Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Important People From Miyazaki

Mansho Ito (1570 - 1612)
Born in Tonokori which is present day Saito, Mansho was selected by the Catholic faithful Daimyo of Oita Lord Otomo to be the head diplomat to an embassy that visited Pope Gregory XIII in 1586.  During the embassy trip Mansho won great respect of the Vatican and helped to advance the mission work of the Jesuits and Franciscans in Hyuga as well as all Kyushu.  Mansho also helped to assure Vatican help for the missions through more funding as the Catholic population in Japan was (and still is) so small.  He died from a long bout of pneumonia in Nagasaki.  One of his several graves is on the grounds of the Tonokori Castle ruins in Saito.  Others are in Obi, Nagasaki, and Oita.  A memorial of his emabassy trip is in Nagasaki where one of his bones is entombed in the monument, it was erected during the Meiji Era.  The Nagasaki memorial to Mansho is one of the most revered by Catholics and non-Catholics alike in Nagasaki.

Tanetatsu Akizuki (1833 - 1904)
The final of the Akizuki Daimyo of the Takanabe Domain, he was born in Takanabe.  Akizuki was selected to be vice president of the Kogisho, the precursor to the modern Japanese Diet.  He supported the abolition of the Council of Lords (daimyo) and supported Emperor Meiji's plans for rapid modernization and more open trade with Western and Asian nations.  Akizuki worked closely with Saigo Takamori until Saigo split with the reform government.

Jutaro Komura (1855 - 1911)
Born in Obi to a merchant family, Komura attended the clan school and went onto graduate from the prestigious Imperial University in Tokyo.  He was one of the first students to study abroad after graduation, he received a law degree from Harvard.  As one of the most skilled diplomats in Japan, Komura was an ambassador to Britain and helped negotiate the treaties of Portsmouth and Peking in 1905 that ended the Russo-Japanese War.

Admiral Jisaburo Ozawa
(1886 - 1966)
Born in the Koyu District of Takanabe, Ozawa was an able cadet at Japan's Naval Academy.  He also studied naval warfare at Anapolis.  He gained the nickname "The Gargoyle" because of his seriousness and stern disposition.  His first assignment as an officer was aboard destroyers based in Nagasaki Navy Yards.  During World WarII he made distinction for his command in the Philippine Theatre and was vice commander of Navy forces during the Battle of Leyte Gulf.  Upon return to the mainland he was promoted as the final Commander in Chief of the Combined Fleet.  After the war he was known for his charity work and for his support of Miyazaki becoming an industrial center.

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