Plain concrete piers mainly constructed from the Taisho to early Showa era instead of masonry piers and have been used. Since the resistance of plain concrete piers to earthquakes is weaker than the reinforced concrete piers constructed after 1955, serious damage caused by earthquakes is observed in some plain concrete piers. Therefore, in this study, we investigated the current conditions of plain concrete piers for railway bridge and their damage caused by earthquake to obtain the fundamental data for further development of the effective countermeasure of plain concrete piers without increasing the cross section. According to the investigation of current situation and damage caused by earthquakes, the plain concrete piers were seriously damaged by even earthquakes with small seismic intensity. This may be caused by the fact that the criteria for seismic design of railway piers was not established before 1930. In addition, some slides occurs along the construction joint of concrete in the direction perpendicular to the railway track and serious damage was observed in the lower part of the construction joints. In the future, a series of shaking table tests using large scale replica of plain concrete pier and their numerical simulations are planed in order to clarify the damage mechanism of the plain concrete piers during earthquakes.