an important market for computers, musical equipment, games and manga/anime products, gradually becoming the Akihabara we know today…
Yesterday’s Japan Photo: