Clubs and Newsletters
Here is a list of clubs and organizations devoted to the study of nihontô. You might want to join several to test the waters out. If you have any major complaints about one please let me know. I probably will do little if there is just one small complaint from one individual. But I will be aware of it, and look for others.
JSSUS, one of the Grand Daddies of American Sword collecting, publishes bi-monthly and the yearly rates are $30 for the US and Canada, $40 for foreign. There are 40 to 50 pages per issue, and these normally include various articles relating to the Japanese Sword. Information is included on many aspects of the sword and by many different authors. About 1/3 of the publication is advertising. The JSSUS Newsletter Editor, Mike Yamasaki has been studying Nihonto for some time and is very good at kantei. The JSSUS does not have local meetings. It does have a lending library and through the mail booksales. JSS/US Treasurer, P.O. Box 5113, Albuquerque, NM 87103-0513 USA
The Nanka Token Kai Newsletter is published monthly, the yearly rates are $30 for US members, $35 for Canada and Mexico, and $40 for all others. It meets at 7:30 P.M. on the second Friday of every month at the Japanese Cultural Center at 16215 South Gramercy Place, in Gardena, California. The publication is about 16 pages per month, and includes very little advertising at this time. The articles tend to be wide spread in information but limited by the number of authors included. We are currently including many photographs and oshigatas of various material of interest. Anyone wishing to join may send a check or money order made out to Nanka Token Kai, along with their mailing address to Gloria Bill, 16241 Keats Circle, Westminster, California, 92683 USA. The NTK sells a limited amount of recently released books. You may also contact me (but do Not send checks) see the information at the end of this article.
Arizona Japanese Sword Club; contact Brian Quinn, Quinn 6 Drive, Paradise Valley, AZ 85253 (602) 998-7010
Boston Token Kai, meets the third Thursday of every month. Please contact Gerald B. Alferes, 6 Charity Stevens Lane, Fairhaven, MA 02719.
The Northern California Sword Club has a monthly publication. It meets the 2nd. Sunday of each month at 12:30 to 4 P.M. in the Japanese Cultural Center, 1840 Sutter Street, San Francisco, California. Contact Fred Weissberg, NC-JSC, P.O. Box 7156, San Carlos, California 94070. They are putting out a newsletter of about 15 pages.
The Colorado Token Kai contact [email protected] for more information.
Condell Kenkyu Kai Meets 1st. Saturday, contact Cary Condell, P.O. Box 590115, San Francisco, California, (415) 751-3784 [email protected]
The Florida Token Kai publishes 4 times a year, and has a yearly International Sword Show. Carl Hall is the President, and he may be reached at 17120 Gulf Boulevard, North Redington Beach, Florida 33708.
The Houston Token Kai meets monthly. For more information write Dick Marxen, 7676 Hillmont, Suite 120, Houston, Texas 77040 Call (713) 690-6789 ext. 122 or fax (713) 690-7020 or [email protected]
The Japanese Sword Club of Hawaii holds monthly meetings at the Honolulu Academy of the Arts. They are at 1 to 4 P.M. on the 1st Sunday of the month. Contact Al Bardi – President, 2333 Kapiolani Blvd, STE 30111, Honolulu, Hawaii 96826, (808) 941-8010
Japanese Sword Society of Australia started a newsletter in 1994, and it is published about 10 times a year. This newsletter is about 25 pages of various information. The price for membership is $35 Australian dollars per year. Contact the Secretary of the JSSA, 8 Crofts Avenue, Hurstville. 2220 Australia.
The New Mexico Token Kai holds 6 meeting per year. The person to contact is John Coffman, Box 1232, Edgewood, New Mexico, 87015 or (505) 281-4049.
The Nihon Bijutsu Token Hozon Kai is the group associated with the National Sword Museum in Tokyo, Japan. It once published a English edition of it’s excellent magazine but recently ceased. It publishes the Token Bijutsu, 12 times a year and cost about $200 per year. It has monthly meetings around Japan, as well as a Annual National Meeting and Sword Show. Unfortunately these annual shows while they contain many excellent examples, one is too rushed by the crowds to enjoy the viewing. Write to The Japanese Sword Museum, 4-25-10 Yoyogi, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, 151 Japan. Or if in Tokyo be sure to stop at the museum. It has a constant display of excellent swords and fittings. There is also a book store.
The Nihon Token Hozon Kai publishes 6 times per year for $100 to the US. Its magazine is in Japanese, but much of it is translated into English by Gordon Robson and sent with the following issue. They hold a annual meeting with one of the best sword shows available. There is always plenty of time for viewing works of the best sword smiths. The address is Nihon Token Hozon Kai, 4-19-14 Kasuya Setagaya-ku, Tokyo 157 Japan. And the phone is (03) 3305-0848, fax is (03) 3326-0163. The LA branch meets once a month has a Annual Sword Show, and a Shinza every 5 years. Be warned this is a serious Kai, the members are expected to be active, and very correct at the meetings. Selling or doing business at the meetings is strictly prohibited.
For the Metropolitan New York Japanese Sword Club contact John Prough, Secretary (201) 434-7119. His InterNet address is Contact [email protected] . This club has regular meetings and a monthly newsletter. The Newsletter is about 6 pages per month concerning general sword as well as local topics. The following is a comment from John Prough.
“We meet on the 4th Sunday of every month except for July, August, and December (when everyone is soooo busy ;-O ). The Place is: Racquet & Tennis Club, 370 Park Avenue (between 52 & 53 St.), New York, NY. The meetings run from 1-4 pm. The basic format of each meeting is: first hour for arrival, socializing, and business meeting (if any); second hour, beginners section; third hour, advanced topic. We sometimes break the beinners apart from the advanced if a) the beginners topic is going to run long i.e. sword terms; b) the advanced topic is going to be real advanced and long. Normally, the beginners are more than welcome to sit in the advanced topic, but they will not be coddled too. This means all basic info on swords is presumed already known. For example, we will not stop to explain what nioi is once again. Because it costs us to rent our meeting space, we ask visitors to pay $5, but otherwise all are welcome. Next meeting will be on Sept. 22, right after the Sotheby’s sale on the 20th.
Sacramento Japanese Sword Club, meetings 3rd. Tuesday 7 – 10 PM. Sacramento Garden and Art Center. Contact Sacramento Japanese Sword Club – membership, 7680 Howerton Drive, Sacramento, California 95831-4105
The Token Society of Great Britain always had a pretty good newsletter, but it has been a while since I have seen one. For more information contact Mr. Clive Sinclaire, Secretary, Token Society of Great Britain. 340 Hurst Road,
Bexley, Kent DA5 3LA, England.
The Vancouver Japanese Sword Appreciation Society, meets the 2nd. Tuesday. at the Vancouver Museum, 1100 Chestnut Street, Vancouver, BC, Canada V6J3J9 (604) 943-7171 FAX (604) 943-4907