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Copyright, 1891, 

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ALTHOUGH personally acquainted with Mr. Nee- 
sima and familiar with the main events of his life, 
the reading of his letters and journal made upon me 
a fresh and deep impression. It seemed to me that 
no pen could reveal the personality of the man or 
tell the story of his life so effectively as his own. 
To say that one possesses certain qualities is well ; 
to see these qualities in action is better. With no 
thought of the public ear, Mr. Neesima, in his cor- 
respondence and journals, disclosed himself with the 
simplicity and modesty peculiar to him, and with the 
truthfulness of one who, unconscious of an audience, 
asks for no verdict. I have therefore endeavored to 
let him speak who speaks best, and this volume is 
essentially an autobiography. From the large amount 
of material at hand all that does not contribute to a 
vivid impression of Mr. Neesima has been, I trust, re- 
jected ; the intent being, not to write the history of 
the Japan mission, but to show forth this man in the 
light of his own acts, utterances, and thought. 

One other purpose has rendered this work a sacred 
one to a son. Mr. Hardy was averse to everything 
of the nature of a biography of himself. It is some- 


times saddening to think that a long life of unre- 
corded benefactions should have no memorial. But 
this thought is not true to fact. No word of a loving 
heart, no act of a helping hand, is lost ; and their re- 
sults, as wrought into the lives of men, are worthier 
memorials than the page that rehearses them or the 
tablet that commemorates them. Still, in the prepa- 
ration of these pages, which necessarily record one 
act of a life which, to those who knew it, was but the 
sum of such, it has been a pleasure to the son to 
throw as it were this side light upon a noble nature 
without violating a father's wishes. 

HANOVER, N. H., May 21, 189L 


CHAPTER L 1843-1865. 



CHAPTER IL 1865-1870. 

CHAPTER IIL 1870-1872. 



CHAPTER IV. 1872-1874 


CHAPTER V. 1874-1884. 


CHAPTER VI. 1884-1885. 





CHAPTER VH. 1885-1890. 





IN the summer of 1864 the brig Berlin, owned by 
Thomas Walsh & Co., of Nagasaki, arrived at Ha- 
kodate, consigned to Frederic Wilkie, *Esq., in com- 
mand of William B. Savory, of Salem, Mass. Just 
before leaving on the return voyage to Shanghai, 
Captain Savory was informed by Mr. Wilkie that a 
young Japanese, the friend of a native clerk in his 
office, was anxious to escape from Japan to the United 
States, where he hoped to obtain an education. Re- 
minding the captain that serious consequences were 
likely to follow his detection in the act of taking a 
native out of the country, Mr. Wilkie called the 
young man, then about twenty-one years of age, into 
his office, and Captain Savory, through the clerk, Mr. 
Munokite, who acted as interpreter, offered him a pas- 
sage to Shanghai provided he could reach the brig 
without assistance from those on board, and promised 
to do what he could towards securing his transfer to 
some vessel returning to the United States. As a 
result of this proposition, Mr. Munokite assisted 
his friend on board the Berlin during the night of 
July 18th. Owing to the presence of Japanese cus- 
tom officers on the vessel, the runaway was secreted 
in one of the cabin staterooms, and given to under- 
stand by signs that he must remain in hiding until 


the brig was under way. " I shall never forget," 
writes Captain Savory in 1883, " the first interview I 
had with him, or how happy he felt when he saw the 
shores of his country fading from his view, knowing 
that he was safe from all harm. His sole aim then 
was to learn the English language, that he might be 
able to translate the Bible into his own tongue for the 
benefit of his countrymen." 

On arriving at Shanghai the Berlin was ordered 
to Nagasaki. Knowing that his young protege could 
return to Japan only at the risk of his life, Captain 
Savory secured his transfer to the ship Wild Rover, 
owned by Alpheus Hardy & Co., of Boston, U. S. A., 
under the command of Capt. Horace S. Taylor, of 
Chatham, Mass. In September, 1864, Captain Tay- 
lor sailed for Foochoo, but remained in Chinese waters 
through the winter, touching at Hongkong, Saigon, 
Shanghai again, and Manilla, from which latter port 
he set sail April 1, 1865, for Boston, where he arrived 
in August, after a four months' passage. 

When this young Japanese came on board the 
Wild Rover, at Shanghai, he could speak but a few 
English words, although having some knowledge of 
the written language. On being asked his name he 
replied, " Neesima Shimeta." " I shall call you Joe," 
was the captain's laconic announcement. 

Shortly after reaching Boston, Captain Taylor in- 
formed his owner that he had a Japanese boy on the 
ship who was anxious to secure an education, and at 
Mr. Hardy's request Neesima was sent for. During 
the voyage he had acquired the ship's vocabulary, but 
was still unable to make known his wishes in intel- 
ligible English. To every question asked by Mrs. 
Hardy he replied only in monosyllables. It was im- 


possible to elicit from him his reasons for leaving 
Japan, and beyond the statement of Captain Taylor, 
a very reticent man, nothing could be learned of his 
aims or desires. The experience of the Mission Board 
in aiding foreigners under similar circumstances had 
not been encouraging. Neesima was therefore sent to 
the Sailor's Home, and requested to put in writing 
the reasons which led him to flee his native country. 

On October llth Mr. Hardy received the following 
statement : 

" I was born in a house of a prince [Itakura] in 
Yedo. My father [Neesima Tamiharu] was writing- 
master of the prince's house and his writer, and my 
grandfather was an officer of whole, 1 the prince's ser- 
vant. I began to learn Japan, and China too, from 
six years age, but at eleven years age my mind had 
changed quite to learn sword-exercise and riding horse. 
At sixteen years age my desire was deepened to learn 
China and cast away sword-exercise and other things. 
But my prince picked me up to write his daily book, 
although it would not have been my desire. I was 
obliged to go up his office one another day, and I must 
teach small boys and girls too, instead my father at 
home. Therefore I could not get in China school to 
learn China, but I read every night at home. A day 
my comrade lent me an atlas of United States of 
North America, which was written with China letter 
by some American minister. 2 I read it many times, 

1 That is, a steward, in charge of the private servants and attend- 
ants of the prince, pages, carriers, cooks, kago bearers, etc., an 
office of considerable dignity and responsibility. 

2 What is here called an " atlas " was a History of the United States 
written by Dr. Bridgman, of Shanghai, in China. After Dr. Bridg- 
man's death, his widow visited Dr. Brown, in Yokohama, and left with 
him a few copies of her husband's history, which were distributed by 


and I was wondered so much as my brain would melted 
out from my head, picking out President, Building, 
Free School, Poor House, House of Correction, and 
machine-working, etc. And I thought that a governor 
of our country must be as President of the United 
States. And I murmured myself that, O Governor 
of Japan ! why you keep down us as a dog or a pig ? 
We are people of Japan. If you govern us you must 
love us as your children. From that time I wished to 
learn American knowledge, but alas, I could not get 
any teacher to learn it. Although I would not like 
to learn Holland, I was obliged to learn it because 
many of my countrymen understood to read it. Every 
one another day I went to my master's house to 
learn it. 

" Some day I had been in the prince's office and I 
got none to write at all. Therefore I ran out from the 
office and went to my master's house. By and by my 
prince stepped into the office, wanting to see me ; but 
he saw nobody there, and he stayed me until I came 
back into. When he saw me he beated me. ' Why 
you run out from the office ? I would not allowed you 
to run out from there.' After ten days I ran out from 
there again, but he would not know about it. But 
alas ! in the next time he found out again I ran out 
from the office, and he beated me. 'Why you run 
out from here ? ' Then I answered to him that ' I 
wished to learn foreign knowledge, and I hope to un- 
derstand it very quickly ; therefore, though I know I 
must stay here, reverence your law, my soul went to 
my master's house to learn it, and my body was obliged 
to go thither too.' Then he said to me very kindly 

Dr. Brown. It was doubtless one of these copies which fell into Nee- 
nima's hands. 


that * you can write Japan very well, and you can earn 
yourself enough with it. If you don't run out from 
there any more I will give you more wages. With 
what reason will you like foreign knowledge ? Per- 
haps it will mistake yourself.' I said : ' Why will it 
mistake myself ? I guess every one must take some 
knowledge. If a man has not any knowledge I will 
worth him as a dog or a pig.' Then he laughed very 
hard about it, and said to me : ' You are stable boy.' 
Beside him, my grandfather, parents, sisters, friends, 
and neighbors, beated or laughed for me about it. 
But I never took care to them, and held my stableness 
very fast. After few months I got many business in 
the office, and I could not get out from there. Ah ! 
it made me many musings in my head and made me 
some sickness too. I would not like to see anybody, 
and would not desire to go out to play myself, but I 
liked only to stay in a peaceful room. I knew it is 
bad sickness, therefore I went to some doctor, hoping 
to get some medicine. After* he stay my sickness 
many times, he told me, 'Your sickness comes from 
your mind, therefore you must try to destroy your 
warm mind, and must take walk for healthfulness of 
your body, and it would be more better than many 
medicines.' The prince gave me many times to feed 
my weakness, and my father gave me some money to 
play myself. But I went every day to my master's 
house to learn Holland. I read up Holland grammar, 
spending many times, and I took a small book of na- 
ture, and I pleased to read it so much as I would say 
that this book would be more better than doctors' 
medicine to my sickness. When my sickness got bet- 
ter, after few months, the prince picked me up again 
to write his daily book, and I must stay in the office 


every day against his order. Ah ! I could not get out 
from there to learn Holland, but I got many times to 
read book at night, and I read through the book of 
nature at home, taking a dictionary of Japan and 
Holland. Alas ! the study of night-time caused me 
weak eyes, and I was obliged to stop it too. After 
ten weeks my weak eyes recovered entirely, and I 
began to read the book again ; but I could not under- 
stand some reasonable accounts in it. Therefore I 
purposed to learn arithmetic. But I had not any 
times to learn it. A day I asked to the prince, ' Please 
get me more time to take knowledge.' Then he let 
me get out from there thrice a week, although it was 
not enough to me. I went to some arithmetical school 
to learn it, and understood addition, subtraction, mul- 
tiplication, division, fractions, interest, etc. Then I 
took the book again, and understood some reasonable 
accounts in it. 

" Some day I went to the seaside of Yedo, hoping 
to see the view of thft sea. I saw largest man-of-war 
of Dutch lying there, and it seemed to me as a castle 
or a battery, and I thought too she would be strong 
to fight with enemy. While I look upon her one re- 
flection came down upon my head : that we must open 
navy, because the country is surrounded with water, 
and if foreigners fight to my country, we must fight 
with them at sea. But I made other reflection too : that 
since foreigners trade, price of everythings got high, 
the country got poorer than before, because the coun- 
trymen don't understand to do trade with the foreign- 
ers. Therefore we must go to foreign countries, we 
must know to do trade, and we must learn foreign 
knowledge. But the government's law neglected all 
my thoughts, and I cried out myself : Why govern- 


ment? Why not let us be freely? Why let us be 
as a bird in a cage or a rat in a bag ? Nay ! we must 
cast away such a savage government, and we must 
pick out a president as the United States of America. 
But alas! such things would have been out of my 

" From that time I went to a marine school of gov- 
ernment to learn navigation a week thrice. After 
many months I understood little algebra, little geom- 
etry, to keep log, and to take sun, to find latitude. 
Ah! the study of night-time caused me weak eyes 
again, and I could not study at all during the time of 
one year and a half which would not come again in 
my life. After my eyes got better I was obliged to 
go in the prince's office. That time was very hot and 
sickly season of Yedo. A day the sun shined very hard, 
and in the evening it had rained very heavy. Then I 
felt cold and chilled myself. The next morning my 
head began to ache, and my body was so hot as a fire 
would burn within me. I could eat nothing, but 
drank cold water only. After two days measles raised 
up all over my body. When the measles got better 
my eyes began to spoil, and I played and spent many 
times very vainly. A day I visited my friend, and I 
found out small Holy Bible in his library that was 
written by some American minister with China lan- 
guage, and had shown only the most remarkable events 
of it. I lend it from him and read it at night, because 
I was afraid the savage country's law, which if I read 
the Bible, government will cross whole my family. I 
understood God at first, and he separated the earth 
from firmament, made light upon the earth, made 
grass, trees, creatures, fowls, fishes. And he created 
a man in his own image, and made up a woman, cut- 


ting a man's side bone. After he made up all things 
of universe, he took a rest. That day we must call 
Sunday or Sabbath day. I understood that Jesus 
Christ was Son of Holy Ghost, and he was crossed 
for the sins of all the world ; therefore we must call 
him our Saviour. Then I put down the book and 
look around me, saying that : Who made me ? My 
parents ? No, God. Who made my table ? A carpen- 
ter? No, my God. God let trees grow upon the 
earth, and although God let a carpenter made up my 
table, it indeed came from some tree. Then I must 
be thankful to God, I must believe him, and I must 
be upright against him. From that time my mind 
was fulfilled to read English Bible, and purposed to 
go to Hakodate to get English or American teacher 
of it. Therefore I asked of my prince and parents to 
go thither. But they had not allowed to me for it, 
and were alarmed at it. But my stableness would 
not destroy by their expostulations, and I kept such 
thoughts, praying only to God : Please ! let me reach 
my aim. 

" And I began to read English from some Japanese 
teacher. A day I walked some street of Yedo, and 
suddenly met a skipper of a schooner, who knew me 
well and love me too. I asked to him, ' When your 
vessel going ? ' He answered, 4 She will bound to 
Hakodate within three days.' I told him, *I got 
warm heart to go thither. If you please, let me go 
thither.' He said me : ' I will take you to go thither, 
but perhaps your prince and your parents will not 
allow it to you. You must ask first to them.' After 
two days I took up some money, little clothing, and 
little books, and left quite my home, not thinking that 
if this money was gone how I would eat, or dress my- 


self, but only casting myself into the providence of 
God. In the next morning I went on board of the 
schooner that would bound to Hakodate. When I 
canie to Hakodate I searched some teacher of Eng- 
lish, but I could not find him with many ways. There- 
fore my head was quite changed to run away from the 
country. But one thought stayed me, that my grand- 
father and parents would sorrow about it, and it bal- 
anced my mind little while. But after one reflection 
came upon my head, that although my parents made 
and fed me, I belong indeed to Heavenly Father; 
therefore I must believe him, I must be thankful to 
him, and I must run into his ways. Then I began to 
search some vessel to get out from the country. 

" After many labor I got into an American vessel 
which would bound to Shanghai. After I came in 
Shanghai river, I joined to the ship Wild Rover, and 
had been in the China coasts with her about eight 
months ; with the passage of four months, I come in 
Boston harbor by the kindness of God. When I saw 
first the ship's captain, H. S. Taylor, I begged to him 
if I get to America : ' Please ! let me go to school and 
take good education ; therefore I shall work on the 
board as well as I can, and I will not take any wages 
from you ; ' and he promised me if I get home he will 
send me to a school and let me work on the board as 
his servant. Although he not give me any money, he 
bought for me any clothing, cap, shoes, and any other 
thing. At sea he taught me to keep log, to find out 
latitude and longitude. When I come here the cap- 
tain let me stay on the board long while, and I had 
been with rough and godless men who kept the ship, 
and every one on the wharf frightened me. No one on 
the shore will relieve you, because since the war the 


price of everythings got high. Ah ! you must go to 
sea again. I thought too I must work pretty well for 
my eating and dressing, and I could not get in any 
school before I could earn any money to pay to a 
school. When such thoughts pressed my brain I 
could not work very well, I could not read book very 
cheerfully, and only looked around myself long while 
as a lunatic. Every night after I went to bed I 
prayed to the God : Please ! don't cast away me into 
miserable condition. Please ! let me reach my great 
aim ! Now I know the ship's owner, Mr. Hardy, may 
send me to a school, and he will pay all my expenses. 
When I heard first these things from my captain my 
eyes were fulfilled with many tears, because I was 
very thankful to him, and I thought too : God will 
not forsake me." 

To this remarkable statement was due the begin- 
ning of that interest which Mr. and Mrs. Hardy felt 
in Neesima, an interest which deepened with the years, 
and which subsequent events amply justified. 

During the voyage from Japan, Captain Taylor had 
told Neesima that the owner of the ship might find 
him some employment in Boston, and possibly provide 
for his education. In this hope, but perplexed by 
the difficulty of pursuing his studies while earning his 
living, Neesima had written the following on some 
scraps of paper which he confided to the captain be- 
fore reaching Boston : 

" I must tell you that I am most concerned for it 
that I will not reach my great aim, because I made 
such thoughts as hereafter : 

" Though the ship's owner will be very kindly to 
me, perhaps he will not send me to school so long as 
I may reach my great aim, because he will spend his 


moneys very vainly for me, and I guess he will spend 
least twenty dollars a month for my eating, dressing, 
useful things of my study ; and if he spend so much 
moneys for me, he will give me some great work to 
do. I must work almost all day. Although I will 
not loathe such work, perhaps it will hindered good 
time of my study. If I not understand good know- 
ledge I may not come back to Japan to see my prince, 
family, friends, because of my shameful condition, 
and they will worth me as a dog or a cat because I 
left home very wickedly, hoping to get some know- 

"I am concerned about it as much as my brain 
would melted out, and when such musings fell on my 
head I could not read book at all, I would not do 
anything very cheerfully, and I looked around myself 
long time as a lunatic, because it confused my mind 
very much. But I know not yet will I take what 
course of my life, and- I know not too any trade to 
earn myself. Alas ! I am poor and foolish. I have 
no one around me to relieve me except you. Then I 
wish heartily to you that please let me direct into 
some good way which I may reach my aim. If you 
let me reach my ami I will never forget your kindness 
and virtuousness. 

" Although I will go down behind a grave, my soul 
will go to heaven to tell to God about it and let him 
bless you with the truth of God. 

" Please let me hear that Mr. Hardy will let me 
go to what kind of school, and I wish that he gave 
me remainder of his table for my eating, old one of 
his clothing for my dressing, ink, pen, paper, pencil, 
for using of my study." 

The above was not seen by Mr. Hardy at the time, 


but was sent to him seventeen years later by the widow 
of Captain Taylor. 

On learning that Mr. Hardy had decided to send 
him to school, Neesima wrote him the following letter : 

I am very thankful to you. You relief me, but I 
can't show to you my thankfulness with my words. But 
I at all times bless to God for you with this prayer : 
O God ! if thou hast eyes, look upon me. O God ! 
if thou hast ears, hear my prayer. Let me be civil- 
ized with Bible. O Lord ! thou send thy Spirit upon 
my Hardy, and let him relief me from sad condi- 
tion. O Lord ! please ! set thy eyes upon my Hardy, 
and keep out him from illness and temptation. 
Your obedient servant, 


In 1885, when, after a lapse of twenty years, this 
runaway occupied a position of honor and influence 
in his native land, he sent to those whom he loved to 
call his American parents, and whose name he had 
adopted, a fuller account of his early life and the cir- 
cumstances under which he left Japan. From this 
narrative, which affords an interesting picture of his 
Japanese home, the following pages are taken : 

KYOTO, JAPAN, Aug. 29, 1885. 


To whom I owe more than to my own parents for 
their boundless love and untiring interest manifested 
in my welfare, both temporal and spiritual, I most 
gratefully and affectionately dedicate this brief narra- 
tive of my younger days. 

Their ever grateful child, 



" I was born in a family which served a prince of 
Japan, who had his palace in the city of Yedo (called 
Tokyo, the eastern capital, since 1868), within a short 
distance of the Shogun's castle, and his possession 
of land in a province of Kodzuke, the castle town of 
which is called Annaka, and is situated on one of the 
two roads directly extending from Yedo to Kyoto. 
It is a humble town having a population not exceed- 
ing four thousand, and lies seventy miles nearly north 
of the capital. His palace at Yedo was surrounded 
by the extensive houses of his retainers, which exactly 
formed a square inclosure. 

" I was born within this inclosure on the 14th of 
January, in the year of 1843. 1 Previous to my birth 
four girls were born. So I was the first son in the 
family. In those days, when the feudal system was 
still in full sway, boys were much preferred to girls 
in those families which are entitled to wear two 
swords as a mark of the rank called Samurai by the 
native tongue ; for there must be a male heir to the 
family in order to perpetuate its rank and allowance 
in case of the father's death. For that reason my 
birth caused great joy to the family, and particu- 
larly to my grandfather. When he heard a boy was 
born he exclaimed Shimeta I which is a most joyous 
exclamatory phrase often used by our people when 
they come to realize some long cherished hopes or 

" Just about that time it was a part of our New Year 
days, as our old lunar month came a month later than 
our solar year. 2 It was then a high time with us. 

1 Old Japanese style. According to our mode of reckoning, Feb- 
ruary 12, 1843. 

3 The Gregorian calendar was not adopted by the Japanese govern- 


Every house was decorated by some complicated fan- 
tastic ornaments called Shime. At the day dawn, 
just before the ornaments were removed from the 
house, a male babe was introduced into the family. On 
account of the Shime, a good omen, I was doubtless 
named after it, and was called Shimeta, a man of the 
Shime. But a story went round among our neighbors 
that I was named after my grandfather's exclamation 
/Shimeta ! when I was born. It may have a double 
meaning. At any rate I was called Shimeta, and it 
was written after the family name Neesima, accord- 
ing to our usage. Of course I have no knowledge of 
the events that happened in my home during my 
babyhood. But, so far as I recollect, I was a pet child 
of the family, especially of my grandfather. I was 
chiefly brought up on his lap. I have, also, some 
faint recollection of being carried occasionally by my 
grandmother. I was often taken out of doors on my 
sisters' backs, when my mother busied herself at home 
with sewings and mendings. 

" At my fourth year my brother was born. I can 
well remember how happy I was with that occa- 
sion. I also remember what a tiny babe he was, 
and I thought how nice it would be when he grew 
a little larger and I might spin a top or fly a kite for 

" At my fifth year I was taken to the temple of a 
god, 1 who was supposed to be my life guardian, to 

me.nt until 1872. Prior to this time the civil year was a lunar year 
of 12 months of 29 and 30 days alternately, a mode of reckoning intro- 
duced from China in 602 A. D., and requiring, at definite periods, the 
interjection of an intercalary month of varying length in order to har- 
monize the lunar and solar periods. 

1 Every Japanese child is placed by his parents at an early age 
under the protection of some Shinto deity, whose foster-child he be- 


offer to him the thanks of the family for his protec- 
tion over me. It was a most joyous occasion to the 
family. My father bought for me two little swords 
to wear then. A nice suit of silk dressing was also 
made for me to wear on that occasion. I was accom- 
panied by my parents and grandparents to present 
myself at the temple. When we came home I was 
loaded with candies, little kites, tops, and all sorts of 

" I remember quite well what impressive thing the 
death of a person was when my grandmother departed 
to the world beyond. She was a woman of an ami- 
able disposition, and used to give much alms to the 
poor in her latter life. She was often told by some 
Buddhist priests that her future abode should be the 
happy Nirvana, on account of her constant almsgiv- 
ing. I recollect very well what she said at her death- 
bed : ' O, I am going ! O, I am going ! ' I supposed 
then that she was intending to go to the happy Nir 
vana, to be received into the bosom of the merciful 
Buddha. I also remember what confusion took place 
in my home at her funeral, how our neighbors came 
to our house, how they tried to console the bereaved 
family, and how generously my grandfather provided 
for them many kinds of sweetmeats, rice, sake, etc. 
I was then six years old. When her funeral took 
place I followed in the procession, partly walking and 
partly being carried on a man's back. We started 
from home early in the morning on account of the dis- 
tance of the temple, in the yard of which she was to 

comes. Until fifteen years of age, Neesima worshiped the family 
gods which stood upon a shelf in one of the rooms of his father's 
house ; but subsequently, seeing they did not partake of the food pro- 
vided for them, refused to do so. 


be buried with her ancestors. We were all received 
in the large hall of the temple, where numbers of the 
priests appeared in purple, red, and black robes, mak- 
ing a solemn ceremony by beating drums, striking 
cymbals, and repeating some sacred writings of Bud- 

" While I was quite young my father used to take 
me out to t'emples of the different gods to worship, 
as certain days of the months or years are especially 
devoted to them. On those occasions the temple 
grounds were generally crowded by all sorts of ped- 
dlers, selling pictures, kites, tops, divers kinds of play- 
things, cakes, candies, fruits, flowers, shrubs, etc. 

" I must not forget to mention here what devoted 
pagan worshipers my father and grandfather were. 
They never missed going to the temples to worship on 
special days, and also kept numerous gods at home. 
A dozen of them were kept in the sitting-room, a 
dozen more in the parlor, with the tablets of their an- 
cestors, and at least a half dozen in the kitchen. They 
offered them tea and rice in the morning and lights 
in the evening. At each offering they made the most 
profound bows before them, and made some prayers 
in behalf of the family. So far as I can recollect, 
they must have been thoroughly convinced that the 
life and prosperity of the family were depending on 
them. Being quite young and thoughtless, I supposed 
that my grandfather and father were the best people 
that ever lived in the world. Of course, I followed 
their example set before me, and often bowed myself 
down before these dumb idols, having some childish 
ambition that I might acquire some wisdom and skill 
to become an accomplished samurai. 

"As my father was a teacher of penmanship, he 


was especially devoted to a god of penmanship and 
learning, and went to his temple and prayed to him 
that his son might become skillful in penmanship. I 
knew most too well how desirous he was that I should 
become his successor and helper in teaching. I really 
disliked to devote myself to that tedious business, but 
I was compelled by him to spend half a day through- 
out years of my younger days in writing those perpen- 
dicular characters over and over after the copies care- 
fully written by him. 

" With regard to the home education I received in 
my younger days, I might here narrate one instance. 
One day I was naughty and refused to make an errand 
for my mother, and when she gave me a scolding I 
returned her an improper word. My grandfather 
heard it, came directly after me and caught me with- 
out saying a word, rolled me up in a night coverlet, and 
shut me up in a closet. After an hour's confinement 
I was released from the punishment, which was, I be- 
lieve, the first one I ever received from my grand- 
father. I thought then he was too severe for a trifling 
offense, and went to a corner of the parlor to weep. 
After a while he came to me and urged me gently 
that I must no longer weep. Then he told me a story 
of the bamboo-shoot, in a most tender and affection- 
ate manner I ever heard before. It was told in a na- 
tive poem which means as follows : ' If I do not care 
for it, I would never use my rod for shaking the snow 
off from the down-bent branch of a young bamboo- 
shoot.' Then he asked, ' Do you understand its mean- 
ing, my dear?' and explained its meaning himself. 
* You are young yet, and just as tender as a bamboo- 
shoot. If your evil inclinations spoil you, as a slight 
pressure of snow might easily break down the tender 


shoot, how sad I should be, my dear. Do you suppose 
I am unkind to you by thus punishing you ? ' I re- 
mained speechless then, but I understood full well 
what he meant, and what kind intention he had for cor- 
recting me. I was really ashamed of my naughtiness, 
and thought that my grandfather was very kind in 
thus punishing me. I believe this talk made a deep 
impression on my young mind, and helped me to be- 
have much better than before. However, I was just 
gay and playful as other boys were. I was very fond 
of spinning tops, rolling hoops, and flying kites. I 
was especially fond of the latter play, and when I 
went out to fly my kite often forgot to come home at 
the regular mealtime, which troubled my mother ex- 
ceedingly. On that account my father refused to buy 
any more kites for me ; so I secured everything nec- 
essary for making one without his knowledge, and 
made a first-rate one myself. How gay I was then 
I can hardly describe, when I saw it going straight 
up toward the blue sky. I was also very fond of 
running and jumping. A scar on my left temple is a 
reminder of an accidental fall which was a great hu- 
miliation to me, and confined me at home nearly two 

" Since then I gave up those boyish rough plays, 
and became fond of staying at home, either for study- 
ing or writing. I took also some drawing lessons from 
our neighbor, and drew birds, flowers, trees, and moun- 
tains, after the regular Japanese style, without a per- 
spective. I was just over nine years old then. 

" Being the heir ta the family, I was specially 
warned by my mother to make most profound bows 
to those higher officers employed by my prince. It 
was her ambition that through their favor I might be 


promoted to a rank much higher than my father's. 
But I did not pay any attention to such a matter, as 
some young fellows of our neighbors did, that is, 
to be very polite in bowing, and expert in using flat- 
tering terms. My boyishness disliked it. Further- 
more I was very shy, and had some slight impediment 
in my speech. I could hardly speak distinctly when 
I was obliged to converse with strangers. Sometimes 
I refused to speak even to our neighbors. It caused 
a great anxiety to my mother. Either through her 
influence or my father's decision, I was sent to a 
school of etiquette, to learn to make the most pro- 
found bows, most graceful manners and movements, 
etc., in a company of noblemen, and to acquire also 
the polite style of conversational phrases. My teacher 
seemed to me a man of real genius. He told me 
many interesting stories, and invited me to come to 
him as often as I could. I believe I spent more than 
a year in acquiring the old-fashioned politeness, al- 
though I was not aware at the time of its benefit. 

" All the events of my younger life took place within 
the square inclosure belonging to my prince. It was 
a mere little spot, but to me it was no small world. 
Whatsoever events took place, or whatsoever gossip 
was circulated, all seemed to my boyish mind no small 
affair. And above all, the prince seemed a regular 
terror to us. He could either behead us or expel us 
at his own pleasure, as disgraced servants. Any little 
favor conferred upon us from him was considered by 
us a great luck. So everybody belonging to him de- 
sired to secure his favor through his elder men, who 
were really the governors of his whole estate. My 
father used to take me to one of these elder men while 
JL was quite young ; afterward I went to his house 


alone, without being accompanied by my father, be- 
cause I was invited by him to come there as often as I 
would. As he was childless, he was always delighted to 
have me come and play with him when he had nothing 
in particular to do. Staying there towards evening, 
I often slept on his lap and was carried home in his 
arms. When I began to draw some pictures, I used 
to take them to show to him, and he was really de- 
lighted to see the progress I made. He often invited 
me to come to his house when he had company. As 
I had acquired some manner of politeness at the school 
of etiquette, especially in the cup-bearing and waiting 
upon gentlemen at their meals or banquets, I was 
quite serviceable to him on such occasions. He often 
took me with him when he went out to worship his 
ancestors or his guardian gods. I was really attached 
to him, because he loved me as if I were his own 
son. He was a good horseman and expert in shoot- 
ing arrows. Moreover, he was a man of some char- 
acter. He often rebuked his prince for his extreme 
arbitrariness, and also for his excessive drinking. So 
the prince felt uncomfortable to keep him near him, 
and sent him off to his castle town Annaka to repre- 
sent him to the people, although it was called by the 
prince a promotion. What a painful day it was for 
me when he was ready to leave Yedo for Annaka ! I 
went as far as an outskirt of that immense city, with 
my father and many others, to see him off. I wept 
bitterly when I took my last farewell. He was some- 
what affected, but manfully concealed it and showed 
me an affectionate and touching smile. His last word 
to me was, ' Good-by, Shimeta ; be a good boy. When 
you grow up larger, come up to Annaka to see me.' 
Then he bade his attending servants to start for the 


journey. He was then carried away on a kago [pal- 
anquin], being followed by many attendants, and I 
came home with my father dreadfully tired and disap- 
pointed. This was one of the great events that hap- 
pened to me within the first decade of my life. The 
marriages of my two elder sisters took place within 
this decade. 

" Just about this time the country was in a most 
painful condition. The people were accustomed to 
peace under the reign of the Tokugawa family, nearly 
three centuries. Their laws were rigid and fixed. 
Their executive officers were extremely suspicious and 
fearfully oppressive. The ambition of the people was 
completely crushed down. Many samurai had almost 
forgotten how to use their swords. Coats of mail 
were stored in warehouses merely as curiosities, and 
were useless from decay. In fact the people had 
become cowardly, corrupt, and effeminate. Licen- 
tiousness prevailed almost universally throughout the 
country. Truly some reformation was needed. A few 
far-sighted patriots lamented over this sad state, and 
cherished some hope for a regular renovation. But it 
was almost beyond their expectations to see it. Just 
about that time [1853] the famous American fleet com- 
manded by Commodore Perry made a sudden appear- 
ance in our waters. It caused an awful commotion in 
the country. The people were frightened by the ter- 
rible sound of the American cannon. However, most 
of the leading princes of the country raised a most 
impatient war-cry against the Americans, and urged 
the government of the Shogun to expel them from 
our waters at once. But we had no forts, no war- 
ships, no cannons, no trained army to fight with. The 
Shogun's chief counselors were quick enough to see 


how useless it would be to attempt to expel the Amer- 
icans from our waters. They knew also that the 
motive of the Americans was entirely peaceful, and 
agreed with them to open a few ports for commerce. 
This very treaty with the Americans was soon fol- 
lowed by treaties with some European powers. But 
the action of the Shogun's counselors offended these 
impetuous princes. All sorts of charges were brought 
upon his government. He was called by them a 
coward, a slave to the foreign barbarians, etc. The 
party spirit was soon kindled. The leading princes 
of Kyushu and Shikoku islands leagued together and 
rose up against him. They sent out a number of their 
spirited young samurai all over the country to stir 
up the hatred of the people against the misgovernment 
of the Shogun, and also against the foreign nations. 
The cry to restore the imperial reign and expel the 
foreign barbarians then became almost universal. It 
was indeed the starting-point of our late revolution, 
which happily resulted in the restoration of the impe- 
rial reign, and also in the freer opening of the foreign 
intercourse, instead of expelling foreigners from our 

"I must not forget to mention something of my 
prince in connection with this extraordinary period of 
our national history. He was quite accomplished in 
Chinese classics, and was well known in the country 
as the finest scholar among the princes. He was a 
man of far sight, and quite fixed in his purpose. 
About five or six years before the American fleet ap- 
peared in our waters, this prince, who spent most of 
his time in his own secluded palace, perceived that the 
military system of the country must be improved, and 
the people must be better educated and well informed. 


He selected a few promising young men out of his 
own retainers and sent them to a military school just 
established under the auspices of the Shogun's gov- 
ernment. He gave out an order to his retainers and 
compelled every one of them, except some aged ones, 
to take lessons in sword-fencing and horseback riding. 
Furthermore, he established a Chinese school and 
made education compulsory to his younger subjects. 
As he was subject to excessive drinking, and was very 
fond of giving costly gifts to his favorite friends and 
subjects in his younger days, he found his treasury 
almost empty when he came to equip his retainers 
with foreign arms. There was no other way for him 
to procure money than to impose an extra duty on the 
farmers and merchants living in his dominions, for 
purchasing cannon and muskets of the European 
model, just introduced to the country by the Holland- 
ers. He confiscated all the bronze bells from the 
Buddhist temples found in his dominion, and cast a 
number of the field-pieces and mortars out of them. 
By making such an extraordinary effort he was ena- 
bled to provide a sufficient number of cannon and 
muskets of the new model for the use of all his retain- 
ers. Accepting the order of the prince, I began to go 
to riding and fencing schools at the eleventh year of 
my age. I did not enjoy the horseback riding so much 
as I did the sword-exercise. Horses were not well 
trained ; some of them were just ugly as can be, and 
I was often carried on their backs instead of riding 
upon them. 

"At the age of fourteen I gave up these exercises 
and devoted myself closely to the study of the Chinese 
classics. Just about this time my prince invited a 
native scholar [Dr. Sugita], who was well versed in 


Dutch, to his court, to teach his subjects that strange 
language. He selected only three youths out of his 
subjects to take lessons from him. I was one of the 
three chosen by him and the youngest of all. I stud- 
ied Dutch with him nearly one year. His scholarship 
was soon made known to the Shogun's government, 
and he was appointed to go to Nagasaki to receive 
instruction from the Hollanders in engineering and 
navigation. After he went away I gradually lost my 
interest in studying Dutch, and suspended it tempora- 
rily. In the meanwhile I made considerable progress 
in Chinese. On that account, as a special favor, I 
was promoted by my prince to be an assistant teacher 
in his Chinese school, and became more interested in 
studying that language. At that time the prince be- 
came seriously ill and died. It caused me a great 
disappointment and sorrow. His younger brother 
succeeded him and became our prince. But he was 
far inferior to his deceased brother in every respect. 
He cared nothing for improving the condition of his 
retainers. All the affairs of the prince's court as- 
sumed a different aspect. He found his enjoyment 
chiefly in eating and drinking. He often listened to 
his favorite mistress for promoting or rejecting his 
officers. I felt then all my hope for carrying out my 
study was gone. However, I was not idle in securing 
my purpose, and endeavored to keep up my study as 
much as I could. My father became doubtful whether 
it would be wise to pursue my study any further. He 
was afraid of my being influenced by those manner- 
less and careless fellows he often found among our 
students. Beside that, he was still cherishing a hope 
that I should become his successor in the penmanship 
school. So he began to interfere with my study and 


to urge me to assist him in teaching the penmanship. 
But I was very unwilling to do so. 

" In those days it was almost next to an impossi- 
bility for a son to disobey his father's command. So 
I was bound to obey him. The only hope I had for 
obtaining my aim was to secure some favor from my 
Chinese teacher, and also from that gentleman in An- 
naka whom I have previously mentioned. While I was 
seriously contemplating on the subject, those friends 
were taken away from me by death, one after another, 
within a few months. How disheartened I was then ! 
I often exclaimed within myself : ' My prince is gone, 
and my teacher also. The friend at Annaka, on whom 
I hung the last cord of my hope, is also taken away 
from me. What unfortunate fellow I must be ! Who 
will help me to continue my study ? What will be 
my fate in future ? ' I felt I was left almost alone 
and helpless in the world. 

" When I completed my fifteenth year I was obliged 
to commence my service to the prince. It was my 
duty to sit in the little office connected with the front 
entrance hall of his palace. There were always more 
than half a dozen persons in the office. Our business 
was to watch the hall, and whenever the prince went 
out or came home we were all obliged to sit on one 
side of the hall in a row and bow ourselves profoundly 
before him upon the matted floor. Beside that, we 
used to keep some records for him. But our chief 
occupation was to spend our time in silly gossip, talk- 
ing, laughing, and frequent tea-drinkings. I found it 
almost unbearable to keep company with them. Yet 
there was no way for me to excuse myself from its 
participation. Furthermore, I was much prevented 
by them from studying in the office. Early in the 


spring of my seventeenth year, my prince was ordered 
by the Shogun to go to Osaka to keep watch of that 
great castle built by our renowned hero Hideyoshi, 
who conquered and governed the whole empire of 
Japan about three centuries ago. Of course the prince 
took with him a number of his retainers. My father 
was one of them. He followed the prince as his scribe, 
und left his school in my charge. I was also ordered 
by the prince to be a scribe in his court at Yedo dur- 
ing his absence. While I was so much pressed by a 
double duty, both at home and in the prince's court, a 
fresh desire for knowing the European nations came 
to me, and I found it almost irresistible. Dutch was 
then the only European language we could study. I 
found a good teacher in that language within a mile 
from my home. I used to go there whenever I could 
spare a little time, although I was much tied up to 
many duties. But when I became intensely interested 
in the new study, I began to neglect my duties, so in- 
excusably imposed upon me by my prince and my fa- 
ther. I often absented myself from the office, although 
I was required to be there, I did this purposely, be- 
eause I wished to be discharged from my service on 
account of my disregarding the prince's order. But 
as there was no one to take my place there, I was still 
kept in the office. My frequent absences gave the 
superior officer, who kept the prince's palace during 
his absence, great inconvenience. He found much 
writing to be done, but on coming to the office he did 
not find me there, and often scolded me. But I did 
not mind it. I simply requested him to discharge me 
from the service at once. Finding me beyond his 
control, he often summoned my grandfather to his 
office and scolded him also. So my grandfather be- 


gan to meddle with my study. But I remaiued as 
obstinate as ever, and kept up my study even in this 
trying way. When my father returned he resumed 
his service, and I was released. Still I could not get 
rid of the service of the prince altogether. 

" Just about that time the country was in fearful 
commotion. Assassination and bloodshed occurred 
here and there almost every day. Being frightened 
by this, my coward prince selected a number of the 
younger persons from his retainers to be his life- 
guards. Unfortunately, I was chosen to be one of 
them. Whenever he went out of his palace I was 
obliged to follow him. Early in the spring of my 
eighteenth year I followed him as far as Annaka. Of 
course he was carried in a kago, and we, his lifeguards, 
were obliged to follow him on foot. It required in 
me no small amount of patience to be forced into 
such a servitude. When I came home from Annaka 
I was utterly disgusted with the prince's service. I 
often planned to run away from home in order to get 
rid of it, but I was not bold enough to do so. I was 
too fondly tied up to my home, and was much afraid 
of causing great sorrow and disgrace to my parents 
and grandfather. While I was in this hard fix I was 
not discouraged with the hopeless outlook, and at- 
tempted to secure a favor from one of the prince's elder 
men. Through his influence I was partially exempted 
from the prince's service. How glad I was then when 
I found more leisure hours to study. At that time I 
had just acquired Dutch enough to read a simple 
treatise on physics and astronomy. But I was utterly 
ignorant of mathematics, and the simplest calculations 
in this treatise were beyond my comprehension. So I 
was prompted to go to the Shogun's naval school just 


established in Yedo, and take lessons in arithmetic 
from its very rudiments. I believe it was then the 
only school in the country where I coidd find efficient 
teachers in mathematics. There I had chances to 
hear from my teachers of the foreign steamers, and 
sometimes I wished to see them. One day I happened 
to walk on the shore of Yedo Bay and caught a sight 
of the Dutch warships lying at anchor. They looked 
so stately and formidable ! When I compared those 
dignified sea-queens side by side with our clumsy and 
disproportioned junks, nothing further was needed to 
convince me that the foreigners who built such war- 
ships must be more intelligent and a superior people 
to the Japanese. It seemed to me a mighty object 
lesson to rouse up my ambition to cry out for the 
general improvement and renovation of my country. 
I supposed the first thing to be done would be to cre- 
ate a naval fjrce, and also to build vessels of the 
foreign style to facilitate the foreign commerce. This 
new idea prompted me to pursue the study of naviga- 

" In a course of two years' hard work I finished my 
arithmetic, algebra, and geometry, and also acquired 
the rudiments of theoretical navigation ; but my study 
was sadly interrupted by severe measles. My illness 
was a very serious one, and utterly enfeebled me. I 
was obliged to stay away from my school nearly three 
months. While I was yet feeble I began to study 
algebra in a Dutch book, and got through with it 
before I found myself strong enough to go out of 
doors. But this apparent little gain caused me great 
loss. Weak eyes, headaches, and sleeplessness came 
upon me one after another, and I was obliged to give 
up my studies for some time. 


" In the winter of the same year I had the first op- 
portunity to take a voyage on a steamer to Tamashi- 
ma, a seaport a little beyond Okayama. The schooner 
belonged to the prince of Matsuyama, who was closely 
related to my prince. On that account he gave me a 
free passage. It took us a little over three months to 
come back to Yedo. I enjoyed it exceedingly, and 
was also benefited by staying away so far from my 
prince's square inclosure where I spent all my younger 
days, and where I supposed that the heavens were but 
a little square patch. It was my first experience in 
mingling with different people and seeing different 
places. Evidently the sphere of my mental horizon 
was much widened by that voyage. I visited, the city 
of Osaka, where I had my first opportunity to taste 
beef. Being filled by a fresh idea for freedom, I 
planned to get rid of my obligation to my prince by 
connecting myself with the Shogun's government. 
The way to secure it was to be employed by him as a 
navigator, but that plan was soon banished from my 
thought when I found out something of the life of 
those employed in the Shogun's navy. Their base 
and licentious life shocked me. I did not like to min- 
gle with them. So I found no way to sever myself 
from my prince. Still my strong desire to obtain 
freedom became a real incentive to disregard and dis- 
obey him. I refused his order decidedly when I was 
compelled to take up a musket and prepare myself to 
be his soldier. 

" The war-cloud was then becoming intensely thick 
in the country. My prince was obliged to stand up 
for the cause of the unfortunate Shogun against the 
rising imperial party. As for me, I had full sympathy 
with the latter party, and often wished to join them. 


Yet a tender cord which bound me to my parents and 
grandfather tied me also to their prince. This was to 
me another severe trial. I became extremely nervous 
and irritable, and I might have been utterly ruined if 
I had not found a consoling friend to rescue me from 
this trouble. He often invited me to his house to 
study Dutch with him, and as he was farther advanced 
in the study he was a great help to me. He lent me 
a number of books to read, and among them I found 
a Japanese translation of the story of Robinson Cru- 
soe. It created in me a desire to visit foreign lands. 
Being pleased with it, I showed it to my grand- 
father and urged him to read it. When he read it 
through, he gave me a solemn warning, saying, 
' Young man, don't read such a book ; I fear it will 
mislead you.' At that thne I received permission 
from my prince to go to a private school, and stayed 
there a part of the time when he did not require my 
service. Some tune afterwards my friend lent me a 
number of Chinese books. One of them was a his- 
torical geography of the United States written by the 
Rev. Dr. Bridgman of the North China mission. An- 
other was a brief History of the world written by an 
English missionary in China. Another was Dr. Wil- 
liamson's little magazine ; and what excited most 
my curiosity were a few Christian books, published 
either at Shanghai or Hongkong. I read them with 
close attention. I was partly a skeptic, and partly 
struck with reverential awe. I became acquainted 
with the name of the Creator through those Dutch 
books I studied before, but it never came home so dear 
to my heart as when I read the simple story of God's 
creation of the universe on those pages of a brief 
Chinese Bible History. I found out that the world 


we live upon was created by his unseen hand, and not 
by a mere chance. I discovered in the same History 
his other name was the 'Heavenly Father,' which 
created in me more reverence towards Him, because I 
thought He was more to me than a mere Creator of 
the world. All these books helped me to behold a 
being somewhat dimly yet in my mental eye, who was 
so blindly concealed from me during the first two 
decades of my life. 

" Not being able to see any foreign missionaries 
then, I could not obtain any explanations on many 
points, and I wished at once to visit a land where the 
gospel is freely taught, and from whence teachers of 
God's words were sent out. Having recognized God 
as my Heavenly Father, I felt I was no longer in- 
separably bound to my parents. I discovered for the 
first time that the doctrines of Confucius on the filial 
relation were too narrow and fallacious. I said then : 
4 1 am no more my parents', but my God's.' A strong 
cord which had held me strongly to my father's home 
was broken asunder at that moment. I felt then 
that I must take my own course. I must serve my 
Heavenly Father more than my earthly parents. This 
new idea gave me courage to make a decision to for- 
sake my prince, and also to leave my home and my 
country temporarily. 

44 While I was walking on the streets of Yedo one 
morning, I met quite unexpectedly a friend whose ac- 
quaintance I formed during my voyage to Tamashima. 
He informed me that the prince's schooner was go- 
ing to leave Yedo for Hakodate within three days. 
Knowing that I was still interested in navigation, he 
asked me whether I would take a short voyage to 
Hakodate with her. Possibly it was a mere compli- 


mentary question on his part, but to me it was a question 
of no small interest. He went off on his way quickly, 
and I my own, without saying anything definite on 
the subject. But soon after the separation a thought 
flashed on me like lightning, that I must not miss this 
opportunity for going to Hakodate, and from thence 
attempt an escape to a foreign land. Then the ques- 
tion was how to avail myself of this opportunity. I 
knew almost too well that my prince would not give 
me permission to go so far as Hakodate. I thought 
then the most feasible way to execute my object would 
be to secure the favor of the Prince Matsuyama, the 
owner of the schooner, before I said anything either 
to my prince or to my parents. Without coming 
home I went directly to a confidential counselor of 
the prince to ask him to secure the prince's favor for 
me, to give me a free passage to Hakodate in his ves- 
sel. He was much pleased to see me, as I was previ- 
ously acquainted with him, and presented the case at 
once to his prince in my behalf. The matter was ar- 
ranged with the prince that he should hire me to be 
employed in his vessel on her passage to Hakodate, 
and should ask my prince's leave that I might go. 
The prince complied with all my requests with great 
pleasure, and sent a messenger to my prince to ob- 
tain leave for me from his service. The messenger 
was particularly instructed by him to obtain a favor- 
able reply without the least delay. Of course my 
prince could not refuse this special request of Prince 
Matsuyama, and gave a favorable answer to the mes- 
senger at once. This settled my case fairly, and no 
one could prevent my departure for Hakodate. 

" When the news reached my father he was utterly 
confounded ; and although he was quite unwilling to 


let me go, he could not change the order of the 
prince. It surprised every one of my neighbors and 
acquaintances. There was no time to be lost for my 
preparation ; but, through the great diligence of my 
mother and my sisters, I was quite well equipped to 
start at once. Two days after the matter was decided 
that I must depart from home, my grandfather pro- 
vided a generous dinner, and invited our neighbors 
and friends to partake of it with us. When we were 
all seated in a circle in our parlor, having one of 
those low dinner - tables before each one, and were 
ready to commence eating, he passed around a cup of 
cold water for us to sip from, after the manner of our 
solemn departing ceremony, generally performed when 
we expect no fair chance of seeing each other again. 
What a trying hour it was to my inexperienced heart ! 
for every one who was present wept, and none raised 
up their faces except myself and my grandfather. 
He skillfully concealed his tears and appeared un- 
usually cheerful ; and I kept myself very brave. 
When the dinner was over my grandfather said to 
me : ' My dear child, your future will be like seeking 
a pleasure on a mountain of full blossoms. Go your 
way without a least fear.' This unexpected parting 
from his lips gave me a full courage to start from 
home like a man. Then I bowed to him, to my par- 
ents, my sisters, and all who were invited there, and 
left my dear home which I did not expect to see 
again before I should see the wide world. 

" My younger brother followed me on the street 
of Yedo to a considerable distance. When I looked 
back to speak to him I found him sadly weeping. 
Then said I : ' Why do you weep, my brother ? You 
are like a girl. You had better go home from here.* 


So I sent him back, giving him my parting instruc- 
tion to be ever diligent in his study. (This was my 
last sight of my brother. He died in the year 1871, 
three years before I returned to my home.) Early 
the following morning we sailed out of Yedo bay, 
leaving that great city beyond the horizon, glancing 
now and then at the snow-capped, beautiful Fusiyama 
in the distance. We stopped here and there on the 
way to Hakodate for the merchandise of the prince. 
At the entrance of our harbor we might have ex- 
perienced a sad shipwreck, being helplessly carried 
by the strong tide against a reef, if we had not re- 
ceived kindly help from the shore to tow us out of 
danger. It was in the early part of the spring of 
1864 when we left Yedo, and within a month we 
reached Hakodate in safety. Here I was planning to 
get access to some foreigners, that through their favor 
I might attempt an escape. Through a friend of 
mine I was introduced to Pere Nicholi, a Russian 
priest, to be his teacher of the Japanese language, 
so that through his influence I might attain my ob- 

" Being far away from home, I became more care- 
ful in my observations ; what struck me most was the 
corrupt condition of the people. I thought then, a 
mere material progress will prove itself useless so 
long as their morals are in such a deplorable state. 
Japan needs a moral reformation more than mere 
material progress, and my purpose was more strength- 
ened to visit a foreign land. 

"After my being with the Russian priest nearly 
a month at his house, I gradually introduced to him 
my secret object, and asked his assistance to carry 
it out. I told him then what Japan needs most is 


moral reformation, and so far as I am convinced the 
reformation must be brought through Christianity. 
He was much pleased with my talk, but warned me 
against such a project as I had revealed to him. He 
urged me to stay with him, and told me he would be 
glad to give me lessons on the Bible as well as in 
English. Being discouraged with his warning, I began 
to seek some friends in the foreign concession. The 
very first friend I found there was a Japanese clerk 
employed by an English merchant, who showed me a 
strangely kind attention at a brief interview. I liked 
him very much and asked him the favor to be received 
at his office quite often. He told me he would wel- 
come me at any time when he was free from business, 
and, furthermore, he agreed to teach me English. But 
after a few interviews with him I revealed to him my 
long-cherished plan. He was much pleased with it 
and promised me he would keep it in mind. Having 
an intense desire to carry out my project, I assumed 
the costume of the common citizen, and tried to keep 
myself unnoticed when I went out on the street at 
Hakodate. I laid aside my long sword, which was 
then regarded as a mark of the samurai class. I 
also dressed my hair more simply. It was not more 
than a week after my confidential conversation with 
him, when he told me I might equip myself at once 
for leaving the country. An American captain had 
given him a consent to take me as far as China. It 
was his plan that, if I got away as far as China, there 
might be a better opportunity for me to find a pas- 
sage to the United States. How glad I was then 
when I was informed of this fair chance of my seek 
ing something in an unknown land beyond the sea! 
" Just at that time Pere Nicholi was absent from 


his house for his summer vacation, and had left it 
entirely to my charge. Having stayed there nearly 
two months, I had formed a number of acquaintances, 
some of whom were high officers of the local govern- 
ment, but to only a few of them did I reveal my 
plans. When I was almost ready to embark in an 
American vessel, I made a pretense of being called 
back to my home, lest my sudden disappearance from 
Hakodate might rouse suspicion in some of the officers 
that I was to take refuge in a foreign vessel, and 
a government ship would be sent to chase after me. 
At this time any one attempting to leave the country 
without permission of the government, if retaken, suf- 
fered death penalty. 

" While I was making a hasty preparation I found 
a little spare hour to get my photograph taken by a 
Russian artist, to be sent to my parents with my fare- 
well letter. Thereby I gave them notice of my de- 
parture for a far-off land, having America in view. 1 

" At the appointed hour I called on my Japanese 
friend at the foreign concession, who agreed to take 
me over to the American vessel, which was ready to 
sail on the following morning for Shanghai. He was 
there waiting for me, and gave me a warm welcome. 
He made some hot lemonade for us to drink before 
we started together on that midnight adventure, and 
told me I must not be nervous about my hazardous 
risk. But to my remembrance I was not nervous at all. 
Before I reached his place I heard a dog barking in 
the distance, and perceived at once that my Japanese 

1 This letter was not delivered, lest the friend to whose care it was 
committed, and the father also, might be subjected to severe punish- 
ment by the government ; and three years elapsed before the father 
f Neesima heard from his son. 


shoes attracted the attention of the animal ; so I took 
them off on the spot, in order to detect how far or in 
what direction that barking creature might be. When 
I told my friend where I had left my shoes, he rushed 
out in his bare feet and brought them back to me. 
Then we went down together to a wharf where he had 
ready a small boat. While we were standing on the 
wharf we heard somebody coming, so I hurried to the 
boat and laid flat down on the bottom, to make an ap- 
pearance that I was one of the bundles that contained 
a few articles of my own. It proved to be a watch- 
man, and the chance was he would catch both of us. 
But, providentially, he was a coward, and dared not 
approach close enough to detect us. He only saw 
my friend on the wharf about to untie the boat, and 
asked him in a trembling voice, ' Who is here ? ' 'It 
is I,' replied my friend calmly, and said further that 
he had necessary business with the captain of an 
American vessel which could not be delayed until to- 
morrow. My friend was well known to the watchman, 
who recognized him at once, and his brief explana- 
tion, spoken in such a quiet and confidential manner, 
was quite enough to be a passport to let him off from 
the wharf even in a midnight hour. As we rowed 
away we saw the thousands of lights on the shore. 
The people were celebrating a festival of one of their 
heathen gods. As the American vessel was lying 
quite far from the shore, it required in us considerable 
effort to reach it. The captain was waiting for us, 
and we were taken on board the Berlin without the 
least delay. Giving me a warm grip of hand, my 
friend bade me farewell and rowed to the shore alone, 
and I was taken to a store-room of the cabin and 
locked up. I went to sleep at once, and had a splen- 


did night, being aroused by the brisk steps of sailors 
overhead in the morning. I heard also some Jap- 
anese talking with the captain in the cabin, custom- 
house officers, come on board to examine the vessel 
before she left the harbor. It was useless for me to 
rise, because I was locked up in my room ; so I re- 
mained quietly waiting for the captain's summons. 

" At that moment all the past events of my life came 
to my recollection. What troubled me most was my 
filial affection to my parents and grandfather, so touch- 
ingly roused up then. However, it was too late for 
me to look back, and I was glad for my success so far. 
It was no small undertaking for me to start a new life 
who had no experience in hardships, and to launch 
myself into the almost boundless ocean to seek some- 
thing to satisfy my unquenchable appetite. What 
kept up my courage was an idea that the unseen hand 
would not fail to guide me. I had also an idea of 
risking my life for a new adventure, and said within 
myself : if t fail in my attempt altogether, it may be 
no least loss for my country ; but if I am permitted 
to come home after my long exile to yet unknown 
lands, I may render some service to my dear country. 

" Toward noon the captain unlocked my door and 
called me up on deck. Then the vessel was quite far 
off from the harbor, and that beautiful city Hakodate 
was almost sunk beyond the horizon. We were sail- 
ing along the coast, and the blue mountains were more 
or less within our sight for twelve days. When we 
came to leave the blue peaks of those mountain islands 
beyond the expansive horizon, I climbed up into the 
rigging to catch their last sight. I felt then some- 
what sensitive, but some thoughts of the future gave 
me fresh courage, and I looked forward to China in- 


stead of looking homeward. Three days after I lost 
sight of our mountain island our vessel was towed up 
to Shanghai by a small tugboat. 

" Here I must mention my experience on the voy- 
age. As I was unable to pay my passage, I agreed 
with the captain to work for it. So I commenced my 
service in the cabin. Alas I I could not speak a single 
word in English. So the captain was kind enough to 
teach me the names of the objects found in the cabin. 
It was a regular object lesson. He pointed out an ob- 
ject, speaking its name distinctly that I might catch 
it. There was one passenger on board. I know not 
whether he was an American or an Englishman. He 
also taught me English. Sometimes he treated me 
very kindly, and sometimes very roughly. I was once 
beaten by him because I did not understand what he 
ordered me to do. Then I was terribly enraged, and 
rushed down to my room for my Japanese sword to 
revenge myself. When I caught my sword and was 
about to dash out of the room, a thought came to me 
at once that I must take a serious consideration before 
I should take such an action. So I sat down on my 
bed and said within myself: This may be a mere 
trifling matter ; I may possibly meet still harder trials 
hereafter. If I cannot bear this now, how can I ex- 
pect to meet a serious one ? I felt quite ashamed of 
my impatience, and resolved that I should never resort 
to my sword for any causes. 

" Another event took place on the voyage to China. 
When I had emptied a dish tub, after washing dishes, 
I carelessly threw a tablespoon overboard. The Chi- 
nese steward frightened me by saying, ' The captain 
will beat you.' I thought it might be a costly silver 
spoon. Then I took out all the Japanese money I 


had, went to the cabin, and confessed to the captain 
by making motions with my hands and shoulders, beg- 
ging him to take the money for the lost spoon. To 
my great surprise he smiled at me and refused to take 
it from me. And here I must not fail to mention the 
name of the captain who so kindly offered to take me 
to China at the risk of losing his vessel, viz. : Captain 
William T. Savory, a citizen of Salem, Mass. At 
Shanghai I was transferred to another American ship 
called Wild Rover, commanded by Captain Horace S. 
Taylor, a native of Chatham, Mass. As Captain Sa- 
vory was obliged to go back to Japan in the same 
vessel, he requested Captain Taylor to take charge 
of me. 

" A few days after I came to the ship Wild Rover 
I presented my long sword to the captain, requesting 
him to take me to the United States, and I agreed to 
work out my passage without pay. So I began to 
work in his cabin. Not being able to call me by my 
Japanese name, the captain gave me a ' new name,' 
Joe. Hence my American parents called me Joseph. 
The ship remained in Shanghai until the first part of 
September, then sailed to Foochoo for lumber, to be 
brought to the former port again. Then she went to 
Hongkong, and from there to Saigon, where she took 
a cargo of rice for Hongkong. While there I wanted 
to buy a copy of the Chinese New Testament, but 
found that my Japanese money would not pass there. 
So I requested the captain to buy my small sword for 
eight dollars. Some time after I obtained that money, 
the captain gave me permission to go on shore with 
the Chinese steward to get a sight of the city. Then 
I had a fine chance to purchase a copy of the New 
Testament in a Chinese bookstore. Soon after the 


ship unloaded she sailed for Manilla to get a full 
cargo of hemp for the homeward voyage. When we 
were ready to sail out from the harbor of Manilla 
there was a report that an English steamer was lying 
in wait for American vessels at the entrance of the 
harbor. We had no idea that the civil war in the 
United States was over then, and the captain feared 
that English boat might do some mischief to the ship. 
He busied himself on deck with his spyglass, and the 
mates were hurrying down to the magazine to take 
out powder and balls to be used for self-defense. How- 
ever, we sailed forward towards the suspicious ship 
and passed her without the least disturbance. It was 
the first of April, 1865, when we left Manilla, and it 
took us just four months to reach Boston. We did 
not stop on the way, as we had plenty of provisions 
and water. 

" During the voyage my business was to wait upon 
the captain at his meals, to keep the cabin in order, 
etc. I often pulled ropes when I was free from the 
captain's service. The most enjoyable part of the 
voyage was my daily calculation of the ship's position 
with the captain. He was extremely kind to me, and 
treated me as if I were one of his own brothers. He 
never spoke any cross words to me. Every one on 
board treated me pleasantly. I often wished to go to 
the forecastle to see the sailors, but I was not allowed 
to do so. The captain warned me to keep far from 
them. We enjoyed fine weather and fair winds 
throughout the voyage, with the exception of one or 
two rough storms. When just off the Cape of Good 
Hope we saw a waterspout ; it was the finest sight I 
ever saw. Then we caught the trade winds, and sailed 
daily thirteen miles an hour on an average. 


" When we came near Cape Cod we were informed 
by a fisherman that the civil war was ended, and Pres- 
ident Lincoln assassinated. As we slowly entered the 
harbor of Boston, and saw the beautiful, busy city, 
with the gilt dome within a short distance, the captain 
ordered the crew to let go the anchor. Down it went, 
and all on board rejoiced that the voyage was ended. 

" But to me it was more than mere rejoicing, for I 
found soon afterward that the end of the voyage was 
going to be my happy destiny. Through the kindness 
of the captain I was introduced to the owner of the 
ship and his wife. They became at once my fostering 
parents, in the land of my adoption, through whose 
untiring care, wise guidance, and constant prayers, I 
was permitted to realize some dreams I used to dream 
at home so often and so vaguely in my younger days." 

To these " younger days " Neesima often referred 
in his journals of later years. Of his mother he 
says : 

" She was a very kind-hearted woman, always ready 
to help her neighbors along, though she found so 
much to do in her own family. . . . One day she was 
sick in bed. I was very anxious for her, and wished 
to procure some remedy, though she had something 
from the doctor. So I went to the temple and prayed 
to the god that he would cure my mother. I bought 
a little bit of cake, which was a portion of the morn- 
ing offering, and gave it to her for a remedy, hoping 
earnestly that it might do some good to her. I knew 
not, indeed, whether nature cured her, or whether her 
will or faith in the god made her whole, but she be- 
came better soon after she received that cake. She 
truly believed that the god had granted my earnest 
request for her and restored her health so soon. I 


had done the same thing for my neighbors, and was 
often successful in curing them." 

Of his grandfather, for whom he entertained the 
warmest love, he says : 

" He performed his duty faithfully as steward for 
forty years. He often entreated the prince to dismiss 
him from office because, being well stricken with 
years, he found its duties rather tedious. After sev- 
eral entreaties he was permitted to retire with honor 
and a pension, when seventy-eight years of age, just 
one year before my leaving home. He took especial 
pains to instruct me, and in the evening took me on 
his lap and told me stories of heroes and good men 
who lived long ago. He instructed me to obey my 
parents, to be kind to my friends, to keep my tongue 
quiet, to be humble, not to steal, nor lie, nor flatter. He 
loved me very deeply, very intensely, and very affec- 
tionately. Oh, I could not forget what he did for me." 

Of himself he writes : 

" I was obedient to my parents, and, as they early 
taught me to do, served gods made by hand with great 
reverence. I strictly observed the days of my an- 
cestors and departed friends, and went to the grave- 
yards to worship their spirits. I often rose up early 
in the morning, went to a temple which was at least 
three and a half miles from home, where I worshiped 
the gods, and returned promptly, reaching home be- 
fore breakfast. I did that not only because I ex- 
pected some blessing from the god, but that I might 
receive praise from my parents and neighbors. . . . 
When Commodore Perry came to Yedo Bay and 
forced us to open the port to the American people, we 
desired very strongly to expel him from the coast, 
though we had not any means to do so. We had 


been sleeping in peace over three hundred years, and 
had reached the lowest degree of effeminacy. Our 
swords began to rust in their sheaths. We sent them 
to the factories to be repaired for use. Gunsmiths 
who had been poor for so long for want of business 
suddenly began to clothe themselves in soft garments, 
while theatre men, who lived by the mercy of the 
fashionable people, were deprived of their luxury. 
Every one who had the privilege of wearing swords 
began to devote himself to sword exercise, drilling, and 
horse riding. Although I was then quite young, yet I 
desired to be a brave soldier, or a man of honor, like 
those whom I found so often in our ancient history. I 
frequently went to the temple of the god of war, prayed 
sincerely that he should give me strength, and often 
performed very foolish ceremonies for his service. 
Once, when I was reading a life of a Chinese hero, I 
came across a famous phrase which he proclaimed 
when he quitted the sword-exercise : ' A sword is only 
designed to slay a single man, but I am going to learn 
to kill ten thousand enemies.' That is, he was inclin- 
ing to study some work of stratagem. Though I was 
not able to measure my own quality, yet I desired to 
follow his example, and wished to kill many thousands 
of enemies, not by a sword, but by stratagem. This 
thought helped me to quit sword-exercise and to confine 
myself entirely to study. I studied very diligently, 
and often went to bed after cock-crow. I hated the 
western nations because they were foreigners, and dis- 
liked at first to study the language, which seemed to me 
so curious and strange. My prince was vety kind to 
me . . . but providence did not spare his life. He 
died by a disease of the throat when I was sixteen 
years of age. It caused me a great sorrow, and de- 


stroyed entirely my dawning hope to study. When 
his younger brother took his place, he changed most 
everything which his departed brother had established. 
The school was entirely neglected, and many scholars 
left it because the prince expressed his hatred towards 
them instead of encouraging them. He chose the 
most ignorant and foolish persons among his people 
for his cup-bearers, and discharged all the best men 
whom his brother had employed. He appointed me 
an assistant of his secretary, and kept me busy like a 
slave. Besides the secretaryship on one hand, I had 
forty or fifty little pupils on the other, and could 
scarcely find a time to study Chinese. It was a very 
trying work indeed to teach such young playful pu- 
pils. When I treated them too gently they began to 
think I was too easy, and did not study very hard ; 
and when I whipped them they became more obsti- 
nate, and some of them kept crying a long while and 
did not study at all. I was very much disgusted in 
teaching them, because my heart was not in it, but on 
study. I frequently thought that I should run away 
from home and go to a place where I might further 
my knowledge. I could not keep down my rambling 
thoughts, and often desired to perform that plan." 

Neesima's diary prior to his arrival in Boston, and 
the notebooks written while pursuing his studies at 
home, are exceedingly interesting. On the long voy- 
age from Hakodate to Boston he filled several books 
with his attempts at English composition. Everything 
was new to this boy, whose world had hitherto been the 
" square inclosure " of his prince. Every mechanical 
contrivance about the ship, the capstan, force pump, 
pulley tackle, steering gear, etc., was accurately delin- 
eated in perspective, and to these drawings was added 


a detailed explanation of the principles involved and 
the uses subserved. Under the picture of a windlass 
occurs the first sentence in English : " I will write the 
figure of everything in this ship if my eyes does get 
better." The Japanese junk in which he made the 
voyage to Takashima, and afterwards to Hakodate, 
touched at several ports along the coast, either for 
trading purposes, to make surveys, or to seek shelter. 
His journal describes these ports minutely, and con- 
tains maps of their harbors, the names of their gov- 
ernors, the condition of the castle defenses, a his- 
tory of the outlying provinces, with statistics of their 
products, exports, taxes, and population, as also his 
own personal observations on the moral condition of 
the people. He keenly regrets the prevalence of 
drunkenness and prostitution, and the conviction that 
no merely material progress would be sufficient to 
secure his country's prosperity sharpens his hunger 
for Christianity. At Hakodate he went daily to the 
Russian hospital for the treatment of his eyes, and 
records his surprise on finding that the poor were 
received and cared for without money and without 

It appears from his own statement that he was, 
from a Japanese point of view, well educated. His 
knowledge of the Chinese classics was extensive ; he 
was an expert penman and a natural artist. Before 
leaving Hakodate he had mastered in Dutch the ele- 
ments of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, and naviga- 
tion, and acquired the rudiments of physics and 
astronomy. His notebooks on the former subjects are 
almost treatises. He rewrites in his own language 
every demonstration, and solves innumerable problems 
and exercises. At every page one is impressed by 


the earnestness and persistence with which this young 
mind pursues its quest of truth and knowledge in 
spite of ridicule, blows, and bodily infirmity. Here, 
too, is the record of the struggle with parental obedi- 
ence, of the fears of failure and disgrace. From 
every easy avenue open to ambition and advancement 
he turned aside. From the strong influences of the 
religious and social systems in which he had been 
reared he broke away, because they failed to satisfy 
him. His eye was fixed upon no narrow horizon of 
personal advantage. With a far-sightedness which is 
marvelous in one so young and inexperienced, he dis- 
cerned dimly the true source of future good for his 
native land, and following steadfastly the light of that 
conviction went steadily on his own way, the true pa- 
triot, braving the death which would have been the 
only welcome home in the event of failure. 



HAVING decided, not without some hesitation, to 
undertake Neesima's education, Mr. and Mrs. Hardy 
accompanied him to Andover, Mass., late in Septem- 
ber, 1865. Plans for his future study were necessa- 
rily vague, but the mastery of English was clearly in- 
dispensable to all progress, and he was therefore placed 
in the English department of Phillips Academy. 
Fearing that as a foreigner he might be subjected to 
annoyance, Mr. Hardy consulted Dr. Samuel H. Tay- 
lor, the principal of the academy, with reference to his 
location in some private family, and was recommended 
to Mr. and Miss Hidden, who lived in a pleasant 
house on a small farm in the outskirts of the village. 
Mr. Hardy called at once upon Miss Hidden, who re- 
ceived his proposition with surprise. Her brother was 
in delicate health, they lived quietly without servants, 
had never taken boarders, and could not for a mo- 
ment entertain the idea of receiving a Japanese unac- 
customed to American ways of living and unable to 
speak the English language. Neesima's manuscript 
account of the circumstances under which he left 
Japan was, however, left with Miss Hidden. As be- 
fore, this simple narrative opened the hearts of its 
readers, and on the following day Mr. Hardy was 
notified that the Hiddens would receive Keesima. 
One half of their large house was occupied by Mr. 


Ephraim Flint, Jr., then completing his theological 
course in the seminary. Both Mr. Flint and his wife 
took the greatest interest in the young stranger, and 
gave much of their time to his instruction. This in- 
terest developed into a warm friendship, and in later 
years Neesima often visited Mr. Flint at Hinsdale, 
Mass., where he was settled, and where he died, 
much mourned and beloved. 

Neesima remained in Andover until the fall of 
1867, when he was sent to Amherst to take such stud- 
ies as would best fit him for his future work. His 
time at Andover was devoted to English, natural sci- 
ence, and mathematics, and, on leaving the academy, 
Dr. Taylor writes of him : " What he has done he has 
done well." His eyes were not strong, and he was at 
this time under the care of a Boston oculist. Any 
bodily weakness alarmed him, and the struggle be- 
tween the desire to improve his opportunities and the 
fear of jeopardizing by overwork his "great aim" is 
often recorded in his journal. 

On the flyleaf of this journal he writes, on reaching 
Andover, the verse which of all others occurs most 
frequently in his private papers: "For God so loved 
the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that 
whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but 
have everlasting life." "This verse," he said in later 
years, "is the sun among all the stars which shine 
upon the pages of God's holy word;" and the vital 
principle of religion was ever for him the conviction 
of the love of God for man. On the opposite page of 
the journal is found this prayer : 

" O Lord, Thou picked out me from darkness, for- 
saking my parents whom I did love, and bringeth me 
here, passing boundless ocean very safely, no hurri- 


cane, no tempest, but always fair wind. O Lord, 
Thou let me acknowledge thy holy Word every day, 
and maketh me warm bed to lie down in, and prepar- 
eth me nice table to eat enough. O Lord, no man 
can do such goodness and mercy for me but Thou only. 
O Lord, wash away my sins, take up my evil heart 
and give me right spirit to understand and remember 
thy holy Word; and let my eyes and ears be good to 
see and hear thy holy Word more and more. O God, 
wilt Thou help me to destroy many gods and idols? 
Please destroy them with thy power and let me be 
comforted. O Lord, I will never keep thy name in 
vain, and I will try to obey thy commandments as I 
can. I ask Thee for my helpers, teachers, parents, 
and all brethren; keep out from them illness and 
temptation. For thine is power and glory and king- 
dom forever. Amen." 


ANDOVEK, January 2, 1866. 

At my brother's request I reply to your note, which 
was received in due time. Joseph was glad to get 
some word from you, and has rather been looking for 
you since the week after the term closed, not feeling 
certain what disposition was to be made of him. I 
gathered from what you said that his entering school 
here was somewhat of an experiment. You doubtless 
have been apprised of his efficiency through Dr. Tay- 
lor, but he has another teacher to whom he recites 
every evening, and who speaks of him as going ahead 
very fast. This is the gentleman who lives in the 
other part of the house. Both he and his wife have, 
from the first, taken great interest in this young Jap- 
anese, and seem to consider him a door of usefulness 


opened them in their at present somewhat private life ; 
and really the benefit he derives from Mr. Flint is far 
greater than from the teacher in the academy, though 
he needs contact with school life. We find Joseph 
a gentleman, and it is to our shame as a Christian 
community that we are not more in advance of this 
"heathen brought to our own door," as one has said. 

When, by his own artless conversation we are led 
to see how he has resisted temptations thrown in his 
way, and shown himself an example of good report, we 
are led to feel that the hand of God is upon him, and 
that he may yet become a chosen vessel in the redemp- 
tion of his people from darkness and idolatry to the 
glorious Gospel of the Blessed God. 

He has been very busy through the vacation with 
his studies. We can hardly avoid giving him consid- 
erable attention, as something needs to be explained 
or corrected very often. He is very grateful for any 
favors shown him, and is ready to do any in return. 
He is very skillful with his China-brush, and I have 
suggested to him to send to you a specimen of his 
drawing. . . . He has a profound sense of gratitude 
for what you are doing for him, and seems only to 
wish to be comfortable. His aim appears to be the 
good of his people, and his health he feels to be an 
important consideration. 

I have no fancy or desire to take boarders, and 
should not in this instance except for the peculiar cir- 
cumstances. We have made him a regular member 
of the family ; he sits with us all the time and shares 
all the privileges of the family. It is not often that 
we find one who can be received in this way without 
a feeling of intrusion, but he is an exception. 



ANDOVEK, January 1, 1866. 

I am very well and had a most comfortable New 
Year. O, I may say I never had such a comfortable 
New Year in my life, because I had enough of all 
things that I wanted without any trouble and labor. 
O dear Sir, I feel your kindness and goodness from 
the top of my head to the extreme of my feet, and I 
wish you to know that since I came here how happy I 
am, and how successful as follows : 

In the school I had recitations in arithmetic from 
decimal fractions until duodecimal, and I heard many 
scholars read or spell in English. O dear Sir, it seems 
to me I have found a kind and godly neighbor called 
Mr. Flint, who lives in Mr. Hidden's house. He 
teaches me every evening the arithmetic, and I have 
recited to him through reduction, signs, definitions, 
vulgar fractions, decimal fractions, addition, subtrac- 
tion, multiplication, division, interest, and compound 
interest, until commission. A few days ago he gave 
me a small geography, and hears me recite about it; 
and lets me write some compositions, and corrects 
them for me ; and Mrs. Flint explains to me the New 
Testament every evening, too. I have memorized 
Beatitudes, Lord's Prayer, golden rule, 22nd Chap. 
Math. 37th verse, 3d chap. St. John 16th verse, 1st 
and 23d Psalms, and Ten Commandments, and I have 
read in the New Testament until the 17th Chap. Luke ; 
and I have read out from the Old Testament the es- 
cape of Israelites from Egypt ; their stay in a wilder- 
ness, eating and dressing by God's miracle; Moses' 
death; Daniel in the lion's den; three wise men in 
the strongest fire; the strongest man Samson; the 


miracle for a widow and Naaman in the time of Eli- 
jah ; and I have stopped in his room every evening to 
recite out these things. 

Mr. Hidden and his sister take care about me very 
kindly, and I feel very comfortable, as if I had been 
in my father's home. I think all these things belong 
to the providence or mercy of God, and I must glorify, 
love, and obey Him. I hope and believe too He will 
bless you and your whole family. I would like to see 
you sometime. 


ANDOVEB, January 20, 1866. 

I am very well through God's mercy and your 
care. Dear Sir, I am not able how to explain my 
great thankfulness to you, but in my mind only. 
When I rest from my study I always remember God's 
mercy and your care, and give thanks to Him, and 
pray to Him for you, "Bless him who helps the poor 
for thy name's sake." Please tell me when your 
friend will go out from Boston to Yokohama. I hope 
to send letters to my father and my friend who lives 
in Hakodate to let them know of my present suc- 
cess. . . . 


ANDOVER, February 23, 1866. 

I am very well through God's mercy since I com- 
menced my hazardous adventure. When I called on 
Him who made heaven and earth and sea and all that 
in them is, my sorrow turned into joy and my misery 
changed to success. Oh, I may surely say that it is 
very wonderful and marvelous that such success has 


fallen on me. I passed through many thousand miles 
of water very safely, without hurricane, tempest, or 
any trouble. Also, a kind and religious man . . . 
hears me recite in arithmetic . . . and his wife ex- 
plains to me the most holy and valuable book in the 
world, entitled the New Testament, and tells about 
one Saviour Jesus Christ, who was sent down from his 
father to enlighten the darkness and save sinners. In 
the Academy I am studying reading, spelling, English 
grammar, and arithmetic; also, I have a Bible lesson 
every Sabbath. All the teachers and scholars, and 
many who know about me, are interested in me and 
love me, and some give me. things to please me. But 
these things they don't do for my sake, but for the 
Lord Jesus Christ. O dear friend, think you well 
who is Christ; the same is the light that shines in 
darkness. It is not the light that comes out from tho 
sun, moon, stars, and candles ; but this the true light 
that shines on the benighted and wicked world, and 
guides us unto the way of salvation. The light of 
candle is blown away, but this is the true light of 
eternal life and we can in no wise blow it out. And 
we may take this light through Jesus Christ. "For 
God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten 
Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not per- 
ish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his 
son into the world to condemn the world, but that the 
world through him might believe." See John, 3d 
ctapt. 16-17 verses, New Testament. 

O dear friend, I have nothing to repay your kind- 
ness, but will send only "study the Bible," and my 
photograph. Please care for your health and study 
the book I have mentioned above. O alas ! it is not 
the country's law to study the Bible and worship one 


tender and merciful Father who made us, loved us, 
and gave his only begotten Son through whom we may 
be saved. But the law ought to be broken because it 
is made by the Devil, the King of the world. The 
world was not made by the Devil, but by our true 
Father who gave unto us his true law. O friend, 
whether then is right to hearken unto the Devil more 
than unto God, please judge you. If the fierce Devil 
persecute you for righteousness' sake, don't trouble 
yourself. I am sure your God will protect you from 
evil, and though your body should be killed, your soul 
would be received unto Hun, and you would dwell in 
the brighter place with eternal life. I would like 
indeed to go there with you. 

Your truly friend, 



ANDOVKR, April 9, 1866. 

... I am very glad springtime has come and 
weather becomes warmer and pleasanter day by day, 
birds singing here and there, and grass becoming 
green on the wayside, fields, and hills. I hear farm- 
ers will sow seed in the ground pretty soon. I say 
myself, I must try to sow seed in my heart and mind, 
that I may bear fruit unto everlasting life. When I 
grow weary by study I take a walk for exercise. Now 
it is too warm to wear my overcoat, and the overcoat 
which you gave me for spring wear is very suitable for 
this season. I feel very happy for your charitable 
love. I have spent this vacation in reading, writing 
composition, drawing, and translating the Gospel of 
John in the Japanese language. Please accept these, 
in which I have written account of the Japanese reli- 


.gions, and care for your health, and give my regard 
to Mr. Hardy and your whole family. 


ANDOVER, July 24, 1866. 

So you (like the Samaritan) relieve me from the 
misery, and help me to get good education, therefore 
I will call you my neighbor. Nay, I will call you my 
mother whom God gives me. I pray to Him for you 
day and night that He may bless your family bounti- 
fully. He knows our hearts and desirer If we ask 
Him faithfully, He will answer us with best thing. . . . 
O, be cheerful to help me (a poor boy, like a wingless 
bird). Our Father which art in Heaven will rejoice 
your charitable deed, and will reward to you with the 
best thing. ... I am very glad I got through arith- 
metic in this term. I will take algebra and grammar 
in the next term. My eyes are not very well, but I 
expect they shall be strong if I stop my study little 
while and take much exercise in this vacation. This 
afternoon I must go to the exhibition of the Academy, 
therefore I 'have not much time to write many things 
to you. Please give my love to Mr. Hardy and tell 
him be very careful for this hot season. 


ANDOVER, September 10, 1866. 

. . . Mrs. Hidden's aunt, called Mrs. C , 

commenced to be weak from the last spring and grew 
worse and worse. Now she is in the point between 
life and death. In the evening of the last Sunday I 
went in her chamber and waited on her a little while. 
Though her mind turned aside, she seemed to me 
more quiet than any rest time. I told her: "Mrs. 


C , I pray to God for your blessing and I believe 

He will answer my prayer. Won't you pray to Him ? 
I think He will hear your prayer and bless you." 
Then she answered: "Joseph, I thank you for your 
kindness," bursting in tears; and she cried out quite 
loud, "O Lord, have compassion on me, and show me 
thy mercy through Jesus Christ." She cried twice in 
this manner. At that time Mrs. Hidden was down- 
stairs. She heard then this crying, and thought very 
strangely, and came up to her chamber door and asked 
me: "What matter is it?" I told her she made 
prayer. She said : " Does she make prayer ? I never 
heard her make prayer, nor noticed it in my life. I 
am very glad about it." Then she asked her: "Do 
you trust in Jesus?" She said: "Yes, live or die, I 
trust in Him." She is aged about three score and 
ten, but never said anything regard Jesus, nor made 
prayer ; but from my single question in that Sabbath 
evening she turned her heart unto Him who takes sins 
away from the world. ... I believe the Lord will 
hear her earnest prayer and guide her into everlasting 
habitation. . . . 


ANDOVER, October 27, 1866. 

... I am very well through the tender *are of 
God. I enjoy very much my studies in this term. 
My eyes are quite well, so that I can study during the 
day, and in the night, least one hour and half or two. 
In the beginning of this term I took Romans for my 
evening study, and read through it a week ago. Mr. 
Flint interested me very much and explained it for 
me. Now I am reading first Corinthians. Last 
Friday Capt. Taylor's wife wrote a letter to me, and 


told me he will sail to China again and he would like 
to see me before his voyage. Therefore I wanted to 
see him very much. But I thought within my heart 
that I must spend some money for going up and com- 
ing back. But in the Saturday morning Mrs. Flint 
gave me a ticket, and Mr. Hidden presented to me 
one dollar bill to spend it in Boston. After our morn- 
ing prayers in the Academy I went to Boston . . . 
then I went to Charlestown to see Capt. Taylor. He 
was there on board the ship and seemed very glad to 
see me. Forenoon I stayed there with him, and it 
was very pleasant to me to spend a few hours with my 
old acquaintance. Afterwards he took me to Boston 
to get dinner, gave me his thin overcoat which is very 
suitable for this season, and bought for me a very nice 
hat, though I did not tell him about it. After a quar- 
ter of five o'clock he came to the depot with me, 
bought a ticket for me, and said good-by, bursting in 
tears. O Mrs. Hardy, is it not wonderful that the 
providence of God has fallen on me, a poor Japanese, 
so much? 

Last Monday M told me my trunk had come. 

Mrs. Hardy ! when I opened the trunk I said within 
my heart: "What shall I do to you?" because 
you give me so many things as your own boy. Not 
these things only, but my education, hoping that I 
might do great good to my native land. I think, 
though you help me so much, you hope no reward 
from me, because you know I am poor. Therefore I 
may say surely that your heavenly reward shall be 
increased. Please remember the words of the Lord 
Jesus how He said: "It is more blessed to give than 

to receive." . . . Last Monday evening Mrs. C 

died. I think she is sitting now by the right hand of 


Jesus. A few weeks ago Mrs. Shedd asked to you 
about my joining the Seminary Church, and she wrote 
to Mrs. Flint that you are approved of it. If you 
and Mr. Hardy approve it, I shall join it the next 
communion. Now I believe Jesus Christ is the Son 
of God who died for our sins, and we shall be saved 
through Him. I love Jesus more than anything else. 
I cast whole self to Him and try to do right before 
His sight. This is my vow. I will go back to Japan 
and persevere to turn the people to Jesus from Devil. 
I determined myself to Jesus so fast that nothing can 
separate my love from Him. But my flesh is weaker 
than my spirit, therefore I wish to join church and to 
unite in Christ, that I may grow more Christlike and 
I may do great good to my nation for his name's sake. 
If you approve it, please give me answer in the next 
week. Please care for yourself and give my love to 
Mr. Hardy and all your family. I would like to see 
you sometime. . . . 


ANDOVEB, December 25, 1866. 

It is the beautiful morning of Christmas. I feel 
very bright and happy, and I am thankful to Heav- 
enly Father for his remarkable care on me from the 
time of my landing on Boston till now, as you know 
yourself surely. . . . The communion of the church 
in the Seminary will be observed in the next Sunday. 
I shall join to it in that time and shall be baptized in 
the name of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Perhaps 
you will be very busy on the last day of this week, 
therefore I dare not say : " Please come up here and 
spend the next Sabbath with me. ;> But I should be 
very happy to have you and Mr. Hardy present at 
the communion season. 



ANDOVEK, May 18, 1867- 

Since I departed from you I wanted to write a few 
lines to ask how you are, but I was just as busy as 
bees with my studies. . . . After the class got through 
the study of natural philosophy they took botany for 
the remainder of the term. I hesitated to take it be- 
cause I thought I could not spend my time for flowers. 
My teacher was in favor of it and told me it was a 
very fine study, just as useful as natural philosophy; 
so I was obliged to take it, and borrowed his book, 
because it costs so much. I did not like to get it 
without considting you. It is very hard to remember 
names of flowers, but I enjoy very much, being en- 
couraged to it by that God would not forsake me, be- 
cause He cares for the minutest flower. I would like 
to have a book of my own. If you please, send your 
word by M and let me know if I may buy it or 
not. Also my teacher and Mr. Flint advised me to 
commence geometry. . . . The class in the Acad- 
emy was too far advanced for me to enter it, so Mr. 
Flint offered to hear me recite half an hour each 
day. ... I like to see the Japanese Commissionary, 
but I think better for me to hide myself from them, 
because I am runaway boy and the law-breaker of the 
government. . . . 


NOKTH CHATHAM, August 8, 1867. 

I left Andover on the 25th July to visit my 
friends who live in North Chatham. When I came to 
Boston I met showers many times, but I carried my 
trunk from the Maine depot to the Old Colony depot 


in the interval of many showers. ... I took my seat 
unfortunately in the back part of the car, not knowing 
future occurrences. When we came to Tremont the 
conductor called out the changing of the cars, but I 
was reading a book in which I was much interested, 
and the same time a pretty heavy shower passed us, so 
that I could not hear his calling. When I thought 
that I had come to an halfway place where I changed 
cars when I came to Chatham the last time, not know- 
ing the cars changed some time ago I asked a gentle- 
man how far is the place where I may change cars 
to go to Chatham. He said, "Chatham ! " much sur- 
prised, and told me "you have the wrong train now. 
You cannot go to Chatham to-night because this will 
go to New Bedford." I told the conductor about it 
and showed him my ticket to Chatham. He was a 
very good and kind man. He said : "You cannot help 
it now, and you must go to the next station, New 
Bedford; " and he said also he would not charge me 
at all. I came to Fair Haven about 7 o'clock p. M. 
Between it and New Bedford there lies a large river. 
I crossed it by a ferryboat and arrived at the city of 
New Bedford safely. 

I knew not anybody there at all, therefore I 
thought it would be a safe way to find the right kind 
of people. When I found a church I asked a gentle- 
man about its denomination and its minister's name. 
He answered me very kindly: "It is an Orthodox 

church, and the minister's name is Mr. C ." I 

asked him about his residence. He showed me his 
house very plainly. When I went to his house and 
rang the bell, a young lady came to the door. I 
asked her to see Rev. Mr. C a moment. She 
took me to the beautiful parlor and gave me a chair, 


saying she would call out Mr. C pretty soon, and 

she asked me my name. I told her my name very 
plainly, but she could not get hold of my last name 
hardly, and went away understanding only that my 

name is Joseph. After a while Mr. C came to 

the parlor and shook my hand. Then I told him : "I 
am a stranger. My name is Joseph Neesima. I left 
Boston this afternoon at four o'clock to go to Chat- 
ham, but I took the wrong train, not knowing the cars 
changed at the station of Tremont, and I arrived in 
this city unexpectedly. Be so kind as to direct me to 
a house where I may pass the night with the least ex- 
pense." He asked me: "Have you money enough to 
pay for your lodging?" I answered him: "Yes, Sir, 
I have, but I hope to pass the night with the least ex- 
pense, because I did not expect at all to come to this 
city to-night." He thought I was a poor traveler 
and gave half of a dollar saying : " This may help you 
to a half of your lodging." I did not take it from 
him, saying: "No, thank you, Sir, I do not wish to 
take this from you, but I hope you will direct me to 
a safe place." 

It was quite dark inside of his house, because it 
was a cloudy evening and it was after seven o'clock. 
He took me out of his house and told me he would 
take me to a Seaman's Home, because he thought I 
was a poor Spanish fishman, seeing my dark complex- 
ion and knowing that many Spanish people are com- 
ing in the city for the whale business. When I was 
in his house I could not distinguish his appearance 
hardly, but I saw him very well out of the door. He 
is about fifty-six or seven years of age, and his stature 
is about middle size. He has dark hairs, and some 
of them are turned to gray. His manner is very 


simple, yet his appearance is very graceful. He did 
not talk much, but spoke very distinctly and elo- 
quently. He asked me where I came from. I an- 
swered: "I came from Japan." "How long ago?" 
"About two years ago." "Where do you reside?" 
"I reside in Andover." Then he said he knew some 
people there. I asked him whom he knew there, and 

he said he knew Deacon A . I told him I knew 

him and I resided a very short distance from his house. 
He said he knew Prof. E. A. Park, and told me Prof. 
Park came to the city a few weeks ago to ordain some 
minister. He asked me what I did there. I an- 
swered: "I am a member of Phillips Academy." He 
asked me how I liked American customs. I "I 
like them better than our heathenish customs." He 
asked how I like the religion. "I like the true 
God better than gods of wood and stone." He asked 
how I came over to this country. I gave him a short 
account of my leaving Japan and how Providence 
guided me wonderfully to this enlightened country. 
Then he said he would take me to a different place 
from that which he mentioned before. He came with 
me to a large and beautiful Hotel called Parker 
House, which I supposed the best hotel of the city, 
and he paid also for my lodging. When I saw him 
take out money from his pocketbook, I took my money 
quickly and paid back to him. But he would not take 
it from me, saying : " When I go to your country and 
am a stranger, then please show me your kindness," 
and went away quickly, bidding me good-night. He 
wrote his name on a paper which I found in my pocket 
Rev. Wheelock Craig. I took a nice supper there 
and slept in a splendid room. . . . The next morning 
I took breakfast early. I came back to the same 


place where I missed the cars to the Cape, and arrived 
in Chatham little after 3 o'clock p. M., taking a coach 
seven miles from the centre of Harwich. I was re- 
ceived cordially by my old acquaintances here, and I 
was very glad to see them. Before I arrived at the 
city of New Bedford I prayed to the Lord that he 
would take care of me and guide me to a safe place. 
So he answered my prayers and guided me to such a 
kind and godly man to help to pass that night safely. 
Perhaps some people, who trust in their own wisdom 
and do not believe in the providence of God, would 
say that I was lucky at that time, not thinking of his 
providence at all. But I can say surely the Provi- 
dence guided me to a safe place, because I believe 
nothing can occur without the Providence of God. 


NORTH CHATHAM, August 26, 1867. 

... I was received by Capt. Taylor's father's 
family kindly and welcomely. They are all pleasant 
and social people and they treat me as their own fam- 
ily. I am thankful to God for his perpetual care to 
me. Though I had nothing with me when I left 
Japan, yet I do not suffer at all for the destitute of 
the daily necessity. He gave me you and others as 
friends to care me. Therefore I do prove this pre- 
cious verse: "Be strong and of good courage, be not 
afraid, neither be thou dismayed; for the Lord God 
is with thee whithersoever thou goest." When I read 
this verse my grateful feeling towards Him caused me 
many streams of tears. ... I do not read much this 
vacation, but I read the Book and a few pages of 
geography every day. I hope my eyes will grow 
strong enough to enter into new study in the next 


term. I love study dearly, so that I cannot leave it 
entirely. . . . Now we have quite number in the fam- 
ily. The sum of them is twelve. We went to the 
seashore yesterday and dug out one bushel of clams, 
and we shall go to woods to-morrow to get blackber- 
ries if it be fine weather. . . . Though I do not write 
to you very often, I do feel grateful for your kindness 
always, and mention you in my prayers daily for your 
prosperity in this world and future blessing in the 
another. ... I have communicated very often to 
Japanese who are in Monson Academy. I think a 
youngest of them is a fine scholar, and I hope he will 
become a good instrument for the future civilization 
of the benighted Japan. 


"I study Latin every forenoon, and exercise myself 
every afternoon in elocution, walking by the sea. In 
the evening I read the memoirs of Rev. Henry Martyn. 
It kindles my cold heart, and lowers my pride into 
humiliation. My faith and love to God and my fellow- 
men seemed me so faint that I could hardly perceive 
them. I am comforted by the words, 'Be of good 
cheer. Thy sins are forgiven thee.' While I was 
walking by the side of that boundless ocean I recalled 
also, 'Deep calleth unto deep,' and I said within my- 
self that though my sins are deep they would by no 
means exhaust the deep of God's love. Then I 
thanked God that my face was turned neither back 
nor to the sides, but forward. Afterwards I found 
myself very foolish and ignorant, saying: 'How could 
I promote his kingdom to my heathen friends, seeing 
I am so foolish and ignorant ? ' It seemed me the 
Lord answered: 'I will be thy master and teach thee 


my way. ' It is very strange that with such desire I 
find also evil powers in me very forcible. 

"This is hottest day of the year. But in my walk- 
ings I do not suffer much heat because of love of 

"I was very weary this morning. Evil powers in 
my heart tempted me to stay at home, saying it would 
not be sin if you kept your heart right ; you can read 
and praise and pray just well as in the church. I 
said, 'No, no.' Evil powers came in afternoon in like 
manner, saying, 'You are most too tired; you would 
not get much benefit because your head is drowsy.' 
I replied also, 'No, no, I will not miss the service 
unless I be too sick. ' ' 


AITOOVER, July 11, 1867. 

... It has occurred to me since breakfast that 
it would afford me some pleasure to write you a few 
lines in reference to Joseph in connection with the list 
of his needs which you requested him to make known 
to you from day to day. He is very modest about 
these things arid has not the least disposition to take 
any advantage of your charity, but is often troubled 
that his present position brings necessities for which 
he is entirely dependent upon you. He has been 
made very comfortable through you during his resi- 
dence in Andover, and I know you must feel rewarded 
in your own soul as you observe the improvement he 
has made in his studies and also in his general appear- 
ance. There is no question but that he has uncom- 
mon abilities, and what gives them their greatest bril- 
liancy is that he evidently does all that God may be 


From the first I have felt that it was a privilege 
to have his influence thrown in my way. It has been 
a talisman oftentimes to check my forgetful heart, 
and for this reason even I am very sorry to have him 
leave us. In him we are brought to see how truly we 
are one in Christ, the whole family of man. My 
dear Mrs. Hardy, I feel that as God in his providence 
has given you the means and the heart to take this 
heaven-directed wanderer into your charge, you have 
found a diamond of which the world is not worthy, 
of which you may well be proud, and that there will 
come into your soul a wealth of satisfaction which is 
its own reward. 

Joseph will shine anywhere. I hope the change 
to Amherst will be advantageous to him. At first he 
felt that he was hardly fit for college, but he is willing 
to acquiesce in all your plans, feeling they are made 
in his best interest. . . . He is careful to a fault, and 
shrinks from asking for necessary things, not because 
of your unwillingness, but from his high-born nature 
and manly character. We are sorry to lose his influ- 
ence from our midst. May God prosper him and 
you. . . . 


ANDOVEB, August 29, 1867. 

. . . Please accept the thanks of Mrs. Flint and 
myself for your very kind reference to our instructions 
of Joseph, and for what you are pleased to term "our 
kind and valuable interest in him." We expect no 
higher pleasure in any work this side of heaven than 
we have experienced in instructing and in attempting 
to guide Joseph in the ways of virtue and knowledge. 
Though I have taught for years, I have never been so 


interested in the mental and moral development of any 
other pupil. Our labor for him has been one of love. 
We have felt ourselves blessed in being able to give 
our efforts, our quenchless interest, and our prayers. 
We part from him with regret, but rejoice that Pro- 
fessor Seelye is to direct his course at Amherst. . . . 


ANDOVER, August 31, 1867. 

At the request of Mr. Alpheus Hardy I write you 
a few lines in regard to the bearer, Joseph Neesima. 
He has boarded in the same house in which I live, ever 
since I came to Andover, twenty-two months ago. 
Although he has attended Phillips Academy, Mrs. 
Flint and myself have given him much instruction in 
reading in the Bible, spelling, English grammar, 
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, etc. Joseph has mas- 
tered arithmetic, algebra, and the first two books in 
geometry. He is a very fine mathematician and is 
very desirous to study trigonometry and surveying. 
I think he would gain a good knowledge of these two 
branches in two terms. He wishes also to study phy- 
siology and supplement his present knowledge of nat- 
ural philosophy with chemistry. I think he would be 
delighted with the experiments in optics. 

He hopes very much to study mental and moral 
philosophy under your instructions. 

His eyes have been very weak ever since he came 
to Andover, and in my judgment it would not be wise 
for him to commence at present the study of Greek, 
on account of the peculiar trial to his eyes in the use 
of the lexicon. His necessary use of the English dic- 
tionary has been of more in jury to his eyes than all his 
other use of them. 


We have noticed Joseph's mental and moral de- 
velopment with intense interest and the greatest pleas- 
ure. During the first eight months after reaching 
Andover, notwithstanding his very little knowledge of 
English, he mastered the whole of arithmetic. His 
progress in other branches has been hardly less 
marked. He has been a most faithful and diligent 
student of the Bible, and has feasted his soul upon it. 
I have never known a person more absorbed in a novel 
than he in the Word of God. He has apprehended 
its meaning more readily than that of any other book. 
As the meaning of some new passage has flashed upon 
his mind his soul has been most profoundly moved. 

He is a gentleman in his manners. I have never, 
in a single instance, known him to be rude. His 
sense of propriety is most acute, and is often most 
beautiful. He fully appreciates all that is done for 
him. His gratitude to his instructors and benefactors 
seems to know no limit. His religious progress has 
been remarkable. I think he was converted before he 
reached Andover. As soon as truth reached his mind 
he seemed to be all ready to embrace it. He does his 
duty faithfully, fearlessly. Without doubt he would 
go to the stake rather than deny his Master. I have 
reason to believe he is most faithful in his secret devo- 
tions. He loves the society of the most devoted Chris- 
tians. He is modest and retiring and his true worth 
does not immediately appear, but he is one of the no- 
blest of men, and is worthy the fullest confidence. 
His word is truth. He will study all he is able to 
study without injury. Any funds in his hands will 
be most frugally spent; he needs no watching. His 
progress in speaking English has hardly kept pace 
with his progress in mastering the structure of the 


language and his facility in writing it. He is in- 
clined to take too little rather than too much exercise. 
Although I have taught for years, I have never 
"been so interested in any other pupil. I rejoice that 
you are to direct his education for a season. I shall 
hope to hear from him occasionally. 

It is not strange that those interested in educational 
and missionary work should feel drawn towards this 
young Japanese, whose hunger for light and truth was 
so intense, and whose flight from country and home 
was so dramatic in its incidents. But it is remarkable 
that this interest should everywhere and always de- 
velop into warm personal friendship. Wherever he 
went he found a home, at Amherst, in the house of 
Professor Seelye, where he passed much of his vaca- 
tion time, and where in illness he was received and 
cared for as a son. He often refers with pride in his 
journal to the fact that during Professor Seelye 's ab- 
sence he sat at the head of the table and led the fam- 
ily devotions, and, when ill in March, 1870, writes: 
"Professor and Mrs. Seelye are just kind and tender 
to me as my own parents." His health in Amherst 
was generally good, although he was at times troubled 
with rheumatism and weak eyes; but he was unfail- 
ingly cheerful, and bent upon improving to the utmost 
every opportunity. In 1868-69, Japan was passing 
through the stormy period of change, and Neesima 
was at this time very anxious concerning his friends, 
from whom he had not heard for nearly a year. 
Apprehensive for their safety and moved by that love 
of family which is so striking a trait of Japanese char- 
acter, it was with the greatest joy that he heard at last 
of their welfare and that his aged grandfather was 


still alive and well. He possessed the elasticity of 
temperament characteristic of his race, but his deep 
faith in God, to whom he committed both himself and 
his dear ones, alone enabled him to maintain the se- 
renity of his purpose not to turn back in the path 
which he had chosen. 

His course of study in Amherst College was a spe- 
cial one, for he had no previous knowledge of Greek 
or Latin. China had been his Greece and Rome. He 
here, however, began the study of Latin, and in re- 
turn for instruction in Japanese given to his room- 
mate, Mr. Wm. J. Holland, received from the latter 
instruction in Greek. In 1869, Mr. Holland became 
the head-master of the Amherst High School, and Nee- 
sima was thus enabled to continue under his guid- 
ance his Greek studies. Of the natural sciences, 
chemistry, physics, botany, mineralogy, and geology, 
he was especially fond, and he retained his interest in 
these branches throughout his life. Mr. Holland, 
who subsequently visited Japan as naturalist of the 
expedition sent out by the United States government 
to observe the total eclipse of the sun, was at that 
tune devoted to scientific study, and in his company 
Neesima enjoyed many pleasant excursions to the 
environs of Amherst in search of mineralogical and 
botanical specimens. His note-books contain very 
accurate and complete abstracts of the lectures on 
physics and chemistry, with drawings of all the ap- 
paratus employed. These drawings were made during 
the lecture with a rapidity and facility which aston- 
ished his classmates. 

It is well known that the Japanese mind does not 
turn naturally to speculative inquiry. Confucianism, 
as a code of ceremonial usage concerned with practi- 


cal, political, and social duties, has impressed itself 
far more strongly upon the national life than Bud- 
dhism, whose overshadowing content of philosophy has 
failed to awaken the national sympathies. An ear- 
nest student of history, Neesima was comparatively 
uninterested in the metaphysical abstractions of west- 
ern philosophy. He pursued the subjects of mental 
and moral science with that fidelity which character- 
ized his every effort to fit himself to be a teacher of 
his people, but the practical and ethical side was ever 
more attractive to him than the speculative and con- 
troversial, and western literature and poetry occupied 
his thought far less than western science, history, and 
ethics. His mind was alert, his perceptions quick, 
and his rank as a student high; but, while his mental 
ability was conspicuous, it was his character and life 
which left the deepest impression upon his teachers 
and associates. "You cannot gild gold," was the 
testimonial of Professor Seelye, when his pupil was 
about to return to Japan. His room-mate during 
1868-69 says: "He was the soul of neatness, and 
entered lovingly upon the self-imposed task of keeping 
our rooms in perfect order. This scrupulous neatness 
and cleanliness was the first trait which impressed it- 
self upon my mind. He was also uniformly cheerful 
and of a remarkably studious spirit. Not less striking 
was his religious faith. The broad study -table which 
we used in common was divided by an imaginary line 
upon which his Bible was laid, and night and morning 
this loved book was faithfully and carefully perused. 
He possessed a keen sense of the humorous, and even 
at times essayed a witticism in the English language. 
After a Ley den jar has been discharged, a feeble sec- 
ondary discharge may often be evoked, known as the 


'residual discharge.' The 4th of July, 1869, had 
been characterized by an unusual degree of patriotic 
hilarity in our quiet college town. On the morning 
of the 5th, as Neesima and I were repairing to break- 
fast, we encountered a small boy who rushed out and 
exploded a fire-cracker. Turning to me with a smile, 
Neesima said: 'I suppose, Holland, that is the resid- 
ual discharge. ' As long as I shall live I shall deem 
it one of the great privileges of the last year I spent 
in college that I was permitted to be associated with 
this man, and one of the greatest honors of my life 
that I was enabled in some degree to help him for- 
ward in his education and partially fit him for the 
great work which he accomplished." Another class- 
mate writes: "He was always at the class prayer- 
meetings and frequently took part. His English was 
broken then and his vocabulary small, but his heart 
was big and full of love. Through every word and 
act transparent shone the man, winning the respect 
of all. It is this characteristic which has fitted him 
to 'stand before kings.' He was not one of those 
good Sunday-school book boys, but bright, keen, and 
full of fun ; and it was always the great amusement of 
the class to listen to his shrewd answers to the pro- 
fessors when we knew that these answers came from 
his 'inner consciousness' rather than from the book. 
No one ever saw anything mean in him: there was 
nothing dishonorable in his make-up. He was mod- 
est, patient, brave, and the highest reach of his am- 
bition was to lose himself in the consecration of his 
life and thought to his Master." I quote from one 
more witness to his college life: "Neesima possessed 
that element of true worth which meets with recog- 
nition, not because it is consciously revealed, but 


because it is not. He was never obtrusive. I never 
knew him to speak of himself, or even of what he 
hoped to accomplish, unless questioned; then one dis- 
covered that his ambition was to do not only for Japan 
but for the world. It would not be easy for any 
one who knew him in college to forget him even if his 
life had ended there ; for there was in him an uplift- 
ing influence which made one wish to be on the 
heights where he lived and walked. He seemed to be 
there and to belong there without any sign of strug- 
gle to get there or to stay there. The even quietness 
of his life did not exclude quickness of action and 
alertness of manner. He was a pleasant companion, 
a delightful member of the families fortunate enough 
to count him one of their number, a true Christian 
gentleman, always thoughtful of God and therefore 
always thoughtful of others." 

From the letters written during his Amherst life 
constant allusions to his expenses have been omitted, 
only such references being retained as serve to show 
how exact he was in his accounts and with what scru- 
pulous care he regulated his expenditures. On the 
other hand, he was entirely frank in making known 
his needs. The simplicity and truthfulness of his 
character shone in every reference to himself, and an 
air of self-possession compelled instant confidence in 
all he said ; for this self-possession was seen to result, 
not from self-confidence, but from self-forgetfulness. 
In the recitation room he made known his ignorance 
with the same frankness with which he stated his 
wants, a frankness wholly devoid of self-seeking ; and 
che same trait was conspicuous in sickness, when one 
felt that he described his pain in sober truthfulness, 
just as it was, making it neither more nor less be- 
cause it was his. 



AMHEBST, September 23, 1867. 

... I moved to the College (North College, No. 
8) last Saturday. Prof. Seelye got for me all things 
which I need, and I paid up for them all, because 
he thought it is not best way to make little debts 
here and there. I send a list to you so that you may 
know how many things I bought and how much I paid 
for them. I wish you would send some money to me 
to get daily wants. I will make an oath to you that 
I will never spend money foolishly, but be very pru- 
dent, because my Heavenly Father provides all good 
things for me so that I can say: "I shall not want." 
When I buy anything I will write down each time 
and will show it to you sometime. 

My room is quite large and very pleasant. My 
roommate is very quiet, nice, and Christian young 
man. I am thankful I have found such a young man 
to room with. We keep up our daily duty toward our 
Heavenly Father by faith and prayers. I enjoy to 
board in Club. We have a very nice table generally. 
I joined to the missionary band in the College. We 
have interesting meetings every Sabbath morning. It 
is very pleasant for us to meet together, sing, praise 
our Maker, and ask Hun that he would help us to carry 
the glad tidings to poor heathens. I am thankful that 
God called me out of the darkness and made me know 
the place where I may rest the eternal rest. There- 
fore I am entirely willing to preach the Gospel to my 
countrymen so that they may also be happy as I am. 
When I proclaim the truth to them perhaps they will 
persecute me, but I am not afraid of it, having this 
confidence in Jesus that though I should die in the 


dark regions He would cause me to live in the bright 
heaven forever. I saw in some paper sixty -three Jap- 
anese native Christians were arrested at Yokohama. 
But I say, it will stand, it must stand, and the Gospel 
must be known to them. 

I feel always grateful for your kind care and I 
pray in your behalf without ceasing. I would like to 
hear from you very much. 


AMHERST, October 30, 1867. 

... I am very happy to tell you about my fa- 
ther's letter which I have first received since I left 
home. He received my letter which I wrote him last 
spring from Andover. He says that some American 
gentleman in Yokohama sent my letter by his faithful 
Japanese friend to him so that no trouble might fall 
on it. He was waiting there to get his reply and 
carry it to Yokohama, therefore my father wrote it 
with great haste. I will not tell you all what he said, 
but a few particular points. He was very anxious of 
me since he heard the information of my escaping 
from Hakodate. But he was so glad to hear from me 
over the water and find out where I am and how I am 
successful. He did not complain much for my leav- 
ing Japan, but, seems me, he was very much con- 
tented of it, because I wrote to him about beautiful 
American customs, and told him also what I do, what 
I study, how I feel happy, and how / believe in true 
God. His family are all well. My grandfather is still 
living. He is eighty -two years old and his health is 
quite well. He wrote to me a Japanese short poem 
which means that he is expecting my return most every 
day. I hope he would live till my return, so that I 
may tell him the way where he may find Jesus. . . . 


He did not reply about the religion which I ex- 
plained to him quite plainly. I suppose he had not 
time to write many things. I also received letters 
from my friend who lives in my prince's house, my 
brother, and sister. My friend says he did always try 
to comfort my parents and grandfather so that they 
might not be too much anxious of me, and he will 
comfort them in future also. He told me he will take 
good care for my family as well as his family. My 
brother says when he read my letter that he was so 
excited that the tears ran over his face, and cold per- 
spiration covered whole his body. He gave much 
thanks for my advice and instruction. He is studying 
Chinese in a high school. He feels quite ignorant 
and humble. He says he is like a flag which dwells 
in a small well and sees the heavens in little space. 
He wishes to see vast ocean and wide heaven. He 
comes in his prince's house every day and teaches 
Chinese to many children. My sister says she is pray- 
ing for me to her vain gods every day I am pity of 
her. . . . 


AMHERST, November 16, 1867. 

. . . My vacation will come pretty soon, but I 
know not where I may go. Will you tell me where I 
may go ? I hope I would study some during the va- 
cation, but if you find good chance I will work some- 
thing to pay my expenses. I asked Prof. Seelye about 
my staying in the College room during vacation, but 
he told me the law of the college does not allow to 
keep any students in the rooms during the winter va- 
cation lest the building should get fire. He invites 
me to spend the vacation with him. I don't know 


myself which way I should take. Please tell me 
which way I may take. I will follow your informa- 

Last Sunday morning Dr. Treat preached at the 
chapel. In the afternoon Rev. Mr. Wheeler gave 
full account of his work at Harpoot, and at the even- 
ing Dr. Clark made remarks to evangelize Chinese 
empire, and made a noble statement to send a thou- 
sand missionaries to North China within ten years. 
They were very good and encouraged me very much 
indeed. I was almost persuaded to go forth to fight 
against Babylon, and break down the great wall of 
Satan. Yet I must nourish up myself and must wait 
until I have full strength and knowledge of our Lord 
Jesus Christ. This thought keeps me always happy 
and encourages me to go on my daily studies. . . . 


AMHEBST, December 1, 1867. 

... I had a letter from Mrs. Hardy last Mon- 
day. She invited me to spend the vacation with her 
and told me Capt. Taylor has arrived in Boston. So 
I must go up to Boston by all means. I proposed to 
go last Monday when I finish my sawing wood (O, 
hard wood ! made my spinal column pain !), but the 
same morning two young men called on me unexpect- 
edly. Do you think who they are ? Two Japanese 
from Monson. They hindered my sawing wood but 
I was perfectly satisfied to spend a few days with my 

When I saw them I did not know whether should 
I speak English or Japanese, but they began to talk 
Japanese with me, so I was obliged to speak my own 
tongue. At first I found some confusion to talk to 


them, but I did speak better and faster than they did. 
They stayed in my room whole morning, and the af- 
ternoon I showed them all cabinets and Gymnasium. 
I called on them at Hotel in the evening and I stayed 
there after ten o'clock. We read together 28th chap- 
ter of St. Matthew. I think they understood the chap- 
ter quite well, but they found trouble to understand 
the Trinity; so I explained to them far as I know. 
They asked me to make prayers, but I could not make 
them in Japanese, so I made them in English. 
Though they cannot speak English freely, yet they 
understand English very well. 

These two are best scholars among those Japanese 
in Monson. I hope they will become good instru- 
ments to their countrymen. I spoke with them about 
the religious matters during these hours. They found 
their sins ; they found also the way where they meet 
their Master. They have humble and beautiful spir- 
its, just as little children. They thought first they 
would study some sciences to benefit their country, 
but God opened their blind eyes and took away thick 
veil between them and heaven. He made them know 
the grace through which they may have immortality. 
So they feel grateful for his tender care towards them 
(though they are sinners) and they hope also to do 
some good things to their people for the sake of 
Christ. I am thankful that God bless my country- 
men so much, and I hope the time will soon come for 
Gospel to bear fruit in the barren and unmatured 

The Japanese referred to in the above letter were 
two of six sent to this country, under assumed names 
and without the knowledge of the home government, 


by the prince of Satsuma. After the revolution of 
1868, the Japanese government assumed their sup- 
port and required them to resume their real names. 
They were all earnest students, and one of them was 
subsequently associated with President William S. 
Clark in the establishment of an agricultural college 
in Japan and was appointed governor of Yezo. In 
these fellow-countrymen Neesima took the deepest in- 
terest, visiting them at Monson on several occasions 
and corresponding with them for many years. 


January 10, 1868. 

This is the beginning of the year, therefore I hope 
to renew my spirit to perform my Christian duty bet- 
ter, and to keep up my Christian light intenser and to 
be ready for His calling. I am praying and watch- 
ing lest I should fall into sin. So I am praying for 
your family in same manner. Take good care for 
your health and enjoy yourself under the cross. 

February 14, 1868. 

I enjoy my college life very much, and I cannot 
express my great and deep joy in Jesus with my pen. 
He helps me to resist all evils, He comforts me with 
the Holy Spirit, He guides me in the path of righteous 
with his gentle hand, saying, "Come, take the water 
of life freely." Is it not kind invitation for a sinner 
like me? When I think of his grace I do not think 
about the world's things. I like to do something 
boldly for the advancement of his kingdom. 


February 21, 1868. 

I had a recent news from Japan which told me 
about war between Shogun and princes. Shogun 's 
residence in Yedo was burned by a mob of Satsuma 
prince who educates the young men at Monson. It is 
very short walk from my home, but I dd not feel anx- 
ious about my folks because I demand them under the 
protection of the Almighty Hand. 

To-morrow will be holiday. We shall not have 
any recitations. I should like to have such a day 
once and a while. I salute you all for the day, for 
the gift of the hero to this nation, and for independ- 
ence. I should like to see such freedom in my coun- 

March 25, 1868. 

My coat sleeves and button holes almost wear out, 
and its color fades away some. If you have coat at 
hand I wish you would give me one so that I may 
wear it to the church. But if you have not any I will 
wait till the next fall, because it is not my privilege 
to wear new clothing. But it shall be my great de- 
sire to wear a pure and white robe in the future 

March 30, 1868. 

I have been quite nervous these four or five weeks. 
I was not able to sleep soundly. Dr. Hitchcock rec- 
ommend me to take footbath every evening and eat 
some light things just before I go to bed to stupefy 
my brain. I did so faithfully sometime, but I stopped 
it last week because I can sleep better than used be 
also I do not wish to spend money in such vain 
way. Does Mr. Hardy take much walk? I think 
the walking is essential and also desirable for business 
men and students. When I study long while in my 


room I feel oppressive and tiresome, but when I go 
out in field, open my lung and breathe abundant oxy- 
gen, I feel always light, happy, and vigorous. It is 
only way for me to restore my health, so I wish Mr. 
Hardy would take much exercise in open air. Please 
give my love to him and all. 

In April of this year Neesima was confined to his 
bed for several weeks by a sharp attack of inflamma- 
tory rheumatism, and was kindly cared for at the 
house of Professor Seelye. 

AMHEBST, April 27, 1868. 

I received your kind letter and check and an in- 
closure from Japan in due time. I thank you for 
your kind request for my illness. I feel almost bet- 
ter, but Prof. Seelye still keeps me in his house. I 
do not know what I should do for his kindness but 
thanks only. He is very much afraid that I should 
take cold again because the weather is so changeable 
and unpleasant, and does not allow me to go to recita- 
tions. So I am still staying in his house. He pleases 
to have me in his home very much because Mrs. Seelye 
does not yet come back from Albany. But I must go 
back to my room soon as I can. When I received 
your check I thought it would be very hard work for 
me to obtain so much with my own hand and felt 
grateful for your gift. When Prof. Seelye 's man 
brought me your letter he told me, "this is from your 
home," not knowing truly where it came from. 
When I looked at its direction I perceived it came 
from you, but I felt some soft thing in it like Japan 
paper, so I replied him "probably it may be." Then 
I opened it. It was really a letter from home. My fa- 


ther told me lie wrote me sometime ago before that, but 
I have not received it yet. He says his family is all 
well except my mother, she has been so anxious of me 
since I took my adventure. My sister wrote me also. 
They send their especial regards and much thanks 
to you. Beside that, there is great confusion among 
the people. The people of Yedo have great fear that 
the enemy of Shogun should attack the city, so my 
father and all wish me come back. But I am not his 
own. How can I go back now, having a plow on 
my hands? I must prepare myself for my Master's 
work. Yet I think I can do great good for my 
mother here. I can pray fervently for her. God is 
present everywhere, so I trust He will take care of her. 
If I go back now I suppose I must go to war. I do 
not wish at all to kill myself in such a barbarous war. 
But I devote myself to go to battle against Satan, 
taking the helmet of salvation and the sword of the 
Spirit, which is the word of God. Will you remem- 
ber my mother in your prayers ? I pray for her many 
times a day. I hope God will preserve her life till 
she may hear the word of life. 

AMHERST, June 15, 1868. 

I began lately to collect minerals, because I 
thought it will be worth to me to know something 
about them. When I was home I thought Japan is a 
farming country, but I think now she is a mineral 
country. There are several mines of gold, silver, cop- 
per, iron, platinum (lately discovered), and many pre- 
cious stones. But the people generally keep temples 
of gods on summits of mountains, and dare not touch 
them, even though they see veins of minerals very 
plainly, lest they should defile the temples of gods and 


gods would pour out wrath upon them. Perhaps I 
may not spend much time for minerals when I go 
home, but I hope I will teach them only wise Creator, 
remove their foolish ideas, and stir them up to take in 
Christian civilization. 

Most of his vacation time Neesima spent in visiting 
his friends in Boston, the Flints at Hinsdale, the Hid- 
dens at Andover, and the family of Captain Taylor at 
Chatham. He also made several extensive tours in 
Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island, col- 
lecting minerals and geological specimens, and in the 
summer of 1868 planned with great anticipation an 
excursion for this purpose to the White Mountains, 
an account of which he gives in the following letter : 


AMHERST, August 22, 1868. 

... I am very happy to write a few lines to you 
from my beloved Amherst. I returned here yesterday 
very safely. I was received kindly by Prof. Seelye, 
and I am now staying in his house because I cannot 
get in my room until next Monday. I can only say 
I have had a great grand time. I have been tramp- 
ing more than five weeks and more than four hundred 
miles. Yet my feet are not sore at all. I understood 
very well how to manage them. I feel grateful to you 
for furnishing money to me for spending this vacation 
in such a profitable and pleasant manner. I met my 
companions at Worcester and began our tramp from 
there. We came through Boston, Andover, Law- 
rence, Salem, N. H., and we spent the first Sabbath 
on our way at Raymond, N. H. We were invited to 
make some remarks in evening prayer-meeting. We 


made remarks about mission work to awake up mis- 
sionary spirit among that church. The meeting was 
very full and the people very attentive to our re- 
marks. A gentleman made a motion to raise more 
money than the last time to help the mission cause. 
They gave us meals and lodging without charge. 

We crossed Lake Winnipiseogee with a steam- 
boat. It was mostly smoky weather to see distant 
view. I was unwell a little while at Jackson by tak- 
ing bath in Diana Fall. I stopped in Jackson House 
about two days. It took my money off very badly. 
We went up Mt. Washington on 3d inst. from Glen 
side. We stopped there two days and one night on 
account of the smoky weather. We saw most glori- 
ous sunset. Then we came down Crawford side. 
We went up Cannon Mountain and went near to the 
rock which forms profile of Old Man. Then we vis- 
ited Flume, and took photograph of our party. I 
suppose I can procure one for you. Our party was 
broken up from Flume, because I wanted to visit sev- 
eral mines in Franconia, Lisbon, and Warren, and 
they would not care about visiting them. They went 
down on Plymouth route, and I came up Ore Hill in 
Franconia, gold mine in Lisbon, and copper mine in 
Warren. So I obtained quite knowledge about min- 
erals in vacation. Last Saturday I left Warren about 
half past four P. M. and traveled through a woods 
after 7 o'clock. It was quite dark, yet I could not 
find any house to pass that night, and when I came 
across a house, man would not receive me in his house, 
even in his barn, so I was obliged to come still farther. 
Finally I found a house some way beyond that and 
passed that night in a barn. Just after I got in barn 
it stormed furiously. It was rather old barn and 


leaked all over, but rubber blanket kept me dry. The 
next day was the Lord's day, but there was not any 
house where I may keep the day. Many folks round 
that way would not care about the day. Some of 
them worked in garden. So I was obliged to travel 
nine miles on that morning. I arrived at a meeting- 
house of O just before the morning commences. 

Out appearance of the house is very old and looks 
unpainted, but inside is very well furnished. They 
had not a regular preaching there on account of the 
absence of their pastor. The people of that place 
seem me very rich. Yes, rich enough to support sev- 
eral pastors. Yet they did not get any minister to 
supply the pulpit. The people dressed very nicely, 
but they appeared only cold in the worship. I can 
say surely that I never have been such a dry and cold 
meeting since I came to America. I went in some old 
gentleman's class in the Sabbath-school. It is most 
cold and uninviting school I ever been. I crossed the 
river and went in F meeting-house that after- 
noon. I heard an old and bright preacher there. I 
found out afterwards it was Miss McKeen's father, 
and I tried to see him, but he does not reside there. 
A gentleman received me cordially, and I was also 
invited to make some remarks in prayer-meeting. I 
told them our heathenish customs and manners. The 
night after I stopped in a part of Windsor, Vt. 
When I went near to a house I saw a young gentleman 
sitting on a chair. I asked him whether he would let 
me sleep in his barn over the night. He asked me 
who I was and whence I came. I told him my name 
and where I came from. He called up his mother to 
see me. When she understood I am a Japanese she 
told me she read something about me in a religious 


paper. She said very kindly, 'I would not let Chris- 
tian man sleep in our barn.' After a few conversa- 
tion she took me to a handsomely furnished bedroom 
and brought me all things which are necessary. I 
had very sweet rest and sleep more than eight hours. 
The next morning she gave me nice breakfast, also 
many tracts and small pocket hymn-book. I doubt 
not she is good Christian lady. Also that young man 
gave me ride to the village about a mile and half. 
Some people are so liberal and good to such a stran- 

On his way down the Connecticut valley Neesima 
passed through Hanover, and with his characteristic 
habit of seizing every opportunity attended a lecture 
at the medical school then in session. Professor Oli- 
ver P. Hubbard, on the way to his morning lecture, 
met the young pedestrian and mistook him for one of 
the St. Francis tribe of Indians from Canada. He 
was about to accost him when Neesima inquired for 
the professor of mineralogy. Professor Hubbard then 
introduced himself and invited Neesima to his labora- 
tory, where the latter exhibited the minerals contained 
in his satchel and watched with interest the prepara- 
tions of the assistant. After the lecture was con- 
cluded, he courteously took leave and resumed his 


September 19, 1868. 

. . . Regard to $10. which I obtained from fur- 
niture, I do not know where it has gone. It disap- 
peared very strangely. I kept it in my trunk, but it 
is lost somewhere. I am sure no one could steal it 


because I kept trunk locked always. So I think I 
have taken it out and paid it to a store in some even- 
ing, mistaking it as one dollar. I do not spend money 
foolishly, as you know well, and if I do I give you its 
account always. I am sorry to say I have lost it by 
my carelessness. I wish you would excuse my care- 
lessness, but do not think I have deceived you, spend- 
ing it by some foolish way. I am preparing myself 
to be good man and striving daily to walk with God. 
So I would not deceive you by all means. 

October 1, 1868. 

... I received a package a week ago Tuesday. 
I found in it a coat, a tail-coat, a vest, and a pair of 
pants. I hope you will excuse me that I do not take 
that tail-coat. I think I have not old enough or dig- 
nity enough to wear that coat. You must excuse me, 
because my chum laughed at me when I put on that 
tail-coat. I have three vests now, so I shall not take 
that vest too. I want clothings, but not more than 

November 8, 1868. 

... I asked Mr. Hardy to procure Dana's Min- 
eralogy. I wanted it very much but durst not ask 
you so long on account of expense. But I made up 
my mind some time ago that I would save its ex- 
pense by some way. I stopped my drinking tea. It 
does not amount to much in one term, but it will be 
considerable in the course of a year. I hope you will 
excuse me my asking you to procure such an expen- 
sive book. I inclose the list of my college expenses. 
I spent more than I did expect, but I hope you will 
not find any fault in me. ... I hate indeed to trouble 


myself so often and so constantly in this carnal sup- 
ply, and anticipate now I shall be exceedingly happy 
when I get rid of all troubles of this kind and reach 
to the place where I may wear one pure and white 
robe which shall not need any more mending, washing, 
or changing. Yet I think it is very reasonable to 
take care for my body while I am in this world. 


AMHEKST, May 21, 1869. 

... I heard from my folks some time ago as you 
know. I have been longing their news more than 
one year, so it gave me great pleasure and consolation. 
My father wrote me very long and kind letter and in- 
formed me all about what wonderful change has taken 
place in Japan within a few years. Most of the peo- 
ple of high ranks cut their hairs short and dress in the 
American style. 

My father find more satisfactory in my being in 
this country, seeing such a wonderful change is going 
on among the leading class of the people and knowing 
that the educational system of the western nations 
would soon be introduced into Japan. You may see 
in his letter which he has written to you how he was 
glad when he heard from me and understood that I 
have found good friends in this side of the world. 
He asked me to translate it into English so that you 
may know what he writes about. I have translated 
it nearly as he expressed his idea in his own way. 
My sister and brother have written to you too, but 
I have not translated them, because they contain 
nearly the same thing as my father said. I hope 
you will accept their thanks and best regards and 
appreciate how they have felt grateful for what you 


have done for me. I wish you would give him a re- 
ply, at least a few lines, and if you please, I will 
translate yours into Japanese. I think it will please 
him greatly. 


YEDO, February, 1869. 

Though I have not known you personally I will 
write to you a few lines. I suppose you are enjoying 
your good health, though the weather is still cold, and 
I am glad of it in your behalf. 

When my son Shimeta came over to your country 
desiring to obtain some knowledge, you did sympa- 
thize with him and hearkened his request so kindly 
and sent him to a school, promising him that you 
would supply all his wants while he is in the school. 
So you have already supplied his wants without any 
lack during the past years. I could not express my 
joy and thanks neither by pen nor paper for what you 
have done for him. Though I myself and all my fam- 
ily have felt very grateful for your kindness, and 
talked over of you most every day, yet I have not 
written to you at all. It condemns my conscience 
greatly that I have neglected it thus far. 

Though my son is not very bright yet I expect he 
will become a reputable man through your kindness 
and I rejoice greatly in his behalf. I humbly entreat 
you now that you would continue your mercy on him 
while he remains in your country. I have also the 
great obligation to your wife for what kindness she 
has shown to him. I have felt somewhat proud and 
spoken often of myself "what happy man I am! " for 
my son has fallen into such good hands as you are. I 
have been talking and wishing to come over to your 


country to see you face to face and give you my 
thanks, which is higher than the highest mountain 
and deeper than the -deepest ocean. Yet I am bound 
in my duty and am not able to cross over the water, 
so I will send you only my thanks which burst out 
from my heart. My father is eighty-four years old 
now and is always talking of your kindness and also 
his grandson's fortune. He asked me to send his 
thanks and best regards to you all. I hope I shall 
write to you again. I write this with a fear and rev- 



AMHEKST, September 3, I860. 

... I enjoyed my trip through Connecticut and 
Rhode Island very much and had also very enjoyable 
time at Chatham. It is rather quiet place, but I 
liked it more than a noisy city because the quietness 
of nature led me to a quiet meditation. I think it 
was the best part of my vacation to have my mind 
free from the study and to have a quiet meditation on 
the wonderful economy of nature or a sweet commun- 
ion with Him who rules our whole universe and even 
cares for a poor sinner such as I am. 

I am getting along nicely in my study. I like my 
new chum very much. He is very earnest Christian. 
O, what charming place Amherst is! I shall never 
be tired in studying here. I hope you will be chari- 
table on me and not laugh at my hasting letter. I 
am just busy as bees and cannot spend much time for 
doing else but study. I hope God will sustain my 
strength to prepare for my life work. 

Though you should delay your reply for my letter 


a month or a year I shall never have a slight doubt of 
your interest in me, because I hope you are my dear- 
est friend. Yet I am always desiring to hear from 
you, and when I write to you I am anxiously waiting 
for your reply, because I always wish to know of your 
prosperity. If you are too busy, please write me a 
few lines, only a few lines. Let me know how you 


AMHERST, October 24, 1869. 

... A secretary of the American Missionary So- 
ciety preached to us this morning, and stated to us 
very vividly in what fearful point the American peo- 
ple stands now. They have 8,000,000 Irish people 
and many Germans and French, 4,000,000 negroes in 
South, many thousands of Chinese, and a few Japan- 
ese on the Pacific coast. Unless the American people 
stretch out their hands to enlight, elevate, and educate 
them with the Christian truth they will ruin the free 
institution which is the pride of the nation. I was 
quite animated by his earnest discourse and felt in- 
deed it is our best privilege to co-work with Christ 
and to promote his kingdom. When I came out from 
the chapel I heard great many say, "I don't like his 
sermon," and they did not manifest their sympathy 
with him at all. I felt so sorry for their coldness in 
their heart and disinterest for the Church of Christ 
and for the welfare of their own country. All hea- 
thens look at America as the centre of the Christian 
light. If the centre of the light has not much intense- 
ness, how could it enlight those who are lying in the 
remote dark corners ? My dear friend, let us pray 
earnestly for those Christians who live for themselves 


and not for Christ. Let us pray for the American 
church so that she may be more jealous for promoting 
the blessed gospel to all nations. . . . My folks are 
all well. My father is still staying in Yedo with his 
prince, but he says he will soon leave his office and 
go home for rest because he has found his duty rather 
tedious in his age. Sometime he was obliged to sit 
up till two or three o'clock toward the morning for 
his inexcusable duty. It would be better for him to 
take a rest in a quiet country town, but his leaving 
the city will cause me a sad thing. Perhaps I may 
not hear from him so often as used to be. When he 
writes to me he always carries it himself to Yokohama 
to be mailed to America. He is very careful for 
sending his letter to me. He never trusts it to a post- 
man lest his secret communication to me should be 
revealed by some accidental way. When he gets 
home he could not carry his letter down to Yokohama 
any more, because it would be most too far for him to 
walk, about 60 miles from Yedo. I demand my 
folks entirely on the providential care. Whatever 
thing may happen to them, I will say it is the Lord's 

In the summer of 1869 Neesima made another ex- 
cursion, partly on foot and partly by rail, of which 
the following notes are taken from his diary : 

"July 15th. I left Amherst on 10.30 train for 
Hartford, where I stopped with my old acquaintance, 
Mr. D. E. Bartlett. I was very cordially received by 
him. He took me to the city library, and also to the 
top of the State House where we could look down the 
whole city. It was a most striking sight that the 


brick and sandstone edifices were interwoven with 
the green trees. 

"16th. I left Hartford for Middletown. on the 
noon train. When I came to the town I was told 
that the commencement exercises of Wesleyan Uni- 
versity are being held in Methodist church. But the 
house was filled up by the audience. While I was 
hesitating near the entrance somebody pulled my arm 
from behind, and when I look back I behold Mr. A. 
of '70 smiling with his large blue eyes. He had just 
come from Haddam and informed me whom I should 
see there, and where I may obtain my loving objects 
[minerals]. So I was very much encouraged to go 
forward to Haddam. But it was not quite time then 
for the steamer. To pass the time profitably I crossed 
the river by a ferryboat, and visited the sandstone 
quarry at Portland. Though I saw many specimens 
of bird-tracks, the man in the oflice would not part me 
any. I left Middletown on six o'clock boat after 
the dark. It thundered and rained furiously, and I 
admired the scene very much. Mr. W. B. accommo- 
dated me a room and meals, though his wife was not 
quite well. I think they love me some. I was very 
successful in obtaining tourmalines, but not very in 
getting columbites. 

"21st. I left Haddam for New Haven on foot, 
walking about seventeen miles that afternoon, though 
I spent considerable time for trouting and berrying. 
I passed the night in a farmhouse in North Guilford. 
The lady in the house treated me very kindly and 
would not charge me positively for either lodging or 

"22d. It rained quite hard in the morning, but 
the weather was very beautiful and the sun was quite 


hot in the afternoon. I washed my undershirt and 
stockings at a small brook. When I reached New 
Haven I went to a hotel to pass the night. 

"23d. The commencement exercise of Yale Col- 
lege is held at the Central Church. I saw there two 
Japanese, Yoshida and Ohara. I did not like the 
exercises quite well, not seeing much Christian ele- 
ment in them. I visited the Mineralogical cabinet and 
Art Gallery. I admired the picture of the prophet 
Jeremiah. Some careless fellows thought I was a so- 
ciety man and invited me to A. K. E. Society hall. The 
room used for the literary purpose is very well fur- 
nished. I saw there many glasses, and wine bottles 
on the stairs. So I am glad to find out what secret 
meant. While they were showing the rooms they 
asked me where did I join to the society. I replied: 
'I have not joined to the society yet. Perhaps I shall 
if I find time enough. ' I think they were no little 
surprised to hear my reply. 

"24th. I visited limestone quarry at Smithfield, 
eight miles from Providence, and found nice speci- 
mens there. I came to Providence to pass the night." 

Neesima was intensely interested in all mechanical 
processes and the industrial arts, most of what he saw 
being of course entirely new to him. On this excur- 
sion he visited the arsenal at Springfield, the factories 
and foundries of the cities through which he passed, 
his notebook containing over two hundred pages de- 
scribing minutely the manufacture of iron, brass, 
small arms, cartridges, gas, paper, wire, cotton cloth, 
plated ware, confectionery, etc., with innumerable 
drawings of the machinery and tools employed. 

The remainder of the summer vacation Neesima 


passed at Chatham with the family of Captain Taylor. 
On December llth Captain Taylor was caught be- 
tween the ferryboat and the dock while landing at 
East Boston, and died almost immediately. Nee- 
sima's journal of this month contains the following 
passages : 

"I write this to remember this sad event for myself, 
and also to warn my friends to be ready always for 
the Master's call. It was on Monday morning, Dec. 
13th, 1869, that a little fellow brought me a yellow 
letter, asking me quite briskly whether it belonged to 
me. It was a dispatch informing me that Captain 
Taylor was dead. It gave me a great surprise. I 
did not know myself what to do. I was perfectly 
silent and calm. I was still sitting in my chair, say- 
ing to myself 'I do not believe this, it is my dream. 
It is not possible. It is not true. ' I was without a 
tear, without a word, but . . . Then I rose calmly, 
and slowly went to a wall where hung his small like- 
ness, and gazed upon it with wide opening eyes. He 
looked very active, not like a dead person. So I has- 
tily stepped to the telegraph office and asked an officer 
whether there was no mistake in that dispatch. It 
was true. So I gave up all my doubts and hastened 
to the railroad. While I was in the cars I was 
deeply affected. It was very heavy cross for me to 
bear. When I walked it was like a lame man, helped 
by my umbrella. I did not see Mrs. Taylor that even- 
ing lest my presence might excite her grief, but when 
I saw the brothers and sisters I bursted out in a loud 
cry. I cannot describe by my pen such sad scenes. 
All his kind deeds of deep interest in me since I knew 
him in China, and how I spent my vacation with him 


about ten weeks ago, came to my memory. I could 
not possibly raise up my head, but only turn aside and 
weep bitterly. How can I tell why he was so dear to 
me. I fell into his kind hand at Shanghai ; he gave 
me China jacket, showing me how to sew; he taught 
me navigation ; he spoke patiently, forgave me always, 
and never spoke to me any unkind words ; he intro- 
duced me to him who became my kind friend ever since. 
At our last good-by he kissed me. My captain, this is 
my last kiss. His forehead was cold as marble. 

"Then I said good-by to Mrs. Taylor and her little 
infant boy. Tor the Lamb which is in the midst of 
the Throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto 
living fountains of waters ; and God shall wipe away 
all tears from their eyes. ' ' 


AMHEKST, April 5, 1870. 

Having found myself quite comfortable I will write 
you a few lines. Since I wrote you my last let- 
ter I have been improving gradually and gaining 
strength. I began to go out of doors last Friday and 
walked to and fro in the front yard of Prof. Seelye's 
house, but to-day is quite cold and stormy, so I am 
obliged to keep myself quiet in my warm room. 
Though I feel almost well as usual, yet it does seem 
me strange that I cannot endure long while in doing 
anything. Though I get over my cold I have not en- 
joyed my health ever since ; partly I had headache and 
partly I was nervous. Yet I was so much pressed by 
my duty, and kept up my study just much as I could. 
I never liked to complain for it, and kept up cheer- 
fully my studies and my prayers till I was taken down 
entirely by this rheumatism. I never had such an ill 


health since I have been in this country. I fear some- 
what if I continue my study in the beginning of next 
term as I did this term I may entirely break down. 
So I think it well for me to rest for a while and to get 
a renewed health. But you must not understand that 
I am getting tired of study. I am longing it and 
strongly tempted to begin it, like a starving wolf goes 
after his prey. Though I have been ill more than 
four weeks, yet I have not entirely wasted my time. 

You informed me that you should send me up to 
Andover next fall to study theology for two years. 
When I left Andover you told me I should study two 
years in Amherst and a year in Andover. But I 
have been in Amherst a year longer than your fixed 
tune, though in my sorrow I have wasted nearly the 
latter half part of this year by being sick so much. 
Now you are willing to support me two years more in 
Andover. It is a great offering to me indeed. I do 
not know how I could get along without it in my 
study. I appreciate your kindness very deeply in my 
heart, and hope indeed that your offering for me would 
be very productive hereafter. 



DURING the latter half of his last year in Amherst 
Neesima was again attacked by inflammatory rheuma- 
tism, and this illness seriously interfered with his 
studies. His health returned with the warmer weather, 
and in April he resumed his work. He took the de- 
gree of B. S. with the class of 1870, and was selected 
by his comrades to deliver the oration in the grove 
on class-day. The question of his future course of 
study was not a difficult one ; his desire to return to 
his people as the bearer of a heavenly message was 
supreme, and to this end it was decided that he should 
enter the Theological Seminary at Andover, a decision 
which gave him the greatest satisfaction. At this 
time the question was raised whether he should re- 
turn to Japan as a Japanese or an American citizen. 
It was the opinion of those of whom advice was sought 
in Kobe and Yokohama that he should be naturalized 
in the United States, that thus he might, in case of 
difficulties arising from his missionary work, secure 
the advantages of consular jurisdiction. On the 
other hand, while the treaties did not prohibit mis- 
sionary effort, it was extremely doubtful whether they 
would afford any protection in case of complaint from 
the Japanese government; nor was it probable that, 
if naturalized and thus made a foreigner in the eyes 
of the law, this fact would protect him, a native-born 


Japanese, from private malice. Events subsequently 
proved this question to be without importance ; yet it 
is interesting to note the form it assumed at this time 
in Neesima's mind. With him it was not how to 
secure the amplest protection, but how to exert the 
greatest influence. That his influence would be seri- 
ously impaired by the surrender of his rights as a 
Japanese citizen was clear. He therefore decided 
against naturalization, and, in the fall of 1870, re- 
turned to Andover to begin his theological studies. 

In the winter of 1871 he again suffered from rheu- 
matism, and was for some weeks helpless. On Jan- 
uary 10th he writes : 

" Through my sickness and pain I can have more 
sympathy with the suffering and dying Saviour, and 
by beholding Him on the cross I can bear all my 
pains and sufferings most cheerfully, rejoicingly ; 
knowing that my Master has suffered a far greater 
pain than I do now for the salvation of the lost race. 
When I profoundly think of the plan of salvation 
I almost lose myself in its beauty and grandeur. 
Though I cannot use my body now, I can exercise my 
mind. I can think, pray, and glorify God through 
my suffering. Pray for me, not simply for my ill- 
ness, but that I may be ever submissive to the will of 
my Heavenly Father." 


ANDOVEB, January 29, 1871. 

A letter which you forwarded to me last Friday is 
from my home. It brought me a sad news, that is, 
the death of my grandfather. The letter is dated on 
the 5th of last August, though his death occurred on 
the 14th of last July. 


According to my brother's brief statement of his 
case I judge he died with cholera, which is a prevail- 
ing disease in the country. He was sick only four 
days, and died without much trouble, owing to his 
old age. He was then eighty-six years old. My 
brother says he was not sorry to go, for he lived long 
enough and has seen his grandsons grow up, and 
heard of what I am doing in America. But he 
would have more satisfactorily died if he could have 
seen me once more on his last day. For he has been 
talking of me so much in his late years and anticipa- 
ting to see me with a great pleasure. Oh ! he is no 
more with his friends. He has gone without hope in 
Christ. I dare say he was a most earnest and trust- 
worthy man I ever saw among our neighbors. I 
trust God will judge him without law, for he lived 
without law. My prayers for him, and my transla- 
tions of a few precious passages in the Scriptures, 
which I sent to him some time ago, have done some 
good to his soul. When he heard the news of my 
running away from Hakodate, he was sore afraid lest 
I should fall into a trouble, but when he heard that 
I am studying in one of the best American institu- 
tions he was overwhelmed with a great joy, and recog- 
nized that the people in the United States are far 
more liberal than his own people. 

This news caused me a great grief. I would have 
broken down with a grief if I had not had my Sa- 
viour to sympathize with me in my affliction and help 
me to bear this cross. Pray for me that this afflic- 
tion may be a means to bring me closer to Christ and 
to calmly repose myself upon his arms. I have a 
still more sad news to tell you, the death of our dear 
friend, Dr. Samuel Taylor. He died suddenly in the 


Academy Hall when he went up to the morning 
prayer. May the Lord sanctify all these sad scenes 
to our souls. I suppose you and Mrs. Hardy will be 
present at Dr. Taylor's funeral, which will be on 
next Tuesday. Then let me have a pleasure of see- 
ing both of you. 


ANDOVEK, March 21, 1871. 

I saw Mori, Japanese minister sent to Washington 
from Mikado, at Boston a week ago last Wednesday. 
He told me if I write a letter to the Japanese govern- 
ment stating briefly who I am, what I have been 
studying in America, and also my intention for re- 
turning home, he will forward it to the government 
and get a passport for me. He told me also the 
present internal movement among the higher classes 
concerning Christianity. They begin to see a vast 
difference between Protestant and Catholic religions. 
Though the government forbids the people to em- 
brace Christian truth, yet I trust it will open the 
country to Protestant missionaries within a few years. 
I am afraid that Mori, the Japanese minister, will 
pay up to Mrs. Hardy for what she has expended for 
me so far, because he asked Mr. Hardy to give him 
a list of all the expenses which have been spent for 
educating me. I fear Mr. Hardy will give him its 
list, and if he receives the payment from Mori I 
shall be bound up to the Japanese government by 
that sum of money. I would rather remain a free 
Japanese citizen and consecrate myself wholly to my 
Master's business. I hope to see Mr. Hardy very 
soon and talk over the matter with him. I hope the 
Lord will give us a wise and prudent thought for 


deciding this matter. [The proposition of Minister 
Mori was promptly declined.] 


ANDOVEB, June 7, 1871. 

Three weeks ago yesterday I was invited to Amherst 
by the Japanese minister, who brought a young Jap 
anese to Mass. Agricultural College to study the 
mode of American farming. I spent two days with 
him at Amherst and had very pleasant time. He 
treated me very gentlemanly and paid all my travel- 
ing expenses. The main idea of his inviting me is 
that he was intending to establish schools at home 
after the American system and desired me to take 
charge of it. I encouraged him to do so, though I 
did not give him any definite answer for my taking 
charge of it for it is woe to me if I do not preach 
the gospel of my blessed Master. 


AMHERST, June 13, 1871. 

Since I returned here I attempted to rewrite my letter 
to the Japan government for obtaining a passport, for 
in my first letter I did not say that I have embraced 
Christian faith, but simply mentioned what I am 
studying at Andover. I did not even say that I am 
studying theology, but mentioned that I am studying 
the true secret of the progress of civilization. When 
I saw the Japan minister at Amherst I told him that 
I would not go home concealing my Christian faith 
like a trembling thief goes in the dark night under 
the fear of discovery, but go there as a Christian 
man walking in a Christian love and doing things 
according to the light of my conscience. I told him. 


furthermore, that if I write to him I would rather 
make known to government my new and healthier 
religion. But he said he did not know whether it 
would be safe for me to do so or not, but I might try 
that. But after a still more careful investigation I 
found it would not be desirable for me to make known 
my being here openly, for if I do so perhaps I will 
receive an order to do some service or to study a cer- 
tain thing. In such a case I cannot conveniently 
refuse it, for if I do the government will no longer 
be friendly. While I am studying I do not wish to 
be hindered by the government's affairs. As I under- 
stand that you are willing to keep me still longer, I 
would rather receive the Christian's willing and cheer- 
ful gift than that of the government, which will bind 
me as a slave. Yet I will try to keep up a friendly 
relation to the minister at Washington, so that when 
I get ready to go home he might be some help to me. 
So I am decided not to write to the government till I 
am about ready to go home. I used sometimes to do 
things without much circumspection, though I was 
rery successful in certain things. But with regard 
to the above case I shall be pretty careful, for my all 
future success may depend on this single action. I 
shall wait entirely on the providential guidance. 

When I came out from the prayer -meeting re- 
cently I saw a grand display of northern lights. 
While I was watching the change of streams of 
light, and also gazing upon those innumerable bright 
stars twinkling in the blue dome, I thought of the 
hymn, " Nearer, my God, to thee," and thought that if, 
through the grace of God, I am permitted to fly on 
joyful wing onward and upward, leaving the sun, 
moon, and stars behind me, how grand my feeling 
might be. 


The vacation will begin two weeks from next 
Thursday. I don't know what I should do this sum- 
mer. I am partly tempted to read or study, and 
partly to take a trip somewhere to collect the mineral- 
ogical and geological specimens. 


ANDOVEB, June 21, 1871. 

I received yours of yesterday, and am very thank- 
ful for your kindest offering for my wants for the 
vacation. I am desiring to take a trip to Niagara 
Falls, Trenton Falls, Utica, and some other places to 
collect fossils and minerals. I had an invitation from 
one of my college chums who lives near Utica to come 
there and spend a few days with him. I feel rather 
delicate to ask you to furnish my wants for going so 
far, but I also believe I shall be benefited by it very 
much, and I also expect to study geology and miner- 
alogy practically. Perhaps I may give lectures on 
Japan here and there and may get my expenses paid 


EVANS MILLS, N. Y., August 18, 1871. 
I fear you may think I have forgotten to write to 
you. But if you read on you will know the reason 
why I have not written thus far. Since I began my 
journey I have had no fixed abode, and consequently I 
have scarcely found time to sit down to write letters or 
read. When I stopped with my friends I was a kind 
of novelty to them because they have never seen any 
Japanese. I was invited out to the dinners and tea, 
and was asked by them so many questions. At the 
same time I have kept myself busy geologizing. 


When I went to any friendless places I was obliged 
to lodge at the hotels. It seemed me so painful to 
pay so much that it would not do to hang around too 
long in such places. I hastened myself to see what I 
could see, and did not stay more than necessary for 
geologizing. Thus my time has been fully occupied 
with visiting, tramping, geologizing, and occasionally 
discussing with spiritualists and infidels. I thank 
God for giving me strength to meet with all his ene- 
mies without surrendering myself to them. 

I went through the heart of New York State, 
crossed over Lake Ontario by a steamer, and am stop- 
ping with one of Andover theological students at 
Evans Mills. Oh, I wish I could have eloquence 
enough to write out all my happy and rich experi- 
ences during my trip. Notwithstanding the broken 
English and imperfect grammar, I will attempt to 
write you a brief sketch with this unskillful hand. 

After I bid a farewell to my dearest Boston 
friends, I set my face towards the west. My first 
stopping - place was Leominster, where I spent five 
days with the brother of Captain Taylor, including a 
Sabbath. I spoke for him in the afternoon service. 
It was my first attempt to address before a large audi- 
ence in a regular service, I spoke on the history of 
Japan, and recent changes and progress of the peo- 
ple, and addressed to the Sabbath-school in the even- 
ing, showing a few articles of Japan. It pleased the 
children very much. I think I got through it better 
than I expected to. My second stopping-place was 
my beloved Amherst, where I spent only two days 
and a half with Professor Seelye. I attended the 
commencement exercises and enjoyed them very much. 
My third stopping-place was Hoosac Tunnel. I went 


in from east side. The inside of it was very dark, 
damp, and chilly. I wore a woolen coat, and an oil- 
coat, in order to keep myself comfortable. I did not 
make any long stay in the tunnel lest I might be in- 
jured by the dampness and low temperature. I met 
the instructor of schoolship in Boston harbor at the 
tunnel, and accompanied him to central shaft. The 
men could not work at all in the shaft on account of 
much water, and were simply dipping out water by 
the means of steam-engine. It will be 1,030 feet deep 
when it is completed. I suppose you know all about 
the tunnel, but please let me draw for you a section 
of the mountain to illustrate the tunnel. I passed 
the night on that wild romantic mountain. I rose 
very early the next morning, breakfasted hastily, and 
left at half past four o'clock. The morning air was 
so cool and the mountain breath so very gentle, yet 
invigorating, I might take a double quick to go over 
the mountain. But the scenery was so grand, splen- 
did, and beautiful, it made me to stop my feet every 
five or ten minutes. The morning dawn awoke up 
those sleepy birds on the mountain tops to sing mel- 
ody for a lonely traveler. The white and silvery 
fog arising from every valley appeared like the Mer 
de Glace on the Alps. Although I was alone I found 
many companions round about me, on my right, left, 
above, and beneath. Everything in nature seemed to 
welcome me, and joined me in praising the Maker of 
all things. I was alone, yet not alone. 

I reached North Adams some time before six 
o'clock. I felt somewhat afraid to go to the place so 
early in the morning lest I might be taken for a 
" heathen Chinee." But I went in and came out from 
the place without any difficulty. I paid a visit to those 


Chinese in the shoe-factory. They could not speak 
English at all, except their leader Ah Sing. When I 
went in there they took me for a Chinaman, but I 
could not understand them at all. So I took out a 
piece of .paper and asked them to write down their 
questions. The first question was : What part of 
China did I come from ? My reply on the paper was i 
" I am not from China, but from Japan. I came from 
Yedo, the capital of Japan, and am studying now the 
words of God, intending to preach the crucified Sa- 
viour to my countrymen." This reply surprised them 
in no less degree. I wrote down still further about 
the love of Christ. They seemed quite intelligent, and 
one of them said Jesus Christ was the Son of God. 
I wished to converse with them still longer, but they 
could not stop their work very conveniently. I went 
through their working shop, dining-room, and sleep- 
ing-room. They still keep up their own way of living 
and use the chopstick to eat rice with. They are very 
economical. They wash and mend their own clothes 
and cultivate the vegetables for their own use. I 
think they shall not be able to make money so fast as 
some Yankees can, but will accumulate it by steady and 
gradual process. They have neither so much aspira- 
tion or patriotic feeling as some of our young Jap- 
anese have, but they are simply contented with a few 
accumulations of fhe almighty dollar. On the other 
hand, the Japanese are not very anxious of making 
money, but are always craving after the knowledge 
and ideas of the western civilization. They don't do 
it simply for themselves, but it is their intention to 
elevate and enlighten their native friends. They love 
their own country and are willing even to give up 
their own lives for her. So if they love truth they 


would stand up for it as they would for their country. 
O, may our merciful Father give us power and grace 
to bear the blessed standard of Christ on that be- 
nighted shore, and proclaim the glad news of salva- 
tion to their despondent souls. 

My fourth stopping-place was Troy, N. Y. I found 
there three Japanese students, and spent two days 
with them, including one Sabbath. They are not 
yet Christians, though they study the Bible and respect 
it as the word of God. I hope the free grace will 
cause them to be born in Christ. I had quite a talk 
with them and enjoyed it exceedingly. I stopped at 
Albany only four hours, visiting State Street, the Med- 
ical College, State Geological Room, State House, etc. 

My fifth stopping-place was Kirkland, where I spent 
two weeks with my college chum, Mr. George Suth- 
erland. Kirkland is a great centre of geological for- 
mation, and I made it a headquarters, spending many 
days in Clinton, Dansville, Oriskany Falls, Water- 
viUe, New Hartford, and Trenton Falls. Trenton 
Falls is a grand place to visit. Some people say it 
is not so sublime as Niagara Falls, but it is far pret- 
tier. The second fall is the best one. When I was 
ready to leave it began to rain quite hard. I stood in 
the rain and sketched the falls hastily. 

I am requested to speak to-morrow evening, so I 
must stop my writing and plan out what I shall speak. 


July 15, 1871. If I stayed on this hilltop several 
mornings I should be inspired by the revelation of 
wonderful nature and write at least one or two verses 
of poetry which might make my name immortal. But, 
alas, un-genious man ! I cannot compose even one 


verse on this single morning. I have no skill to de- 
scribe the grand scene with a figurative language. I 
am like a practical Yankee and my remark is woiider- 
f ully plain. I have no inspired mind or pen, as see 
the following : 

Arise, O sleepy sun. Do not tarry, lazy sun ! 
For on a top of Berkshire hills I am standing, 
Standing alone, and for thee I am waiting. 


ANDOVEB, September 17, 1871. 

Since I returned here I was intending to write you 
again, but I have been unusually busy these past two 
weeks and unable to describe to you my journey still 
farther. I had very rich experiences on my journey, 
and would be glad to narrate to you some of them, 
but I will not undertake to do if just now. On my 
return here I found a letter from my old teacher, and 
was informed by him my brother's death. He did 
not describe how he died, but simply informed me his 
death. He advised me to come home, for my father 
would be very lonely without me. Having been in- 
formed by a Japanese student who entered into Phillips 
Academy this term that there is a Japanese at Boston 
Highlands who came from Yedo very recently, and 
was once a pupil of my old teacher, accordingly I went 
to Boston about two weeks ago to see him, in order to 
ascertain by what manner or by what disease my 
brother did die. But he could not give me any infor- 
mation about his death. I stopped with that Japan- 
ese friend two days, and had very enjoyable Sabbath 
with him and Mrs. Captain Taylor. I called on Mr. 
Hardy, Jr., in State Street on Monday to get a letter 
from home which he spoke of a few days previously. 


The letter was from my father. He informed me 
more minutely about my brother's death. He was ill 
about three months and died last March. It is almost 
too painful to think of, how he died in his early age. 
It is still more painful to read my father's letter 
accompanied with his great grief and disappointment. 
It is a most shocking news to me and caused me great 
sorrow. Yet I can bear it wonderfully, for I do not 
bear it alone. I can say cheerfully and willingly, 
" Let thy will be done." I submit all my affairs to 
his hand, for He knows best and does all things for 
my good. But when I sympathize with my disap- 
pointed and comfortless parents I could hardly refrain 
myself from dropping tears. I wrote to him last 
week and sent him your own likeness. I hope it 
might be some comfort to him. It would please my 
father exceedingly if I go home immediately, but I 
feel I am no longer a property of my father. I have 
consecrated myself to my Lord, and also give myself 
up to the service of my country. If the Lord calls 
me to labor for Him in his vineyard, it is the highest 
and most honorable calling we could ever obtain on 
the earth. If the Lord desires to promote his glori- 
ous kingdom to Japan through me, a least and weakest 
vessel in his household, I will most cheerfully and hope- 
fully submit myself to his will. I have a plow on my 
hands ; I must work for my Lord. It is my earnest 
prayer for my parents that God should spare their 
lives until the light of truth and life will be preached 
to them. I thank God for what He has done for me 
always. Though I heard a sad news from home, yet 
He never does leave me comfortless. 

I received a passport from the Japanese govern- 
ment, together with a letter from my old teacher. I 


hope you will rejoice with me, because it does seem 
me that the Lord is going to make my path plain. 

I brought back quite a number of geological speci- 
mens from New York and Canada. They are my 
property. I feel quite rich now. 


ANDOVEK, September 27, 1871. 

You have asked me to give you a translation of the 
passport sent from the Japanese government. I 
think I will take the passport with me to Salem next 
week where I may expect to see you. I have several 
other papers sent to me with the passport ; I will ex- 
plain them all to you when I see you. I heard from 
my father again this morning. His letters have been 
sent to me by a private conveyance thus far, but his 
last letter came to me through the hands of the 
Japanese minister of foreign affairs. He says in his 
letter that, in the first part of last May, the govern- 
ment did send an officer to his prince to inquire 
whether there was such a man by the name of Nee- 
sima in his home who disappeared in such a time. 
He went away having ascertained everything. A few 
days after that a paper was sent to him and its con- 
tents was as follows : " It is permitted by the govern- 
ment to Neesima Shimeta to remain and study in the 
United States of America." I am sure it must have 
given my poor father a great gratification. He did 
not know thus far how I should get home safely, 
knowing that I broke the law of the country by run- 
ning away, and was expecting me to come home 
secretly as I did run away. Now he knows that I 
can go home safely and at any time, and desires me 
to come as soon as I can. He thinks 1 am ordered 


by the Japanese government to stay in America sev- 
eral years longer, and says it is to his highest honor 
that his son's name was made known to the court. 
But, says he : " Come home as soon as you can, and 
let me look at your face once more, and then I shall 
be satisfied. For I am getting old and my stay on 
the earth may not be many years. If J can see you 
once more it is enough. I shall let you go back to 
America hence to stay as long as you might. If 
your stay in America can be of some benefit to my 
country, I am willing to let you stay there until you 
can complete your study ; but please remember your 
poor father, and let him look at your face once more 
before he dies." Dear sir, it is pretty hard plead to 
me. But as you know I have a plow on my hands ; 
I cannot look back just yet. I think I will let my 
poor father wait till I will finish my study here. I 
will send to Mrs. Hardy one of my father's letters in 
which he expresses his greatest obligations to both of 
you. He says : " My language utterly fails to ex- 
press my grateful feeling towards you. I have told 
my friends, neighbors, and even strangers, that how 
you " (myself) " have fallen into the good hands in 
America, and how you are supported and educated 
by your American friends these long years. Every 
one of them who heard of your fortune, and the kind- 
ness of your friends, says there is no such thing in 
their own country." Although I krow that Mrs. 
Hardy has shown her kindness to me for her highest 
motive and worthiness, yet I hope that she will feel 
that she is somewhat rewarded by seeing my father's 
letter and receiving his greatest obligations expressed 
in it. 



