A MASTERWORK INTHE HEART OF TOKYOOn September 1, 1923, just before the opening ceremonies for the new hotel, the Great Kanto Earthquake struck Tokyo and Yokohama. It caused vast destruction but the Wright building suffered only minor damage. Looking north at the front end of thenorth wing and the Aikoku InsuranceBuilding (now the site of Nissei Theater) beyond.A huge slab of carved Oya volcanic tuff in the shape of a peacock is being readied for mounting on an exterior wall of the Wright Imperial during construction circa 1922. The stone erodes quickly and was one reason forthe Wright Imperial's relatively brief existence.Beginning construction on the Wright hotel.The battery of short piles is being driven. Note the hand-turned winch on the piledriver in foreground. The view is west; government buildings loom in the distance across the Hibiya area (now Hibiya Park).6

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