Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Heihachiro Togo

From the Ando Teru birthplace marker, continue down route 20 about 4 blocks.  This will take you past the Yamamoto markers.  At the next intersection, turn left and walk a little more than halfway along Kagoshima-Chuo school.

From the marker:

"Meet the enemy from the sea on the sea
The birthplace of Heihachiro Togo
... The Anglo-Satsuma War decided the fate of a fifteen year-old boy, Togo Heihachiro...

During the Anglo-Satsuma War, a father and his three sons took the field against the English fleet. There were seven English warships with 101 muzzles of canons aiming at Kagoshima to seek compensation for the Namamugi-incident. In 1863, they went into battle and the people of Satsuma realized their lack of strength. Then one of the sons, Togo Heihachiro, staring at the sea set his heart on the Navy.

Togo Heihachiro, as well as other great men in Satsuma, was from Kajiya goju (a goju is an educational institute in each district of Satsuma). He was born in 1847 and he was called Chuugoro in his boyhood. Since he was small he developed a hard core to his character and he got special affection from Saigo Takamori [sic] brother, Kichijiro. After the Restoration, he studied seamanship in England and sailed all around the world in the Hampshire. After seven years of study, he took part in building Japanese warships at the Greenwich dockyard and returned to Japan.

Since then he dedicated his life to the Navy, and in the Russo-Japanese War he destroyed the Baltic Fleet of Russia to lead the Japanese fleet to victory. His name was known all over the world as the "Nelson of the East"."

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