ANDOVEB, November 7, 1871. 

I believe I have not written to you since I saw you 
at Salem. I suppose you know what some old-school 
men say in regard to their trying to be perfect. They 
say we shall be perfect to-morrow or some future 
time. When to-morrow comes they will say the same 
and will never be perfect. So I have been deferring 
my writing to you thus far, saying, " I will do it to- 
morrow." When the next day comes I said, " I 
must read up Edwards on the Will, and also write 
an essay for our discussion," and deferred my writing 
to some future time. I have been attending Profes- 
sor Park's lectures, and have got theory enough to be 
a new-school man, and have made up my mind to do 
or to be as T believe, that is to say : " I will do it 
now, this moment ; I will no longer defer it till to- 
morrow." Though I have nothing particular to say, 
yet I should like to inform you something about my 
study. I am attending Professor Park's lectures and 
reading along with them. It may be the hardest year 
in the seminary, because it requires so much close 
attention and thinking. My study reminds me my 
trip to White Mountains. It was rather hard for me 
to climb up the mountains, but the grandeur of sur- 
rounding scene excited my ambition and aspiration 
to go up still higher so that I might get better view 
of wondrous nature. So I have just begun to take 
my most delightful trip in the intellectual and spirit- 
ual fields. It is not my question how far my destiny 
may be, but simply go as far as I can and do as much 
my strength permits, leaving all my future in the 
hand of Him who sees all the affairs of the universe 
from the endless to the endless. 



BOSTON, February 16, 1872. 

I am requested by the Japanese minister to come 
to Washington to inform the Japanese Embassy about 
the system of American education. So I have been 
studying it since last week. It gives me plenty to do. 
I will go to Washington as soon as the Japanese Em- 
bassy arrive there. I expect to stand up for Christ 
before the heathen embassy ; I think it is a good op- 
portunity for me to speak Christ. I wish you would 
make special prayer for me, and also for the embassy. 

In 1872 the most important embassy that had ever 
left the shores of Japan visited America and Europe. 
Men of inferior rank had at various times been sent 
by the shogunate on missions of inquiry to other 
countries, but this was the first great embassy repre- 
senting the imperial government of the Mikado. It 
was composed of four cabinet ministers, of commis- 
sioners in the several administrative departments, and 
was under the conduct of one of the most distin- 
guished of Japanese nobles and statesmen,. Iwakura 
Tomomi. Accredited to the fifteen nations then in 
treaty relation with Japan, its objects were thus stated 
in the letter of credence presented at Washington : 
" The period for revising the treaties now existing be- 
tween ourselves and the United States is less than one 
year distant. We expect and intend to reform and 
improve the same so as to stand upon a similar foot- 
ing with the most enlightened nations. ... It is our 
purpose to select from the various institutions prevail- 
ing among enlightened nations such as are best suited 
to our present condition, and adopt them, in gradual 


reforms and improvements of our policy and customs, 
so as to be upon an equality with them." In its diplo- 
matic character the embassy was a failure. The 
Treaty Powers were unwilling to abandon their extra- 
territorial rights, and to commit the sole administra- 
tion of justice to a people without a civil code, to 
whom trial by jury and the writ of habeas corpus 
were unknown, and whose criminal procedure was still 
characterized by cruelty and contempt for personal 
rights. In its subsidiary quest for information on the 
political and social institutions of Christendom, the 
embassy was, however, eminently successful, and its 
return was signalized by a very remarkable series of 

Its leading members were Iwakura Tomomi, Okubo 
Toshimichi, Kido Takayoshi, Ito Hirobumi, Terashima 
Munenori, and Tanaka Fujimaro. Iwakura, the chief 
ambassador, was a Kuge or court noble, and had been 
a chamberlain of the imperial household of the father 
of the present Mikado. On the overthrow of the 
shogunate he had entered the cabinet as Minister of 
Foreign Affairs. With Kido, Ito, and Okubo, he was 
active in the movement which led to the restoration of 
the supreme authority of the Mikado. The memora- 
ble address to the Emperor, signed by the powerful 
daimios of the southwest, in which these princes re- 
signed to the crown their feudal rights, was drawn up 
by Kido, who was the head, as Saigo was the arm, of 
the imperial cause in the revolution of 1868-69. On 
their return ho/me these men occupied important posts 
in the government and took a prominent part in the 
reconstruction of the empire. Mori Arinori, at this 
time representing Japan in Washington, and the first 
Japanese to be appointed under the restoration to a 


foreign mission, had previously met Mr. Neesima at 
Ainherst, and now summoned him to Washington to 
assist Mr. Tanaka, the Commissioner of Education. 
This summons was an exceedingly fortunate one for 
Mr. Neesima, for it brought him to the knowledge of 
men who were to control in large measure the future 
policy of the government, and whose friendship in 
later years, when beset with difficulties and enemies, 
proved of the greatest value to him. He received it, 
however, with apprehension, and obeyed it with reluc- 
tance. He had previously feared that the government 
would assume his support, as it had already done in 
the case of students sent abroad by the daimio before 
the restoration, and that in so doing would also assume 
thedirection of his studies and subsequently claim his 
services. Anything which threatened his cherished 
plan to return to his native land as the free emissary 
of Christ alarmed him. He was therefore careful to 
stipulate that Mr. Mori should explain to the embassy 
that he was pursuing his studies under private au- 
spices, and that any service desired of him must be 
based upon a contract acknowledging his freedom from 
all obligation to the government. His meeting with 
the embassy, as described in the following letters, the 
dignity and modesty with which he asserted the dis- 
tinction between his own position and that of his fel- 
low-students under government patronage, and the 
zeal which, having gained his point, he displayed in 
the furtherance of Mr. Tanaka's mission, were emi- 
nently characteristic of him. Of Kido he made a 
personal friend, and he soon proved so valuable t( 
Mr. Tanaka that the latter insisted upon his accom- 
panying the embassy to Europe. This proposition 
was in many respects very attractive. The change 


would doubtless be beneficial to his health ; the oppor- 
tunities for meeting men, for studying western insti- 
tutions, for seeing the world and enlarging his horizon 
under exceptionally favorable circumstances, and, 
above all, for impressing upon the future educational 
system of Japan his own views of the relations be- 
tween education and religion, civilization and Chris- 
tianity, were unique, and would surely never recur. He 
was the channel of communication between the com- 
missioner and the world, for Mr. Tanaka then spoke no 
foreign language ; he had been requested to write a 
report on a general system of education for Japan ; 
his friends unanimously advised him to accept the 
commissioner's offer. Yet he hesitated to commit 
himself to a course which might end in his becoming 
the servant of the Mikado rather than the servant of 
Christ, and referred the question to his "American 
father " for final decision. This decision was favorable 
to his acceptance of the commissioner's offer, and he was 
thus brought into daily contact with some of the most 
influential and progressive men of New Japan. Trained 
in the Confucian philosophy, familiar from experience 
with the social and family life to which it leads, yet 
always condemning the Confucian doctrine of filial 
duty as tyrannous, he was particularly anxious that 
Mr. Tanaka should become acquainted with the life 
he had known in the Christian homes of New Eng- 
land, and during the three months passed in visiting 
the schools and colleges of the Eastern States the 
commissioner was the guest of many leading educa- 
tors and philanthropists in New York, Boston, New 
Haven, and Amherst. 

In his journal and letters Mr. Neesima alludes with 
modesty to his services to the embassy ; yet it would 


be difficult to overestimate the influence, he exerted 
through it upon the educational progress of Japan. 
In Europe, as in America, he gave all his time and 
strength to the study of the best methods of instruc- 
tion then prevailing, the organization and conduct of 
schools and institutions of learning of all grades, and 
it was on the basis of his reports that Mr. Tanaka, 
appointed on his return Vice-Minister of Education, 
laid the foundation of the present educational system 
of Japan. His personal influence also was felt by all 
associated with him ; for his character marked him 
off from all others connected with the embassy in a 
like capacity, and won for him that sympathetic 
esteem and respect which was so valuable to him in 
later life. Traveling in close companionship with 
others, he never failed in his private devotions, in his 
conscientious resolve to rest on the Sabbath, in his 
effort to speak for Christ. 


GEORGETOWN, D. C., March 8, 1872. 

I arrived at the capital safely yesterday morning 
and was cordially received by Mr. Mori. I found 
myself very tired when I arrived, therefore I did not 
go to the hotel where the embassy are, but went 
directly to the Japanese Legation and asked the min- 
ister to put me in some quiet private family. He was 
very kind to me and told me to lie down in his house, 
but I could not sleep at all for there was so much confu- 
sion. In the afternoon the American private secretary 
of the minister secured a good place for me in George- 
town only two miles from the capital, not far from his 
own house. Mr. Mori requested me to come to Arling- 
ton House this morning. I went there at the set- 


tied time and saw the Minister of Educational Bureau 
of Japan. Twelve Japanese students in the States 
were summoned to meet him to give him some advice. 
The power was granted them to make any motions or 
give any advice to him, and the motions would be car- 
ried by the vote of the majority. When they went 
in the parlor to meet him, they made the Japanese 
bow to him ; but I was behind them, standing erect at 
a corner of the room. Some time before this meet- 
ing I handed a brief note to Mr. Mori stating my 
present relation to you, and asking him to distinguish 
me from the rest. Mr. Mori stood for me very favor- 
ably, and told the Commissioner that he must not 
rank me among the other Japanese ; for I have been 
supported and educated by my Boston friends and 
have not yet received a . single cent from the Japanese 
government. So he had no right to treat me as a 
slave of the Japanese government. " At my request," 
Mr. Mori said, "Mr. Neesima came here, not as a 
bondman, but with his kindness to give you some ad- 
vice concerning education. So you must appreciate 
his kindness and willingness to do such a favor for 
you. As Mr. Neesima has such a relation to his Bos- 
ton friends, he cannot commit himself to the Japanese 
government without their consent, neither has the 
government any right to lay claim on him, or to com- 
mand to do this or that, but the things ought to be 
done by a contract between him and you. Fortu- 
nately he has three weeks' vacation, and will do some 
good service to you if you treat him as a friend. He 
is a lover of Japan, but not a slave." This speech 
pleased the commissioner exceedingly and made every 
one in the room to look at me. When he noticed me 
standing erect he asked Mr. Mori whether the corner- 


stander was Mr. Neesima. When he ascertained that 
it was he stepped forward from his seat, shook my 
hand, and made a most graceful yet most dignified 
bow to me, asking me to be a kind friend to him. 
He bowed himself 60 from the perpendicular. So I 
made like bow in return. I could not help laughing 
within my heart that a behind or corner-stander was 
so honored by him in the room. He gave me an order 
to be an interpreter to him when he goes around the 
country to examine the schools, and to tell him all 
about your school system. I told him if I am ordered 
to do this I would rather refuse it, because he should 
distinguish me from the others who received aid from 
the government ; but if I am requested to do this for a 
certain compensation, I would gladly do any favor for 
him. The commissioner told Mr. Mori to treat and 
receive me exactly as I requested of him. 

It was voted to meet to-morrow morning at 11 
o'clock. During the meeting the students made sev- 
eral motions, but I did not vote or say anything, in 
order not to place myself on the same platform of the 
rest. When the meeting was dismissed the others 
made 30 bow from the perpendicular to the commis- 
sioner, without shaking his hand. But he came to me 
and asked where I reside and requested me to call on 
him privately. He then shook my hand and made 70 
bow to me, wishing me for the improvement of my 
health. I could not help laughing at my being distin- 
guished so much among the Japanese, for I have never 
thought myself that I was something, and have always 
desired to keep myself unknown from the public. So 
when I went to the parlor I stood at a corner keeping 
myself behind the rest, standing erect and not bow- 
ing, desiring to keep my right. I am glad to say I 


kept my right and my right was granted to me, I 
wish you would rejoice with me at this triumphant 
hour, for I am a free man, a free man in Christ. 1 
could not help thanking you through whose aid and 
means I have attained this liberty. I know your 
prayers have been answered now, but pray on still. I 
do not care for the esteem of men, but only wish to 
remain a humble child of God. 

I suppose you would not object of my spending 
this vacation with the embassy, if I take a good care 
for my health. I have not seen Iwakura, the chief 
ambassador, but had a pleasant interview with his 
secretary, who was a friend of two of my best Japan- 
ese friends at home, and found out all about them. 

My boarding-house is very near where some Japan- 
ese girls are staying for the present. I saw two of 
them yesterday. One of them is about fifteen years 
of age, and another is only eight years old, the second 
daughter of my old schoolmate, who is now a prom- 
inent officer in the country. She is a little cunning 
and acute thing I ever saw. I had very pleasant 
conversation with them and dined with them too. 
They don't understand what the ladies in the families 
speak to them ; so when I go there to see them they 
are delighted to see me, and ask me ever so many 
questions. They feel so friendly to me, and are not 
afraid to ask me questions, for I told them I shall be 
very sorry if they do hesitate to ask me anything. 
Though I do not preach to them, yet I am teaching 
them some moral principle in a pleasant way. So I 
think they would not take me as a lover of girls, 
though I call on them so often, but a kind instructor, 
because they make such graceful Japanese bow each 
time when I speak to them. I am so thankful that 
I can do some service to them. 



GEORGETOWN, March 10, 1872. 

Yesterday morning I went to the legation to attend 
the meeting of the Japanese students. I found there 
the twelve who were summoned to Washington. 
They are divided into two parties. One half of them 
is called the upper party, and another half the lower 
party. As I had obtained, or rather kept up my 
right, to remain a free Japanese citizen, the Com- 
missioner of Education and Mr. Mori agreed to hire 
me during my vacation and pay me so much for my 
service to them. I at once accepted it, because I 
thought you would not find any objection to my do- 
ing so. The object of our meeting is to make stat- 
utes for the Japanese students who are supported by 
the government in the foreign countries. I am a 
member of the upper party. You must know I am 
a free member, and can withdraw myself from it at 
any time. Several topics for discussion were given 
out by Mr. Mori. The parties divided the topics 
and met in different rooms to discuss their own 
topics. This morning we met together and brought 
our separately discussed topics into the general as- 
sembly. The commissioner was appointed our chair- 
man, but he did not appear this morning. I rather 
suspect that he is somewhat afraid of us, because we, 
the students in this country, are the true democratic. 
We do not hesitate to say anything. Last Saturday 
we made a petition to the chief ambassador to grant 
us a power to make a statute by the vote of majority, 
and when it is passed we may order it even to the 
Commissioner of the Educational Department. So 
we have more power of making statutes pertaining to 


students in the foreign countries than the minister 
himself. The topics discussed to-day may not inter- 
est you much, therefore I will not write you about 
them. My principal mission is to write an essay on 
" The Universal Education of Japan." I think it is 
a most important mission. It will be handed to the 
embassy and probably may be some service for open- 
ing the country to the light of truth and life. Pray 
for this untiring soldier of the blessed cross, for I feel 
my active battlefield has come within my sight. I 
am ready to march forward, not asking whether my 
powder is dried or not, but trusting simply and be- 
lieving only that the Lord of Hosts will help me to 
'do my duty. 

Mr. Mori is ever friendly to me. 


GEORGETOWN, D. C., March 15, 1872. 

This is the very first time here I see the clear blue 
sky and bright sunshine. I am feeling quite cheerful 
and stronger than ever before since my arrival here. 

I went to the Legation this morning, to attend the 
meeting of the Japanese students. I stayed there 
some time to hear them speak, but their view was 
entirely impracticable, and I was not interested in 
such child's play at all. I excused myself before the 
meeting was dismissed and called on Mr. Eaton, the 
Commissioner of Education, who promised the Jap- 
anese commissioner to take him to a private female 
school only a short distance from his office. Then 
Mr. Eaton accompanied us, the Japanese commis- 
sioner, his two under-officers, and myself, to the 
school. Mr. Eaton introduced us to the lady teacher 
and then gave us seats. Very soon the exercises be- 


gan. One young lady was called up to read poetry, 
not only for us but as one of the exercises in the 
examination. She stood very gracefully and read it 
wonderfully well. Then they were examined on al- 
gebra. I do not think they were remarkably bright 
on algebra. After this was done another young lady 
was called up and read prose. She read it very well 
too. After the examination was over Mr. Eaton gave 
our cards to those young ladies. The names amused 
them very much. 

After I had taken the noon lunch I called on Gen- 
eral Babcock. He told me he had an American in- 
terpreter, and also finds several English - speaking 
individuals among the embassy, and as I have a 
hand full of work for the Japanese Commissioner 
of Education he would not call upon me for any 
service. He said also he would be very glad to in- 
troduce me to the President, but unfortunately he is^ 
out to-day. He asked me to call again, and sent an 
order to the usher to show me all the rooms and con- 
servatory of the White House. I called on Rev. 
Mr. Rankin and had very pleasant conversation. He 
is an old Andover graduate and was glad to see one 
who came from the same seminary. He invited me 
to attend his service to-morrow. Thence I went to 
the Patent Office. I was perfectly bewildered by the 
grand sight of the collection. I did not take much 
pains to examine it, but simply went around and got 
some idea of wonderful Yankee ingenuity. I went 
to the office and obtained the last report. 

I am thinking now to invite the Commissioner of 
Education to Mr. Rankin's Sunday-school. I sup- 
pose he will go there because he is so anxious of 
seeing the American institutions. The commissioner 


is very well educated man in our way and well ac- 
quainted with my old teacher. He feels very friendly 
to me and wished me to go to Europe with him to 
examine their school system. He knows my health 
is rather poor and advises me to take a short trip to 
Europe. He says if I should go there with him he 
would pay all my expenses and give me certain com- 
pensation for services. He would treat me as his 
friend, not as his under-officer, and would give me 
leave to return to America at any time. He says he 
would go to Europe as soon as he gets through visit- 
ing the schools in the North, and would start before 
the embassy proper, and take pains to examine the 
systems of England, France, and Germany. I told 
him plainly all my history, what poor fellow I was 
when I arrived at Boston ; to what kind hands I have 
fallen ; how I have been supported. I told him espe- 
cially my great obligation to you, and that I am your 
minor and cannot decide on the matter without con- 
sulting with you. He was much pleased with my 
narration and wished me to write you soon as possible 
to get your advice, or rather permission. Mr. Mori 
told me the same thing some time ago. He says it 
is my choice ; I can either accept or refuse. The em- 
bassy will respect me as a free Japanese citizen. He 
thinks it is a rare opportunity. I spoke it to several 
individuals here ; they say it is my golden opportunity. 
I am much perplexed with this free and rare offering, 
and almost inclined to go to spend this spring and 
summer in Europe for my health, and also for widen- 
ing my information. As I said before, I am your 
minor. I would not do anything unless I get your 
approval or consent. Please make consideration with 
your wisdom and sagacity and tell me what I shall do. 


Sunday. The snowstorm has prevented me to go 
to Washington to attend Rev. Mr. Rankin's church 
this morning, so I went a nearest meeting-house I 
could find here, which was Methodist church. The 
service was very quiet and impressive. I was much 
pleased with the sermon. It was an extempore and 
simple sermon, yet very persuasive. It is very much 
different from the reading some cold and philosophi- 
cal discourse which is spun out from some intellectual 
head, but not from warm pious heart. 

Mr. Tanaka, the Commissioner of Education, re- 
quests me to move to Washington so that he might 
see me of tener. I think I will do so some tune this 


GEORGETOWN, D. C., March 19, 1872. 

I visited the Patent Office and Smithsonian Insti- 
tution with the Japanese Commissioner of Education 
to-day. Very kind attention was given us by the offi- 
cers of the buildings, so we had better opportunity to 
see them than common visitors. After we got through 
visiting those places the under-officers returned to 
their boarding-places, but Mr. Tanaka invited me to 
dine with him. It was some time beyond my lunch 
hour, so I gladly accepted his invitation and dined 
with him at Arlington House. After the dinner I 
went to his room and spent nearly three hours in con- 
versation on the subject of national education. I did 
not speak to him on the subject of religion thus far, 
but I could no longer keep down my burning zeal. I 
gradually poured out my humble opinion on the na- 
tional education. It is impossible to write and give 
you all the idea that I spoke to him, but only in a 


condensed form. A nation or an individual shall 
need to be intelligent in order to be a good citizen. 
An intelligent citizen can be governed much better 
than an ignorant. But his intellect is not sufficient 
to control himself morally. If he has intellect only, 
and has not the moral principles, he will do more 
harm to his neighbor and society, than do them good. 
His sharpened intellect will be very much like a sharp 
knife. He may ruin his fellow creatures and also 
destroy himself. If such a ruinous person exert such 
a bad influence among his society, the hundreds and 
thousands of such will surely cause the ruin of a 
nation. Therefore there must be a moral principle to 
keep down such a ruinous intellect, for if a person 
has moral principle he can make right use of his intel- 
lect. Therefore the Japanese government must pro- 
vide some means, or allow some person, to teach moral 
principles to the people. Education only is not suffi- 
cient to make men virtuous ; neither intellectual nor 
moral philosophy is enough for it. I never knew any 
persons become virtuous by studying the philosophy 
of Plato or books of Confucius. But on the other 
hand there is a power in the Christian religion to 
make men free, vigorous, and virtuous. If a man 
loves virtue he indeed is a true man and does know 
how to take care of himself. If each Japanese knows 
how to take care of himself, the government shall not 
need setting detectives here and there throughout the 
country. If the whole nation love truth and virtue 
they will govern themselves, nor give or cause much 
trouble to the government. The strength of a nation 
is the strength of their virtue and piety. Some peo- 
ple make use of the Christian religion as a mere in- 
strumentality, but if so his religion is not a true one. 


There is truth in the Christian religion. We ought 
to take truth because it is truth, and not as a mere 

Then the commissioner told me that what I said 
concerning the education and religion agrees with his 
view very much except one point. He said he knew 
something of Christianity, and has begun to appre- 
ciate its goodness and value more and more since he 
came to this country, seeing so plainly what the Chris- 
tian people are doing here. He is almost awe-struck 
with the schools, churches, and some charitable insti- 
tutions supported by the Christian people or societies. 
Then he thought Christianity one of the best instru- 
mentalities to govern a people or elevate a nation; 
but he said, " I do not know enough to say that we 
ought to love truth because it is truth, and not use 
it as a mere instrumentality." 

As he said, he does not know truth enough. He is 
anxious to know of it to a fuller extent. He says 
the government has no right to interfere in any form 
of religion, for belief in any religion is in the heart 
and not in outward deeds. The duty of the govern- 
ment is to keep the people in good order, and it ought 
to let the religion be free to the people. Let them 
worship true God or heathen gods according to their 
consciences. If there is truth or goodness in one 
religion more than the others it will prevail after all. 

I was exceedingly pleased with broad view on this 
subject, and felt so thankful for this new opening 
way to speak so freely. The commissioner is going 
to visit a deaf and dumb school to-morrow, but he 
gave me leave to rest myself, because he has one more 
Japanese interpreter beside me. He is very anxious 
to know whether you will permit me to go to Europe 


with him or not. I did not say much on the matter, 
only that I must depend on the decision of my 
patrons in Boston. If this is only opportunity for 
me to go I would rather do so and with Mr. Tanaka, 
for he is such a man of broad view. I may possibly 
do him some good, especially for promoting Christ's 
kingdom in Japan. If I do show him some favor, 
he might become a great help for my further labor. 
Please let me hear from you as soon as you can. 


GEORGETOWN, D. C., March 20, 1872. 

I wrote you this evening asking for your decision 
on my visiting Europe with the Commissioner of Ed- 
ucation of Japan. Some time after mailing it I was 
carefully thinking of the subject, looking not simply on 
one side, but the other. I may be of some use to Mr. 
Tanaka, but if I become useful to him he may possi- 
bly lay a snare to catch and take me back to Japan, 
and make use of me for the educational purposes. If 
I once connect myself with the government I shall be 
its slave. Though I may do some good in doing so, 
yet it is not my predominant choice to commit myself 
to the hand of the government. I have already recog- 
nized the Sovereign King, the Saviour, as my lord and 
government, and shall not need any other government. 
Therefore it would be my best policy to keep myself 
free from the snares of the Japanese government. 
They may keep good terms with me ; they may invite 
me with a word like honey, and treat me as a hired 
servant at first, and then they may gradually lay hold 
of me. I believe the commissioner is a perfect gentle- 
man and would not treat me treacherously. Yet what 
I ha^e said above is my Yankee speculation. There 


is some danger and tendency of my trusting in other 
persons too soon, not thinking deep enough. But in 
regard to my future steps I must be pretty cautious. 
I must do what is noble, right, and true. As I have 
consecrated myself to the work of my Master, I must 
try to seek opportunity to discharge my duty to Hun 
and my benighted fellow-creatures. I would rather 
preach or teach truth which is in Christ Jesus with 
the bread of affliction than to do any other things 
with the earthly luxuries, pleasures, and honors. Then 
the question is, What would be most advisable for me 
to do ? It is a grand opportunity for me to visit Eu- 
rope now. It is rather a sacrifice for me not to go. 
But though I may not go there yet I shall not lose 
very much, because I shall study theology at Andover. 
It is very hard matter to decide. Please give me 
your advice and guidance. If you say no, I will 
cheerfully obey your advice ; and if you say go, I 
shall not decide it at once. 

The Commissioner of Education of Japan will be 
in Boston within two or three weeks to visit the fa- 
mous schools in the city. Will you be kind enough 
to notify his coming to the city, and to those schools 
which you may think worth while for him to visit. 
If you do me this favor it will also be much gratify- 
ing to Mr. Tanaka. 



GEORGETOWN, D. C., March 22, 1872. 

I am greatly obliged to you for your kind consent 
to my request for my accompanying the Japanese Em- 
bassy to Europe. Since I wrote you on this subject 
I have been carefully and prayerfully considering on 
the question, but I could hardly know what should be 


the guidance of Providence. Your last letter gave 
me a clear decision, and made me feel and think that 
it may be a voice, not human, but from on high, to 
open the way to my active life or Christian labor. 
Though I do expect only to accompany him for a short 
time, yet I may possibly do some service for promot- 
ing Christ's kingdom in his heart, hence to Japan. 
So I would no longer doubt or hesitate, but say I will 
go wherever the Lord will direct me and do what I 
can for honoring and glorifying Hun. When I wrote 
you my last letter I was almost inclined to refuse the 
Commissioner's offer and resume my study at Ando- 
ver. But all my Japanese friends have encouraged 
me to go ; Mr. Mori advised me to go, and Mr. Lan- 
man, his American Secretary, told me not to lose such 
a golden opportunity. Professor Seelye told me " bet- 
ter go," and lastly you, whom I regard more than my 
own parents, gave me a consent to go. I will simply 
say " Thy will be done." 

I am sure it will be gratifying to Mr. Tanaka, for 
he has been anxiously waiting for your reply since I 
wrote you my first letter on this subject. When I 
see him I will ask him to give me a note of stipula- 
tion to send me back to the United States before next 
September, or whenever I get tired of traveling, and 
will keep it as the sign of agreement. 

I accompanied Mr. Kido, vi%e-ambassador, Mr. 
Tanaka, and General Eaton, and four other Japanese, 
to Columbia College yesterday morning, and had very 
enjoyable time, though it was busiest day I ever have 
had since I came here. I kept up talking partly 
in Japanese, partly in English, from 9 A. M. till 5 
P. M. It was long eight ho irs' pulling. We returned 
to Arlington House at half past eight. Mr. Kido 


invited General Eaton, my fellow - interpreter, and 
myself to dine with him in the room reserved for the 
chief ambassadors. I was sorry no blessing was 
asked when we commenced our dinner. 

Mr. Kido is one of the strongest men in Japan, and 
has taken most prominent part in the last revolution 
of Japan in overthrowing despotic government of the 
Shogun, and establishing the new, healthier, and lib- 
eral government of the Mikado. His manner is very 
gentlemanly and agreeable. I had quite a chat with 
him at the table and behaved myself just as if I was 
talking with my fellow-students at the club of Ando- 
ver. I have been resting to-day for preparing myself 
for the coming Lord's day ; for if I overdo to-day I 
shall not be able to enjoy the service of the Sabbath. 

We are going to leave Washington next week to 
visit the schools of Philadelphia and New York, and 
we may possibly reach the Hub of the universe within 
three weeks. 


WASHINGTON, D. C., March 28, 1872. 

v Since I wrote you my two last letters I have made up 
my mind to accompany Mr. Tanaka to the Old World. 
I am so grateful for your kind consent and best wishes 
for my success. I would not go abroad unless I feel 
it may be good opportunity to promote Christ's King- 
dom to the heart of heathen nobleman and Japan. 
Mr. Tanaka is trying to finish visiting the schools and 
institutions so as to leave Washington within five days. 
He is quite anxious of seeing and knowing the .good 
American family life and wished me to inquire you 
whether you could find some private family at Boston 
where he could see and learn the true American life. 


He has thus far stopped at the hotels. He told me 
also he does not care for seeing the grand style of 
American living, but the true national character. It 
is too much to ask you to accommodate Mr. Tanaka 
and your humble servant during our stay in Boston. 
If you could do it without causing you much inconven- 
ience I am sure it will do him a great good. I have 
been telling him what you have done for me these 
seven years, since I began to room with him at the 
hotel. He is quite anxious to see you. I will leave 
the matter in your hands entirely. Please do it as 
you please and think the best to satisfy his wants. I 
think Mr. Tanaka is sharp enough to see the true 
pride and glory of America. 

I believe that I have forgotten to inform you that I 
was requested by Mr. Mori to be present when Mr. Nor- 
throp had his first interview with the embassy. Mr. 
Mori asked many questions to Mr. Northrop concerning 
the national and universal education, for the embassy, 
and I took notes of Mr. Northrop's plain and practi- 
cal talking. Although I have not had much inter- 
view with the whole embassy, yet I am very well 
acquainted with Mr. Kido, who is the ablest man 
among them and the great friend of the universal 
education. I have seen him very often and told him 
my humble opinion concerning the national education. 
I told him it ought to be based on virtue. I am now 
at the hotel with Mr. Tanaka and have splendid op- 
portunity to talk with him on the subject of true edu- 
tioh, i. e., the education of Soul. He was deeply im- 
pressed with my humble opinion a few nights ago and 
told me that all religions should be free, and the Bible 
should be studied by each student, not as a text-book, 
but a virtuous food. He could not yet see or say 
spiritual food. 


March 29th. Yesterday Mr. Northrop, his daugh- 
ter, and her friend Miss Page, accompanied us to Mt. 
Vernon. The weather was quite smoky in the morn- 
ing, but the report of the weather said " fair," so we 
had much courage to start on our pilgrimage to Amer- 
ican Mecca. While we were approaching the sacred 
spot the smoke was getting gradually cleared off and the 
sky was bluer and fairer. The breeze on the river was 
quite agreeable and charming. Finally we landed with 
hundred or more of our fellow-visitors. It was some 
time after one o'clock, so we sat on the front piazza of 
the general's home and took our lunches, which Mrs. 
Dr. Parker furnished for us. It tasted much better 
than splendid dinner which I had with embassy at 
Arlington House. After the lunch we went round 
the house and all the rooms. I saved a few leaves of 
that famous magnolia tree. Now I can proudly say 
that I have visited the Capital of the great republic 
and the tomb of the Father of Liberty. 

We shall leave Washington next Monday. Will 
you be kind enough to drop a line to Professor Tay- 
lor to inform him what I am doing here and get ex- 
cuse from him for my not coming back to the Semi- 
nary. May the Lord help me to keep myself very 

Since we left Washington I am rooming with Mr. 
Tanaka. I have kept up my morning and evening 
devotions in his presence. I become Sunday-school 
teacher to him. Of course he cannot reacl English 
Scriptures, but he has a copy of Chinese New Testa- 
ment ; he reads it in Chinese and I read it in English, 
and explain to him what he could not understand. 


Though he is not a professor of religion, yet he is 
almost Christian in his heart. I trust God will bless 
my humble labor in a near while. Grace of God may 
save him from heathen darkness and make him a 
great instrumentality to promote his kingdom to 




NEW HAVEN, April 30, 1872. 

Since we left Boston we have been just busy as we 
were in Boston. When we reached Amherst we tried 
to stay in Amherst Hotel, but Professor Seelye came 
after us and would not suffer us to stay there. He wel- 
comed us to his home and gave us very kind attentions. 
Professor Seelye and President Clark took us to Hoi- 
yoke Seminary in his carriage last Wednesday, and Mr. 
Tanaka enjoyed our visit there exceedingly. President 
Clark also took us to the Agricultural College and 
showed us what he has there. On Thursday we spent 
most 'of our time in Amherst 'College. On Friday we 
attended experiments on optical instruments, and on the 
same afternoon we were invited by Professor Seelye 
and Dr. Hitchcock to visit the Northampton Institute. 
The new method of teaching deaf and dumb was most 
marvelous thing I ever saw. The dumb can speak. 
We bid farewell to Amherst last Saturday and ar- 
rived in the City of Elms on the same afternoon. 
We went to the New Haven House and had a long 
rest until the evening. I called on Mr. Northrop, 
but he removed somewhere, and his new house could 
not easily be found. So I gave it up and thought I 
should wait until next morning. But he came after 
us with carriage the same evening and took us to 
President Porter's house. We did not expect to find 


such kind hospitable friends everywhere. Mr. Tana- 
ka sends his kindest regards to all, and also much 
thanks for your hospitality. 

May 2d. I am in a great hurry and can scarcely 
think of what I am writing you, being so tired of 
visiting so many schools, and also horrified with the 
idea of my going to visit so many more places. Mr. 
Northrop is a most hasty gentlemen I very seldom 
meet. He crowd up a great deal within a short space 
of time. You may be interested to know how much 
we have seen during our brief stay in New Haven. 
Monday we visited Yale College, Cabinets, History 
and Art Gallery, and Sheffield Scientific School. 
Tuesday we visited Deaf and Dumb Asylum, one 
high school, Brown School, Insane Asylum in Hart- 
ford, one normal school in New Britain and State 
Reform School, and silver and gold plating factory in 
Meriden. Wednesday we were guests to the inaugu- 
ration ceremony of the new governor of the State, 
riding in an open carriage nearly four hours. To-day 
we visited three public schools in this city. It has 
been pretty hard pull since we came here. Mr. 
Northrop is such a busy man and would not give us 
time to think. Though we have planned to leave 
New Haven for New York this afternoon, we are still 
detained by Mrs. Porter. She has been so anxious 
that we should take some rest before we go, and has 
persuaded us to remain here one day more. So I can 
have this afternoon for myself quietly and feel thank- 
ful to her for detaining us one day longer. President 
Porter is making a list of books for me which may 
be useful for my future labor, and has given us letters 
of introduction on prominent English gentlemen. 

Since we were invited to your house we have found 


friends here and there, and feel so thankful to you 
for your first opening the pleasant home for us. It is 
so pleasant for me to be in such a Christian family as 
President Porter's. I am glad Mr. Tanaka had a good 
opportunity to see so many Christian families, and 
the ways and modes of Christian living. 

When I left your home I was thinking to speak to 
you a great many things, and to express my innumer- 
able thanks for your parental care and unceasing 
love to this poor and helpless runaway boy. After I 
was sitting at the dinner-table that afternoon, all my 
past life, my leaving home, my works during the voy- 
age, my finding Mr. Hardy, and your unceasing kind- 
ness ever since, was reviewed in my mind just as the 
dishes and plates on the table were set before me. I 
felt so thankful for the kind providence of God as to 
lead me to you, the spiritual mother, and also I was 
so affected by the sense of gratitude I became en- 
tirely speechless. It may be the unfailing decrees of 
the Infinite Father that I should be sent to you, be 
cared for and educated by you for a special purpose, 
though I shrink with the idea of my littleness and 
unworthiness. So it is my constant cry to Him to 
guide, guard, and strengthen this untiring soldier. 

New York, May 6th. Through Professor Seelye's 
effort we are received at Mr. William Booth's house. 
His father, Mr. W. A. Booth, took us yesterday morn- 
ing to Mr. Stewart's store, Bible House, and Cooper 
Institute, and in the afternoon to Five Points, News- 
boys' Lodging House, and the Times Office. 

Dr. Booth, a brother of W. A. Booth, dined with 
us last evening, and we had a very interesting conver- 
sation with him. 

I am glad to say that Mr. Tanaka is impressed with 


the result of Christian education by his visiting so 
many charitable institutions since we were in Boston. 
He does kneel now at the morning prayer with Mr. 
Booth's family, though I said nothing to him about 
his position of worship. I think he has an instinctive 
reverence to the Infinite Father. He is always re- 
membering your kindness and wishes me to send you 
his kindest regards. Please let me hear from you be- 
fore you sail for Europe, and I will try to write you 
once more before next Saturday. 

I have been working just hard as my strength 
permits, for I dislike to leave things in a half way. 
I have written many letters for Mr. Tanaka. 

Good-by and also good-night to you all. 





I RECEIVED your very last letter on the steamer 
just before we left Jersey City. Through Providen- 
tial care we are still permitted to enjoy the running 
cup of blessing on the great deep, and are hoping to 
reach Queenstown at midnight. During the 12th, 
13th, 14th inst., we met dense fogs more or less, but 
after we passed by the banks of Newfoundland we 
have been free from fogs, although we met frequent 
rains. During last three days we are facing to head 
wind all the way, though she is sailing twelve or thir- 
teen miles per hour. This hard struggling against 
head wind gives very unpleasant motions to the 
steamer, confining Mr. Tanaka to his berth. As for 
me I am like an old Jack, so called among seamen. I 
have been enjoying good appetite and sleeping well 
every night; I have also been enjoying good company 
on deck ; for instance, Rev. Mr. Porter of Lexington, 
his friends Mr. and Mrs. Goodwin, Prof. Charles 
Elliot of Chicago, and some other English gentlemen. 
During the voyage I have noticed a strange thing, i. e., 
that everybody on board drink something, some sort 
of liquors, which*! abhor with all my soul. Gentle- 
men, ladies, even D. D.'s, have something before them. 
As for me I shall not take it as long as the water is 
wholesome and drinkable. 


I write this brief note to you hoping simply to in- 
form you our safe voyage thus far. I think we shall 
remain in Glasgow and Edinburgh only a few days, 
and will try to meet you in London within a fort- 


EDINBURGH, June 3, 1872. 

Supposing that you have just reached London, I 
will write you this brief note to inform you how we 
are getting along in Scotland. As you may have un- 
derstood by my hist letter we touched at Queenstown 
two weeks ago to-day and to-morrow will be our third 
Tuesday since we arrived at Liverpool. We did not 
find any trouble in landing at Liverpool, for the Cus- 
tom House Officers were very civil to us. They did 
not inspect our luggage at all, and moreover one of 
them accompanied us to our hotel. Staying there 
only one day and a half, we took our first trip in Eng- 
land to an awful smoky city, Manchester, where we 
had very pleasant interview with the Bishop of Man- 
chester and obtained a great deal of information on 
the English education. We were very much pleased 
with his politeness to the Orientals and also very 
sound advice on our future steps. 

We left Manchester a week ago hist Friday for 
Glasgow, but finding the journey rather wearisome 
we stopped at Carlisle for the night. On the follow- 
ing morning Mr. Tanaka had not courage to get up, 
finding himself very tired ; so I did leave him alone 
and took a walk on a little busy street, a long street. 
Fortunately I discovered an old castle standing on an 
abrupt hill at the outskirt of the city. What inviting 
view it was to a lonely walker. I went up there and 


was kindly received by the guardmen. On top of 
rampart I had the whole view of city. If your little 
grandson Sherburne was with me he might undoubt- 
edly have said, "It is splendid." 

We stopped at Glasgow only a few days. Mr. 
Tanaka works hard as ever and we are getting along 
nicely in our business. We start for London to-mor- 
row, and are hoping to see you with a great pleasure. 


LONDON, June 8, 1872. 

Yours of the 3d inst. was received yesterday at 
Barings. I have been very anxious to know of your 
arrival for some time, and am so glad that you have 
arrived safely at Cork. We had a very pleasant time 
at Edinburgh, and get along splendidly in visiting 
schools. We were very much pleased with the Scotch 
character, especially the people of Edinburgh. They 
are truly the Bostonians of the British Empire. 

We had very serious time procuring our hotel in 
London, riding around the city from 8.30 P. M. till 
11 P. M. Finally we got in Golden Hotel, Charing 
Cross. There was only one single room, so they emp- 
tied a drinking room for us, and its bedstead con- 
sisted of one sofa and three chairs. The day before 
yesterday we called on Mr. Donald Matherson, who 
is a great friend of Rev. Charles Douglas, a mission- 
ary in China some time ago, and whom we met at the 
great Assembly in Edinburgh. He was very attentive 
to us and procured us lodging in a private family for 
our temporary abode until we may find a still better 
place. I am getting quite tired for visiting schools 
so constantly since we arrived at Liverpool. Every- 
thing comes upon my shoulder, even for keeping up 


accounts. Mr. Tanaka is perfectly a gentleman, but 
does not know how to count English money. We 
expect to remain in London three or four weeks, and 
I hope to shake your hand once more on this side of 

I made a loudest Macedonian cry to Dr. Mullens to 
send a few missionaries to Hakodate where no Protes- 
tant missionaries are, but only a Russian Greek priest 
to whom I used to teach the Japanese language just 
before I ran away from that port. I told Dr. Mul- 
lens this cry does not come to him in his dream, but 
with a living voice and personal appeal of a represen- 
tative of that benighted nation. I left my photograph 
to him, writing a portion of Romans 16 : 9. Pray fo* 


MACON, July 21, 1872. 

It does seem a long while since our separation, 
though it was only a week and six days ago. We ar- 
rived in Paris safely last Wednesday via Dover. It 
was rather trying to Mr. Tanaka. He was very sick 
notwithstanding a calm weather. When we came to 
Paris we were very much struck with the fine streets 
and beautiful buildings, but felt pity with the people 
who take so much pain for the outward show and vain 
glory, but are neglecting the soul's culture. 

We left Paris for Geneva yesterday. Finding the 
journey rather tiresome, we stopped in this place last 
night, intending to take the early express train for 
Geneva this morning. When I started from Paris 1 
thought it was Friday instead of the last day of week. 
But finding this Sunday I refused to travel to-day, 
though Mr. Tanaka was wishing me to go to Geneva 


with him this morning. I told him I cannot consci- 
entiously travel on the Sabbath. Wherever I may be 
I must halt on the Sabbath to rest my soul on the 
Lord, except some unavoidable case. So Mr. T. 
could not urge me to travel with him to-day and went 
to Geneva with his French-speaking Japanese, asking 
me very politely to excuse him for his not staying with 
me here. So I am left alone in this strange place, 
although I do not feel lonesome at all. I went to 
the French Protestant church this morning, but I did 
not understand the preaching. I knew only that the 
preacher was earnest by hearing his exciting voice and 
noticing his constant gesture. The congregation was 
very small, about twenty ladies, five gentlemen, and a 
few boys and girls. Although the ladies dressed not 
very neatly and the gentlemen dressed with frocks like 
butchers, they appeared very attentive during the ser- 
vice ; I trust that they were rich in the inward per- 
son, though poor in their apparel. 

There is no single cloud in the sky, and the sun is 
shining brightly on the blue and tranquil stream of 
the Saone. I am so thankful for God's giving me 
such a privilege and freedom as to worship Him ac- 
cording to my conscience amongst strangers, without 
any fear or disturbance. I find the French keeping 
of Sabbath very different from New Englanders. The 
men and boys are fishing along the banks of the 
Saone, and the women wash the clothes here and 
there. All the drinking saloons are opened as it were 
some week day. So I can at once discriminate the 
Koman Catholic people from the Protestant nations. 



BERLIN, August 6, 1872. 

Since writing you from Macon I have been to Ge- 
neva, Berne, and Zurich, and arrived here last night 
via Augsburg and Leipzic. We leave for St. Peters- 
burg this evening and may possibly remain in Russia 
for a week. Then we will return and begin to study 
the Prussian system of education. As yet we have 
only called on our Japanese friends here. We unex- 
pectedly met Mr. Sears in the street. I was very 
glad to find him and learn something of you. Thus 
far I have been moving from one place to another, but 
after I get back from Russia I shall engage to a hard 
study. Another Japanese who speaks German is 
added to our party and will go with us to St. Peters- 
burg. Mr. Tanaka feels quite proud for having three 
Japanese with him who would individually speak Eng- 
lish, French, and German. He remarked to-day that 
he can go round the world without any difficulty with 
three of us. I think I am of little use to him on the 
Continent, for the English is very little spoken here, 
but why he desires to have me go with him is that I 
should study the European systems of education and 
see the operations in the schools myself. The three 
of us have been getting along without slightest diffi- 
culty among ourselves. The others say nothing 
against my religious faith and observances. Although 
they pay some respect to Christian institutions, yet 
they have not drank in the rich cream of truth which 
we can obtain only by coming to the tender and for- 
giving Saviour. As Mr. Tanaka is somewhat hasty 
person, he does very often travel on the Sabbath when 
it is convenient to him, especially to save tune. I 


have not said anything to him against it, but always 
I halt on the Sabbath whether in the city or country. 
I have already explained to him the reason. I have 
attended the English services at Berne and Zurich, 
but I am sorry to say that the preachings did not sat- 
isfy me at all. They spend over an hour for services, 
and about fifteen minutes for sermons. Their dis- 
courses are somewhat cold and lifeless. 

Since I left France water does not agree with me at 
all. So I have made a new resolution, to take some 
diluted wines or beer until I may be accustomed to 
water in any new place. As I have been long ab- 
staining from any sort of liquors, I am very easily af- 
fected by a few swallows, which is rather trying to my 
old Puritan principle. 

ST. PETERSBURG, August 10. 

Two of our party who are influenced by French 
infidels and German rationalists went out for sight- 
seeing on the Sabbath morning and hired one guide 
without consulting me. In the first place they asked 
Mr. Tanaka and myself to visit a Russian church. 
When I saw a guide coming with us I objected their 
hiring him simply for going to a church. I went to 
the finest Russian church in the city with them, fall- 
ing into their net, but soon after I inquired of that 
guide for an English or American church and asked 
him leave to let me do my way.. When I came back 
from church I found they did not accomplish very 
much ; they went to some garden, but were very much 
disappointed and disgusted with it. I found Mr. 
Tanaka reading some Christian books whole after- 
noon. I am glad to inform you he has found some 
difference between the motives of my own and the 


other Japanese. I feel more and more a heavy re- 
sponsibility is resting upon my shoulder. 


COPENHAGEN, September 3, 1872. 

We did not stay long in St. Petersburg, only five 
days; visiting there the University, a training-school, 
the Foundling Hospital, Museum, Hermitage, etc. 
The Foundling Hospital is very large building and 
can accommodate nearly 6,000 persons. There were 
800 babies under care, and all of them are only a 
few weeks old. What struck me most among the 
large collections of the Hermitage was the painting of 
the Holy Family by Raphael. St. Petersburg is very 
striking city. It is built on a grand scale. The pal- 
aces and government buildings are very extensive and 
beautiful at a distance, though some of them may 
be hardly called beautiful in the architectural view. 
The churches are also large, and the interiors of the 
cathedral and Isaac's Church are exquisitely wrought. 
They very much resemble Roman Catholic church. 
The pictures of Holy Family and relics of old saints 
are numerous and are kissed and bowed before by the 
ignorant people. The devoted Russians make regular 
Japanese bow before them and also make a double 
cross before their chests when they pray. I have a 
great sympathy with those devoted Russians, for they 
appear very earnest in their devotion, but am sorry 
that they are led away by a false method of worship 
or a false notion of doctrine. 

I must not forget to mention to you that famous 
mammoth in Museum, which was discovered in an ice- 
bank in Siberia in 1799. It is proved that it is non- 
existing creature in the present age by two main 


points ; namely, in the first place it is hairy, and sec- 
ondly its teeth are growing too close together. I saw 
its hair, kept in a glass case ; it is quite long and has 
sandy complexion. 

The people of high rank look very intelligent, and 
most of them speak at least one or two foreign lan- 
guages ; whilst the lower class of the people are very 
ignorant, very inferior in appearance, and cannot 
read even their own language. I never saw any cab- 
men reading newspapers as I used to see in the other 
European cities, but I found them always sleeping 
while they are waiting. The cabs are very heavy 
and small. The driver's dressing is also peculiar, as 
you may see in my sketch. The accommodations in 
the Russian hotel are not good at all, and the waiters 
are very slow and lazy. They never get up before 
nine o'clock in the morning, and when we want to get 
anything at that time we are obliged to touch our bell 
half a dozen times before we awake them. The chief 
business of the city seems me in the hands of the Ger- 

We came back to Berlin on the 16th ult. Finding 
all schools unopened there, we thought time may be 
better spent visiting other parts of Europe. Accord- 
ingly we started for Holland via Frankfort-on-the- 
Main. We came down the Rhine by steamer, as 
far as Rotterdam. Without stopping in that busy 
city we proceeded to The Hague, where we were 
kindly received by the Minister of Public Instruction, 
and a fine opportunity was given us to visit all schools 
in the capital. I was much pleased with the cleanli- 
ness of the school-rooms and neatness of children. 
The school system is excellent in Holland. It is open 
to all classes of the people. But the other schools 


are still better than the free ones. The American 
system is far superior to the Hollanders. In their 
public schools the Bible is entirely kept out. I rather 
suspect the Hollanders are not so devotedly religious 
as they used to be in the time of Republic. We vis- 
ited the Royal Palace and also the "House in the 
Woods," the Queen's private residence, and had there 
a fine opportunity to see the Queen. While we were 
in the ball-room she came there without giving any 
previous notice. She looked at first as if she was 
quite amazed at our appearance in that room; then 
cast her eyes down on the floor slowly, as if nothing 
happened to her. She must be over fifty years of age, 
though I could not see her face very distinctly on ac- 
count of her black veil. 

We stopped at Leyden a couple of days on our way 
to Amsterdam, and visited the University, Botanical 
Garden, a fine ladies' school, that is, a fine school 
for ladies, and museums, where we saw a large col- 
lection of Chinese and Japanese curiosities. 

At Amsterdam we were accompanied by a member 
of the Department of Public Instruction to visit all 
different grades of schools. One school is a peculiar 
one, in which youths of the working class are theoret- 
ically and practically taught particular branches of 
industry. The most striking thing in Amsterdam 
is the numerous canals and bridges. We could not 
help seeing them everywhere. We spent last Sabbath 
at Hamburg. My two companions went out to take 
walk along the harbor. Of course I could not spend 
the Sabbath as they did. I went alone to English 
Reformed Church, and listened to a very fine discourse 
by Rev. Mr. Edward, an English clergyman. 

We came to Copenhagen yesterday and called on 


the Minister of Public Instruction this morning. In 
the afternoon we went to the exposition held presently 
in the city and have spent there the whole afternoon. 
I felt very much wearied after my return, but I could 
not forget my best American friends, so I began to 
write these lines to express my greatest affection and 
respect to both of you. Allow me to assure you that 
I ever appreciate your kindness shown to me more 
and more by visiting the institutions of learning in 
Europe and finding the great value of education. I 
never can feel that I can repay to you for what you 
have done for me, but will try with my utmost power 
to conform my whole future to your chief object, that 
is to say, that I should preach the crucified Saviour in 
whatever condition I may be. I begin to see a great 
obstacle before me in the way of my preaching, for 
the most of our educated men in Japan are falling into 
the infidelity. But I am happy in a meditation on 
the marvelous growth of Christianity in the world, 
and believe that if it finds any obstacles it will ad- 
vance still faster and swifter, as stream does run 
faster when it does find any hindrances on the course. 
Oh, what pleasant thing it is that we can rely on the 
hand of the living God. He will make a great use of 
us humble vessels in his household if we simply remain 
faithful to Him. 

I wish you would render my compliments to all my 
American friends. My health is improving very 
much. I shall be always happy to hear from you. 

On the return of the commissioner to Berlin Mr. 
Neesima had again to meet under another form the 
question which had perplexed him at Washington. 
It had been his intention to resume his studies at An- 


clover in the early fall. Mr. Tanaka now announced 
his speedy departure for Japan by way of Suez and 
his earnest desire that Mr. Neesima should accompany 
him. Decision was not easy. Mr. Neesima had be- 
come an indispensable assistant, and from the nature 
of the case was of all persons most fitted to aid the 
commissioner in the important work which awaited 
his return, and to which all that had yet been accom- 
plished was but preliminary. To leave him at this 
stage of affairs would, he felt, be almost a desertion. 
Moreover, his old enemy, rheumatism, had again at- 
tacked him, and he dreaded another winter in the cold 
climate of Andover. Health is dear to all, but to 
none more so than to him who feels the burden of a 
great responsibility, to whose purposes and plans for 
work is added the conviction that he only can best 
accomplish it. It is noticeable, however, that as the 
years passed this solicitude for his health diminished. 
Always ready for self-sacrifice, the discharge of duty 
became less and less a sacrifice till, like the soldier 
when the battle is at its height, with an enthusiasm 
and devotion which the bystander may characterize as 
rashness, he forgot himself entirely and literally gave 
his life away. The real question before him was one 
of ways and means, not of end. It appears from his 
journal that even at this early date the germ of that 
idea which led to the foundation of a Christian uni- 
versity in Japan was in his mind. Feeling deeply the 
importance of Christian elements in education, should 
he go back to New England, complete his theological 
course, and return to Japan as an evangelist, or em- 
brace this rare opportunity to influence at its very 
inception the educational movement about to be inau- 
gurated there ? It was, however, by no means certain 


that Mr. Tanaka's plans, either in general or for him 
specifically, would be approved by the home govern- 
ment; and this uncertainty, together with the fear of 
becoming permanently committed to an official career, 
decided him to hold to his original intent. 

Some months intervened after Mr. Tanaka's depar- 
ture and the opening of the seminary year at Andover. 
These Mr. Neesima passed in continuing his investi- 
gation of German schools, in acquiring the language, 
and in the attempt to improve his general health by 
treatment at Wiesbaden. The persistent return of his 
rheumatism depressed him, and he was especially res- 
tive under the necessity of spending so much time in 
this pleasure-loving city. Intent always, however, 
upon his Master's service, he here made the acquaint- 
ance of a young Japanese officer in charge of the man- 
ufacture of paper currency for the government, at 
Frankfort, and persuaded him to study the Bible. 
Twe years later, on the eve of his return to Japan, 
Mr. Neesima received a letter informing him that his 
fellow-countryman had embraced Christianity, and in 
his journal writes : " While at Wiesbaden I was dis- 
heartened on account of my long illness. I now begin 
to see that my being there was not entirely in vain. 
It is a great comfort for us to know that the Lord 
does sooner or later turn our bitter waters into sweet, 
and I am thankful to Him for my illness." 


BERLIN, October 2, 1872. 

I found yours of the 25th of August from Berchtes- 
gaden on my return to Berlin. I was very much 
pleased for your kind and interesting letter, and trust 
your health and Mr. Hardy's was very much bene- 


fited by breathing in that invigorating mountain air. 
1 have had a difficult matter for my consideration for 
these past few weeks. As you know well I was quite 
undecided whether I should go home with Mr. Tan- 
aka, or come back to America to finish my study in 
Andover. I have been deliberating on the question 
these long whiles. But since I came back here I am 
requested by Mr. Tanaka to go home with him. 
He says he could not get along without me, for he has 
some intention to print some Christian books besides 
his own reports. Another thing has arisen to hasten 
me to go home for a while. That is to say, I began 
to feel cold weather sensibly here in Berlin within a 
;few days. So I fear my old trouble may come back to 
me if I expose myself to a very cold weather. This 
thought does discourage me to go back to Andover to 
resume my study this year. So I thought that I 
might go home for a year or two to get rid of this 
rheumatic trouble in that milder climate, and then I 
may possibly be prepared to meet the cold New Eng- 
land winter again. It causes me a great regret for my 
not resuming the study at present, but I am obliged 
to look after my health. If you have no objection 
I would rather decide to go home with Mr. Tanaka. 
I wish you would tell me what I should do. As you 
know, it was an understanding between you and me 
that I should come back to America by all means be- 
fore I go home. Mr. Tanaka is talking to go home via 
Suez, for it would be a great deal warmer than by the 
American continent. But I would rather go via Bos- 
ton ; and if the cold weather might be very unsafe for 
my rheumatism, I might tarry in warmer part of Eu- 
rope until the next spring. But I fear Mr. Tanaka 
would not wait for me until the next spring, for he 


has detached himself entirely from the embassy. If 
I forsake him he will be alone. Shall I satisfy my 
own ardent desire to see my American friends and 
cause an inconveniency to Mr. Tanaka, or accom- 
modate Mr. Tanaka and deny my own appetite? I 
am determined to come back to the United States to 
resume and complete my theological study in order to 
fit myself wholly for the missionary labor. I have no 
desire after the worldly wealth or fame, for I believe 
I have firmly fixed my eyes to the glory and excellence 
of Christ. Since I came to Europe and saw so many 
ungodly people I can clearly see the necessity of the 
gospel truth to human souls. 

We have now about eighty Japanese students in 
Berlin, but all of them have fallen in the habit of 
ridiculing Christian people without knowing what 
Christian truth is. One of them asked Mr. Tanaka's 
intimate friend whether Mr. Tanaka has become a 
priest, because that irreligious Japanese has heard of 
his being with me and reading Christian books with 
an intense interest. When Mr. Tanaka heard about 
that contemptuous remark he did not mind of it, but 
was only smiling. I think if these men go home they 
will cause a great hindrance to the cause of Christ's 
church, which has just begun to exist in Japan. I 
am thinking it may be a good season now for me to 
open a way to the missionaries and shade the national 
education with the Christian and moral principles 
before they attempt to do great mischief to the coun- 
try. O that God may direct all my thoughts and 
affairs. I pray you to advise me what steps I should 
take. I trust you will throw a better light upon me. 

I am working pretty hard now, spending nearly six 
hours a day for translating the school laws and reports 
of different European countries. 



BERLIN, October 20, 1872. 

Your fatherly kindness and deepest sympathy with 
me did move me to many tears. I have been prayer- 
fully and more deeply thinking upon the question I 
did propose to you in my last letter, and am earnestly 
seeking for a better light not to plan my future affairs 
worldly, but to yield myself to the whispering voice 
"follow me." 

Yes, I may possibly render some good service to 
our people by going home with Mr. Tanaka and as- 
sisting him in establishing a new school system in 
Japan. If I do engage to such a work I would not 
give it up in a half way, and if I do wish to accom- 
plish it, it could not be done at least within two or 
three years. Mr. Tanaka does not think that the 
work would take much time, and as soon as an edu- 
cational system is established in the country he would 
send me back to resume my theological study. He 
does think our work no less easy than his traveling 
through a large part of Europe within four month?- 
But I must not take what he says without careful con- 
sideration. It is well for me to exercise the Biblt> 
teaching: "Be wise as serpent and harmless as dove." 
If I go home now without looking afar off I may 
probably be fallen into a snare and find a considerable 
difficulty to get out again. If I am fastened by such 
a way, what shall I do with the voice "follow me" ? 
As our lives are too brief I must not take too much 
of my time for the worldly affairs. In order to work 
for my Master it is necessary for me to make a due 
preparation ; in order to qualify myself to the work it 
is also necessary to breathe once more in ihs pious 


atmosphere of New England. Would you pray for 
me that Providence may bring me once more to An- 
dover Seminary? Please let all my things be in An- 
dover as they now are. 


BERLIN, December 16, 1872. 

In regard to my future steps, not hearing from you 
any further advice, I made a decision not to go home 
with Mr. Tanaka. Please allow me to give you a 
reason for my decision. 1st. Mr. Tanaka does not 
know exactly what position he could get for me, only 
that he should make use of me by some way. His in- 
vitation is not authoritative, but his private opinion. 
The Japanese government is still unsettled; and if he 
is replaced in his position, who will be responsible for 
me ? Therefore I will not accept his invitation, for it 
seems me too much like a child's play. 2d. If I go 
home now, while I may possibly render some service 
for our government, I fear my time will be taken up 
too much for that purpose and cause me delay to com- 
mence my service to my spiritual sovereign. I feel 
more and more that I am captured by my Saviour, and 
shall not be happy if I do not work for my Master. 
As my theological course is not yet half finished, I 
would like to resume it until I should be ordained to 
preach the gospel to my benighted countrymen. It 
was my first choice that I should ever take my cross 
and follow my Master. It is my happiest choice, and 
I believe it is the best choice. As you have been my 
spiritual mother and kind patron thus far, I trust you 
will still continue your kindness and allow me to pro- 
mote my study still further. I have been intending 
to send you some money, which I have saved for my 


educational purposes, to be kept by you. I should like 
to tell you some of my experiences in Germany, but 
time does not allow me to do so. I called on Mr. 
Sears a few days ago ; he is much interested in music. 
Since I wrote you my health has been very poor, 
nervousness, sleeplessness, and dizzy headache. I 
once almost concluded to discontinue my work, but I 
am slowly gaining now. I was perfectly awestruck 
when I heard the news that the charming city, the 
Queen of New England, was devoured with the 
tongues of consuming fire. I do not know how large 
share you have in the calamity, but I trust it would 
not be very heavy upon you. 


BERLIN, January 6, 1873. 

Allow me to shake your hands at a great distance 
and congratulate you from this side of Atlantic for 
your entering into another year with ever increasing 
happiness and prosperity, as I trust. As for me I 
can simply say as Apostle Paul said, I am what I am. 
Though my health has been rather poor I am still per- 
mitted to keep up my engagements for our govern- 
ment. How good God has been with me during the 
past years. As our future is entirely unknown to us, 
I simply trust He will lead you and me step by step, 
as it was in past, into eternal future. 

Now allow me to inform you what a pleasant time I 
had last Christmas Eve with Mr. Sears. It was the 
first for me to see the real German Christmas festival. 
It is customary with the Germans to sing on every 
occasion. It was opened with singing and reading 
the New Testament. Then we were shut up in a robm 
without light, and after a while were led into another 


room where we found many piles of the presents on 
the tables. He gave me a pretty traveling valise. 
I was much pleased with the festival, not simply that 
it was rather a new and strange thing to me, but that 
every one in the room was smiling with the intense 

Since that time I have been very busy for getting 
Mr. Tanaka ready to leave Berlin. He left three 
days ago for Vienna and Rome, and will start from 
Paris for Japan this month; so I shall be obliged to 
finish my report for him before he starts. Besides 
the educational affairs I was requested by him to write 
a brief report on the Christian churches in England 
and America. 

Perhaps you have already noticed in your paper 
that our government has given up our old calendar, 
and adopted the European one. All our eighty Jap- 
anese students in Berlin gathered at one of the restau- 
rants and drank beer to celebrate our new epoch. I 
went there also, but did not enjoy it very much. 
There was the uncle of our emperor in that gathering. 
He appeared very humble and gentlemanly. I am also 
glad to inform you that one of the Japanese students 
in Berlin came to me the first Sabbath of this year 
and requested me to explain the Bible to him, and also 
take him to the Methodist church, where I generally 
go. I was quite surprised by his request ; it is en- 
tirely voluntary. We took the Gospel of St. John 
for our first exercise. He had the Chinese and Ger- 
man Bibles and I the English and German. Of 
course we used our native tongue for the conversation. 
We were very much interested, and two hours of hard 
:.tudy seemed to us very short. He went away quite 
satisfied and promising to continue his study every 


Sabbath. He told me that none of the Japanese stu- 
dents in Berlin study the Bible. How sad it is that 
so many know nothing of Christianity. I wish you 
would offer special prayer for that one who has just 
begun to study with me, that the thick unbelieving 
scales may fall from his eyes and he may see the gen- 
tle Saviour standing by him. 


BERLIN, January 15, 1873. 

I have just received your kind letters. It does 
seem to me a gentle and refreshing rain to a dry and 
parching land. I am so glad you passed the last 
Christmas with your friends so pleasantly and were 
ready to enter into the new year. 

Through your description of the present state of 
Boston I could almost see the ruin before my eyes. 

With regard to Japan, she is getting brighter and 
brighter, although the progress is somewhat superfi- 
cial. I am so rejoiced to know that my aged father 
had an opportunity to see my teacher and friend, Pro- 
fessor Seelye. 

I have not felt well at all since my return to Berlin, 
probably owing to my extensive trip and continued 
labor. I have been unable to go out for three days 
on account of rheumatism. Dr. Keep and my physi- 
cian advise me to go to Wiesbaden. I could not recon- 
cile to the idea of going there, for I thought it is not 
the place for a poor fellow like myself; but after an 
investigation I found it not so expensive as I thought, 
so I made up my mind to go there. If you have no 
objection I should like to remain in Europe until next 
summer, partly for my health and partly for my fur- 
ther investigation on the educational system of Ger- 


many. But as I am your minor you must tell me 
what you think the best and I will follow your guide. 
I have sent you a check for 8480 gold. I calculate 
it will be sufficient to support me for another year's 
study in Andover. 


WIESBADEN, March 5, 1873. 

I have been here just three weeks and taken nine- 
teen baths. My health has been improving pretty 
steadily, and I hope as soon as the weather is settled 
to be well again. I think this bath is an excellent 
thing for rheumatism, but it does rather excite my 
nerves. Hence my nervous headache is no better than 
it was three weeks ago. My physician advises me to 
continue the bath a week or two longer and also drink 
the mineral water. When I started from Berlin I 
was much disheartened, for I thought it too bad for a 
young man like myself to be unable to do much bodily 
or mentally, and to go to a bathing place for cure. 
But since I came here and saw many suffering young 
people in much worse condition than myself, I began 
to feel very much encouraged and also to be thankful 
for God's gentle dealing with me. 

I suppose you are well acquainted with this place, 
so I shall not make you any description of it. It is a 
very pretty place, but a large part of the people are 
pleasure worshipers. The theatre, dancing party, 
and masked ball are very well attended, but the 
churches are empty. Yet I have found here a few 
real Christians and made several acquaintances among 
them. They were so glad to see me who was brought 
to light from darkness. Although I am living here 
amidst strangers, I begin to feel quite at home by 


knowing these few Christian people. Taking the 
whole it seems me that Protestantism in Germany is a 
matter of policy and does differ vastly from what it is 
on the free shore of New England. 

April 6, 1873. 

My thought daily flies towards you, but, alas, my 
bodily infirmities! Although my rheumatism is en- 
tirely over, I am still troubled by heavy, dizzy, and 
constant headache. I left bath house two weeks ago 

and came to Pastor H 's house. He is a very 

pious Lutheran preacher. Although his dogmatic 
view is somewhat different from mine, there is no 
slightest unpleasantness between us. He wishes that 
I should study the Lutheran theology and tries to con- 
vince me it is purest among all others. But I cannot 
quite agree to some points. 

Mr. Sears informs me that he is decided to start 
for home on the steamer Germania, June 14th, from 
Hamburg. I thought at once I should accompany 
him. While I was reflecting upon this subject in my 
sleepless bed a thought came upon me which you may 
possibly call an ambitious one. As you know, v l have 
been in Germany over seven months, five of which I 
spent entirely for Mr. Tanaka; so I have not had 
great opportunity to learn the language. If I return 
to America or Japan without knowing the language 
sufficiently I shall be very much laughed at by my 
countrymen who are now making such a progress at 
home in sciences and European languages under for- 
eign instructors. I also think it very necessary for 
me to keep myself a little ahead of them in modern X 
thoughts, sciences, and language, in order to be a 
public man religiously. If I return to America in 


June it would be just vacation time, and I may not 
accomplish a great deal there. So I am rather per- 
suaded to remain in Germany until the first of August. 
I received a good news from home about two weeks 
ago. My father and sister wrote me very pleasantly. 
He says in his letter how pleased he was with the news 
of my accompanying Mr. Tanaka, and says also his 
long anxiety for me is well paid by it. He went to 
Yokohama and received the money which I sent him 
from Boston. Since the Japanese feudal system is 
abolished and he is deprived of his possession in his 
prince's house, he has been living on what he has saved 
during his service. A missionary in Yokohama told 
him the story of Joseph, comparing him to thi ; un- 
worthy Joseph. He says he came to Yokohama on a 
little carriage driven by man instead of horse. It is 
the present fashion of our conveyance. 


ELSINGEN, GERMANY, August 6, 1873. 

I finished the second course of mineral baths at 
Wiesbaden two weeks ago and took my departure from 
that fashionable city for Friedrichsdorf , a small town 
not far from Homburg, to pay a visit to my old Berlin 
acquaintances. Most of the inhabitants are descend- 
ants of Huguenots and are still speaking their mother 
tongue. They read the French Bible and sing the 
French hymns. To my great surprise some of them 
could not speak German at all. Through my friends 
I was introduced to several Huguenot families, and 
was invited by them to dinner or supper every day of 
my stay. I was so pleased to see some of them cling- 
ing to the old faith, and keeping the Sabbath as their 
poor suffering fathers did, while the large part of 


Germany is taking the Sabbath as holiday instead of 
holy-day. I could not help shedding out my tears 
when I heard three little girls of the family where I 
stopped offering sweet French prayers in their morning 
devotion. I attended the French service with them 
in the morning and went to a Methodist chapel in the 
evening. Most of the Huguenots go there in the 
evening, although they are still Calvinists. I visited 
two famous institutions in the town, one for boys' and 
another for girls' education. They were much pleased 
to see a converted Japanese, and the girls brought me 
5 thalers 13 groschen for the Japan mission, express- 
ing their best wishes. Each one gave about 8 cents, 
which I consider a great sacrifice for these young girls. 
I came to this place to find out the management and 
regulations of the teachers' seminary. I have been 
here just one week, visiting the seminary and elemen- 
tary schools attached to it every day. I will not write 
you my observations, because it will require a consid- 
erable time ; but suffice me to say that German sys- 
tem is excellent, slow but sure. I am intending to 
leave Germany next week and go to my beloved Amer- 
ica by the way of Paris and London. My friends and 
physician in Wiesbaden advised me to return to Japan 
on account of rheumatism. But I feel a plow is on 
my hands. On the other hand I fear my health would 
not allow me to work enough to satisfy my craving 
appetite for knowledge. I am now entirely free from 
rheumatic pain, and also from headache from which I 
have been suffering for nearly five months, but my 
nervous system is not quite strong yet. I get tired 
easily when I try to use my brains. I have saved 
money enough to carry on my study one year longer. 



LONDON, August 27, 1873. 

I found your letter at Barings' yesterday. I had 
some thought to go home before next winter, fear- 
ing to spend it on that windy hill of Andover. But 
your kind advice gives me a new courage to take up 
again the plow in my hand. Then I shall go home. 
The Lord has preserved me thus far so wonderfully, 
though I have been often troubled by my body, that 
I will put my confidence boldly into his hand and try 
to do my best to prepare myself for my future labor 
among my countrymen. Pray for me that I may give 
bold and faithful service in his ever-conquering bat- 

Mr. Neesima returned to Andover in September, 
1873. During his absence he had laid aside from the 
salary received from the embassy a sum which he pro- 
posed to devote to the completion of his theological 
course, but he was persuaded to invest it and to allow 
his friends to continue their aid. Anxious to begin 
at once his active life, he resolved to remain at An- 
dover but one year and to accomplish as far as possi- 
ble in that year the seminary work allotted to twice 
that time. Fortunately his health continued J^ood. 
His letters of this year are the simple record of per- 
sistent study. In February, 1874, he writes: "The 
young ladies in the Academy have invited our students 
to their private levee this evening. All good-looking 
men are invited. A few stupid fellows are exempted. 
I am one of them. I could not help laughing at it." 
He adds : " I have received a letter from Mr. Gordon, 
a missionary in Osaka. He is very anxious to have 


me come there. He finds it quite hard to preach in 
Japanese. If I did not know him to be a careful man 
I would not believe that his statement is true, it seems 
so graphic and highly colored concerning the rapid 
growth of my country. I do not yet know my fu- 
ture destiny in Japan. I have not yet an idea where 
I shall be settled or how I shall be supported." 

In March he writes : " Dr. Clark, Secretary of the 
American Board, sent me word to call on him as soon 
as possible, in order to talk over with me my future 
plans. Accordingly I did so. He showed me a letter 
from Mr. Green, a missionary at Kobe, and asked me 
whether I was willing to offer myself to the mission- 
ary work in Japan. Of course I made an uncondi- 
tional surrender to this call." 

At the same time an urgent appeal for his presence 
and cooperation was received from the missionaries 
at Kobe, several of whom were his personal friends 
and had been associated with him as fellow-students. 
Even a perfect morality must suffer from lame exposi- 
tion, and the need was felt of one who could speak in 
the Japanese tongue, who could interpret much that 
was harsh and forbidding, because foreign, to the 
Japanese mind, and who should add to intellectual 
power that of winning confidence and giving sym- 
pathy, a power which a native only could effectively 

As a result of his conversation with Dr. Clark, Mr. 
Neesima definitely offered himself as a missionary 
under the auspices of the American Board, to whose 
secretaries he addressed the following: letter : 



, April 30, 1874. 

Dear Sirs, Allow me to state to you a brief his= 
tory of my early education, my later Christian experi- 
ence, and especially my motive in offering myself to 
the missionary work in Japan. 

I was brought up in the faith of Buddhism, and was 
also instructed in the moral precepts of Confucius. 
Afterwards the former became offensive to me and 
the latter were unsatisfactory. Under these influ- 
ences I became somewhat skeptical, notwithstanding 
at times I had some desire for something higher and 

In that state of mind I came across a Chinese trans- 
lation of the Bible history by an American mission- 
ary in China. Its expressive view of God led me to 
inquire still further after Hun. With this purpose I 
was led to leave my home, and took passage for Amer- 
ica. The Providence which ordered my way so far 
provided friends at Boston who have thus far sup- 
ported me in my education. I date my conversion 
some time after my arrival in this country, but I was 
seeking God and his light from the hour I read his 

With my new experience was born a desire to 
preach the gospel among my people. The motive in 
offering myself to this work is my sympathy with the 
need of my country, and loVe for perishing souls and 
above all the love of Christ has constrained me to this 
work. I expect to complete my study this summer. 
I am not in debt at all. My health was quite good 
while in Japan, but since my arrival in this country it 


has been somewhat poor; still it is improving now. 
I expect to remain unmarried some time. 
Respectfully yours, 


In reply to the questions propounded in the manual 
of the Board for missionary candidates, he wrote : 

" In my view the leading doctrines of the Scrip- 
tures are : the existence of one true God, inspiration of 
the Scriptures; the Trinity; the decrees of God; the 
freedom of the will ; the total depravity of man ; the 
atonement; regeneration; justification by faith; the 
resurrection of the dead; the final judgment. I have 
not the least doubts respecting any of the doctrines 
commonly held by the churches sustaining the missions 
under the care of the Board. My confidence in the 
reality of my conversion is in my growing trust in 
Christ and increasing sympathy with truth. My views 
of ministerial duty are to preach the gospel to the sal- 
vation of men. My desire to enter the ministerial 
work is due to the need of it in Japan, and my hope 
that I may be of some service in supplying that need. 
I expect to meet with some difficulties and trials ; yet 
I shall count all joy, not only to believe in Christ, but 
also to suffer for his name. It is my purpose to give 
my life to this work. ' ' 

Mr. Neesima was thereupon appointed corresponding 
member of the Japan mission. He preached his first 
sermon from the pulpit in the church of Rev. E- 
G. Porter in Lexington, Mass., on May 10, 1874, 
choosing for his text the verse he so dearly loved 
(John iii. 16). On July 2d he graduated as a special 
student from the Andover Theological Seminary, in a 
class of twenty -one, and was one of nine speakers iii 


the graduating exercises. The subject of his address, 
delivered in Japanese, was "The Preaching of Christ 
in Japan." The summer of 1874 was devoted to 
preparations for his homeward journey and to farewell 
visits to his many friends. The latter part of August 
he passed with Mr. and Mrs. Hardy at their summer 
home in Bar Harbor, Maine, returning to Boston for 
his ordination, which took place on Thursday, Septem- 
ber 24th, at the Mount Vernon Church in that city. 
Delegates were invited from twenty leading churches 
in the vicinity, and there were also present as dele- 
gates at large, Prof. J. H. Seelye of Amherst, Drs. 
Anderson, Treat, and Clark, of the American Board, 
Dr. J. L. Taylor of Andover, and Dr. G. ~W. Blag- 
den of Boston. The ordination sermon was preached 
by Dr. Seelye from the text: "And I, if I be lifted 
up from the earth, will draw all men unto me." The 
right hand of fellowship was extended by Rev. Eph- 
raim Flint of Hinsdale, and the charge was delivered 
by Rev. A. C. Thompson of the Prudential Commit- 
tee of the Board. 

On Friday, October 9th, the sixty-fifth annual 
meeting of the American Board of Commissioners for 
Foreign Missions was held at Rutland, Vermont. At 
this meeting Mr. Neesima was present, and was asked, 
with others who, like himself, were about to leave for 
foreign stations, to make some remarks at the farewell 
session in the evening. The subject of his brief ad- 
dress, which was an earnest appeal for the establish- 
ment of a Christian college in Japan, had long been 
in his thought. He had had some conversation with 
Secretary Clark and Mr. Hardy upon this plan of his, 
but received little encouragement. Just before his 
death, when this long-cherished scheme had become a 


reality, he referred to it as at this time only a day- 
dream. The importance of education as the hand- 
maid of religion, and the advantages to be derived by 
the Board in its special evangelistic work from an 
institution whose courses of study should be pursued 
under Christian influences, were fully recognized. 
Still, education in itself was not the primary object 
of the Board, and its officers were reluctant to encour- 
age appeals for special purposes, however praise- 
worthy, at a time when the expansion of its regular 
work rendered increased contributions imperative. 
But it is evidence of Mr. Neesima's breadth of view 
and persistence of purpose that he should have con- 
ceived this project at this early stage, and in the face 
of fifteen years of difficulties and opposition carried 
it to a successful issue. Mr. Neesima was a true 
evangelist. In every circumstance, at every stopping- 
place in the journey of life, he spoke for his Master. 
His life is a record of personal endeavor. But he 
took no narrow view of duty or opportunity, was 
wedded to no single line of effort. He had pondered 
deeply upon the future needs of his countrymen. He 
knew their thirst for knowledge. He foresaw the ad- 
vancing tide of education ; he wished it also to bear 
the seeds of a Christian faith. He belonged himself 
to a class whose intelligence and patriotism destined 
them to the control of their country's future. This 
class he wished to win over, and to accomplish this he 
foresaw the necessity of an educated native ministry. 
In a communication addressed to the Prudential Com- 
mittee ten years later he said : 

"Though the feudal system was abolished by the 
late revolution, still the men of that (samurai) class 
are leading the nation. Their young generation, 


catching the chivalrous spirit from their fathers, will 
also be our leaders in the immediate future. 

"It is a curious class. Perhaps you could nowhere 
else find such in the whole Asiatic continent. It is 
neither like the exclusive Brahmins of India nor the 
warrior robbers of Arabia. So far as my own obser- 
vation is concerned, they are the most haughty and 
ambitious race you could possibly find in the country. 
They have been trained to be faithful to their feudal 
masters even unto death. The spirit of patriotism has 
been handed down among them from generation to 
generation. To them honor is everything; life and 
property are of no account. Harakiri^ an act of 
self -destruction, was only practiced among this class 
because they deemed it a shame to be killed by others. 
They are indeed the oriental knights, the spirit of 
Japan and flower of the nation. Though their rank 
seemed rather servile, in truth they have been ruling 
the nation from behind the screen of nominal poten- 
tates these past six centuries. It was truly they who 
started the late revolution. It was they who crushed 
the Shogun's despotic government and restored the 
reigning power to the sacred personage of the long- 
secluded Mikado. It was they who cast off the old 
worn-out Asiatic system and adopted the vigorous 
form of European civilization. It was they who 
started schools, pushed the press, cried out for per- 
sonal rights, and are now working out the way for a 
free constitution. I am happy to affirm here that 
they also are destined to carry the glad tidings of 
human salvation to their fellow-countrymen. They 
are far better educated than any other class. They 
are no longer ignorant, or worshipers of dumb idols. 
Modern science is a whetstone to their intellect. En 


ropean politics are but juicy beefsteak to their desper- 
ate appetites. If we let them take their own course, 
what will be the future destiny of Japan? If they 
fall down Japan will go down with them. And if 
fhey rise they will certainly raise up the whole nation. 
If you take them away from the people, nothing but 
old-fashioned plodders will be left behind. National 
prosperity or misery hangs upon the pivot of this 
particular class. I believe it is just the time to reach, 
rescue, and win them to Christ. If we let them swim 
away from the gospel net, they will certainly be 
caught by the Devil's hand. Remember that he is 
far wiser than the children of light. If we fail to 
reach them now, we fear we shall find the process of 
evangelization an uphill work. But if we win them 
we shall certainly win the whole Sunrise Empire. 
Being far better educated than any other class, they 
are more susceptible to Christian truth. Being 
strictly trained to faithfulness to their feudal masters, 
they will be more faithful to the Master of masters, if 
He is made clearly known to them. Being middle in 
rank, they can reach both the higher and the lower. 
This may be the very class where you may expect to 
find a Saul of Tarsus. Yea, this may be the people 
whom God has chosen from the beginning to be the 
foremost cross-bearers, to lead their fellow-country- 
men to the Eternal City. 

"Your question will naturally arise: how to reach 
this class? to which my reply will be very simple. 
Provide for us the highest and best possible downright 
Christian institution. It is the only way to both sat- 
isfy and win them. My ten years' experience in Japan 
has induced me to affirm that the highest possible 
Christian education will be & power to save the nation." 


On the evening of the day previous to the farewell 
meeting Mr. Neesima consulted Mr. Hardy upon the 
advisability of laying this plan before the Board. Re- 
ferring to this incident in a letter written in 1889, he 
says: "Mr. Hardy was doubtful about my attaining 
any success; however, I was rather insisting to do it 
because it was my last chance to bring out such a 
subject to such a grand Christian audience. Then 
he spoke to me half -smiling, and in a most tender fa- 
therly manner said, 'Joseph, the matter looks rather 
dubious, but you might try it. ' Receiving that con- 
sent, I went back to the place where I was entertained 
and tried to make a preparation for the speech. I 
found my heart throbbing, and found myself utterly 
unable to make a careful preparation. ! was then 
like that poor Jacob, wrestling with God in my 
prayers. On the following day, when I appeared on 
the stage, I could hardly remember my prepared piece 
a poor untried speaker; but after a minute I re- 
covered myself, and my trembling knees became firm 
and strong; a new thought flashed into my mind, and 
I spoke something quite different from my prepared 
speech. My whole speech must have lasted less than 
fifteen minutes. While I was speaking I was moved 
with the most intense feeling over my fellow-country- 
men, and I shed much tears instead of speaking in 
their behalf. But before I closed my poor speech 
about five thousand dollars were subscribed on the 
spot to found a Christian college in Japan." 

No record of Mr. Neesima' s address has been pre- 
served. The movement was unpremeditated and un- 
expected, and the action which followed was not that 
of the Board as such and consequently found no place 
in the secretary's minutes. But all present felt the 


intense earnestness of the speaker, and refer to the 
scene as one never to be forgotten. Swept away by 
his feelings, refusing to resume his seat until his ap- 
peal was answered, declaring that he would not return 
to Japan without the money he asked for and that 
he should stand on that platform until he got it, the 
young Japanese carried his audience with him. Hon. 
Peter Parker of Washington rose and subscribed one 
thousand dollars ; Ex-Governor Page of Vermont and 
Hon. William E. Dodge of New York, followed with 
like sums, and before Mr. Neesima had finished, his 
day-dream had become a reality. 

Towards the end of October, after an absence of 
nearly ten years, he left New York for Japan, via San 
Francisco, the first ordained evangelist of his race. 


GREEN RIVER, WYOMING, October 25, 1874. 
I must explain to you why I am stopping here to 
spend the Sabbath on this lonely mountain top. 
When I left Chicago I made a miscalculation about 
spending the Sabbath. I thought I could reach Salt 
Lake City Saturday evening. But it was not so. 
Then I thought I must not travel on the Sabbath. I 
might have stopped at Cheyenne or Laramie, but I 
found it not best to lose time, so I traveled last night 
and got out from the train at this breakfast station. 
Soon after breakfast I engaged a room in a small and 
miserable inn, a pretty rough-looking one. The 
people in this place are rough-looking workmen. I 
found a half-dozen Chinese in the dining-room of the 
station. I talked with them through my pen and 
found most of them agreeable and polite. One of 
them wrote good Chinese, asking me why I stopped in 


this place. My reply was, to spend the Sabbath. 1 
asked him whether he does believe in Jesus Christ, 
and his reply was, "I belong to." It was indeed a 
pleasant answer. I told him when he was through his 
work I should like a few minutes in conversation with 
him and his countrymen. Here is no church, but 
many drinking houses, and I do not know what kind 
of Sabbath I shall have in this lonely mountain town. 
If I could not wisely reach these rough settlers I will 
try to talk with the Chinese on the subject of religion. 
I told a few fellow-travelers on the train of my view 
of stopping in these wild regions, but none did en- 
courage me, because it may not be safe or pleasant. 
Some told me there is no Sabbath west of Mississippi 
River. I did not listen to them at all. I must mind 
my own business. My keeping the Sabbath does not 
depend on anybody else. 


SAN FRANCISCO, October 29, 1874. 

I am just arrived in this city where our missionary 
party is (five for Japan and two for China). I spent 
last Sabbath quietly at Green River, Wyoming. It 
is a strange place. I called on the Chinese and had 
pleasant conversation with them. I found two out of 
sixteen somewhat acquainted with the Christian truth. 
The rest of them are unable to talk English, and are 
low, ignorant, and degraded. They keep their gods 
in their house. They live together like pigs. It is a 
pretty rough place. More than a half of the settlers 
are young and unmarried men. I tried to reach them 
by some way but found it almost impossible. They 
are bound to be wicked. I went to Salt Lake City 
Monday evening and tried to see Brigham Young, but 


was unsuccessful on account of his illness. I saw his 
secretary, and through him I was introduced to Orson 
Pratt, the ablest preacher and writer among them and 
also one of their twelve apostles. He was very gen- 
tlemanly, and answered very patiently all my ques- 
tions about Mormonism. He desired me to preach 
the gospel which he preaches, but I thanked him and 
answered him I should preach the gospel which I find 
in the New Testament and nothing else. He was not 
offended by my reply, and willingly assisted me in 
visiting objects of interest, the Tabernacle, City 
Hall, Mormon University, etc. 

I enjoyed the trip exceedingly, especially the scen- 
ery on this side of Green River. My bag is almost 
filled with geological specimens. Snow at the summit 
was nearly eight inches deep, but within a few hours 
we found the climate mild and nature looking quite 
genial and inviting. I am invited to Oakland to 
speak to friends of missions. 

October 30. 

Your coming to New Haven to see me off made 
my leaving Boston easier than I expected. You 
seemed to know exactly what I felt about leaving your 
home. It was a great treat to me that both of you 
came, and gave me the opportunity of bidding you 
farewell the second time. I am also greatly indebted 
to you for your parting present. My father is in debt 
now, and this will help me to pay off his debt and also 
get a few things for my parents and sisters. I trust 
you know how grateful I am to you, although I utterly 
lack in words to express it. 



LAT. 30 6' N., LONG. 158 25' E. 
November 21, 1874. 

Hoping to meet a homeward mail steamer before we 
reach Japan, I undertake to write a few lines to let 
you know how far we are advancing on this wide 
ocean. We embarked on the Colorado on the 31st 
ult. Just an hour before she left San Francisco the 
steward handed me Mr. Hardy's kind letter for my 
father. When we sailed out from the Golden Gate 
the day was remarkably bright, and the sea wonder- 
fully quiet. We found the breeze so mild and agree- 
able that we could stay on deck quite late in the even- 
ing without overcoat. A few days after we left we 
began to seek for our congenial companions. I found 
the Sabbath the best time to find or rather read the 
moral and religious character of the passengers. By 
combining my observations on the Sabbath and week 
days I can get an approximate opinion of their chief 
aim for this life. We have forty -five cabin passengers 
and 230 steerage. The former consist of eleven dif- 
ferent nationalities, i. e. , American, English, Belgian, 
French, Austrian, Prussian, Polish, Italian, Irish, 
Chinese, and Japanese, and the latter chiefly of Chi- 
nese. There are quite a number of opium smokers 
among the Chinese, and six of them died since we left 
San Francisco. Is it not a dreadful thing? It is a 
great curse to the Chinese. Woe unto them who first 
introduced it to that empire. These opium smokers 
are not allowed to smoke anywhere, but are compelled 
to smoke in a large box, the inside of which is lined 
with tin, once used for keeping ice in. Those who 
died were mostly aged men. - I saw there a man who 
has not been out of that box since we left San Fran- 


cisco. He is lying there day and night, and has 
scarcely taken anything except that deadly poison. I 
have not formed any special acquaintances among the 
passengers beside our missionary friends except a 
German doctor who is going to be a professor in the 
Imperial Medical School at Yedo, and to whom I give 
Japanese lessons every day. Our missionaries are 
obliged to suspend its study on account of seasickness. 
The sea has lately been very rough; even I who pro- 
fessed to be a good sailor have been ill this week on 
account of the unceasing up and down motions. I 
have read through Eitel's Lectures on Buddhism and 
some other books, and am intending to write a Jap- 
anese sermon. I have observed among the passengers 
that they form different societies. The smokers go 
together as they were real and congenial friends, and 
so do the drinkers. The Germans get up a beer 
party every evening, and so do the English their rum 
party. Here is one gentleman, who leans on an um- 
brella wherever he goes, who is intending simply to 
go round the world before he dies. This is his ambi- 
tion. He was in Egypt, Palestine, Austria, and 
Switzerland last year, but has not much idea of these 
countries. I asked him of Cairo and Alexandria. 
He replied, "O, they are very large cities." A Cali- 
fornia lady who is going to China and Japan with her 
little (but very obstinate) girl, on account of consump- 
tive tendency, looks pretty vain. She walks on deck 
like a queen, and her little daughter goes likewise 
with a royal atmosphere. A fat English gentleman 
appears always smoking ; he is perfectly satisfied with 
his pipe. Here are two young unmarried ladies. 
They are not afraid to speak with any one. A 
number of young fellows are anxious to wait on them, 


especially some Frenchmen. I often sat by the groiip 
of these pleasure- seeking people, and to my great sur- 
prise I find them talking nonsense and laughing over 
something which is not laughable at all. There are 
two very hard workers among us ; one German doctor, 
my pupil, and one English gentleman. The former 
studies seven hours a day, and the latter reads day 
and night. As I said before, I have not formed 
many acquaintances because I cannot enjoy their com- 
pany. Their chief enjoyments are only eating, drink- 
ing, and indulging all sensual pleasures; they excuse 
themselves by saying that their natures demand it. 
In so giving themselves up, how do they distinguish 
themselves from a mere brute? 

I had a real hot argument with two Germans the 
other day. I do not know whether I have done any 
good for them, but at any rate I put them into a cor- 
ner. They afterwards confessed to me that my argu- 
ment is from the spiritual and ideal side, but theirs 
is from observation among the common mass of the 
human race. They told me, also, that I learned my 
argument from priests. 

The sea is getting more quiet, and we may possibly 
celebrate Thanksgiving at Yokohama. It was very 
hard for me to bid you farewell, and I am still feel- 
ing that I am taking some vacation trip and cannot 
fully realize that I am so soon to enter ministerial life. 
Certainly I shall realize it when I see a multitude of 
benighted people before my eyes. I shall omit here 
my deep reflection upon my past life. With regard 
to my present feeling, you may think it very strange. 
Only explanation I can give you is as follows : 

In my past experience I have always found myself 
cold, self -possessing, and also somewhat indifferent, 


whenever I have some view of great undertaking be- 
fore me. But I cannot understand myself why I am 
so cold now when I have a view of going home. I 
suppose I shall not realize it until I come to Yoko- 
hama and see my father face to face. He may not 
kill a calf for me, but he will certainly welcome, em- 
brace, and kiss me. I shall start for Yedo at once; 
and thence for Annaka where my parents live now. 
Dr. Treat gave me a permission to stay with my father 
at least two weeks. They will be very busy weeks in 
telling all my experiences in America, the land of my 
exiled adoption, and also visiting and receiving my 
old acquaintances. Although the distance between us 
is increasing more and more, my affection towards you 
is increasing. Whenever I think of you I feel like a 
crying child. I dreamed of you and Mr. Hardy an- 
other night. Although I do not believe in any dream 
sign, still I think it very pleasant. In it I welcomed 
both of you in my Japanese home, which was furnished 
in a real Japanese style. The pleasant smile of both 
of you seemed so real to me. So I take it as a good 
omen of your paying me a visit in Japan. Please re- 
member my dream, and let me rejoice in welcoming 
your real persons in some future day. 



THE changes which had taken place in Japan dur- 
ing the comparatively brief interval of Mr. Neesima's 
absence have no parallel in the history of nations. 
Politically, Japanese history may be divided into three 
periods. The first begins in mythological times and 
closes with the twelfth century. The national records 
of this period are unbroken, describing in one contin- 
uous story the exploits of the divine generations 
whence, after countless ages, in 660 B. c., sprung the 
first human sovereign, Jimmu Tenno. But a thou- 
sand years must be added to the alleged date of Jimmu 
Tenno 's accession before we reach, in the seventh cen- 
tury A. D., any solid foundation of historical fact. 
The central figure of this period is the Mikado, an 
absolute, heaven-descended sovereign, lord paramount 
of the soil and of all its inhabitants, governing 
through the kuge, or court nobles, themselves allied 
to the imperial family, being chiefly descendants of 
the Mikado's younger sons. 

The second period, beginning in the twelfth century, 
and extending to 1868-69, is the feudal period of Jap- 
anese history, in which the political constitution of the 
empire assumes a more complicated phase. The Mi- 
kado, still the divine ruler and source of all authority, 
remains theoretically the head of the state, and the 
kuge nominally retain their offices and dignities. 


But, practically, the governing power was gradually 
usurped by the great military barons, and in 1603 
passed definitely into the hands of the Tokugawa 
family. Thereafter, for over 250 years, the succes- 
sive heads of this house, like the Mayors of the palace 
of the Merovingian dynasty, ruled the country under 
the title of Shogun. The Shogun was but one of a 
number of military chieftains or barons, equal in 
rank but of unequal possessions and power, called 
dainiio, who had acquired their lands by the sword, 
and whose vassals, the samurai, constituted the mili- 
tary class. Prior to 1603 the country had been devas- 
tated by the struggles of these great feudal lords for 
supremacy; but with the accession to power of the 
Tokugawa family began an era of peace, which lasted 
till the restoration of the Mikado in 1868-69. In 
this second period, then, we have a nominal sovereign, 
the secluded Mikado; an impoverished nobility, the 
kuge, of about one hundred and fifty families; the 
military barons or dainiio, two hundred and sixty- 
eight in number, enjoying independent authority 
within their own dominions, but acknowledging by 
certain acts the supremacy of the Shogun, in whose 
government they shared; the samurai, four hundred 
thousand families of military retainers, devoted to the 
chiefs from whom they received their pensions; and 
finally the heimin, a vast population without social 
or political rank, the laboring classes of the empire. 
Towards the close of this period the power of the 
shogunate began to wane, not through any effort of 
the Mikado to resume the direction of public affairs, 
but through jealousy of the Shogun on the part of the 
daimio and the irritation caused by his interference 
in the internal affairs of their respective principali- 


ties. This feeling was most intense among the great 
clans of the southwest, and especially in the province 
of Satsuma, whose lord was the hereditary foe of the 
Tokugawas and whose samurai were renowned for 
their independence and military spirit. It is proba- 
ble that the desire of the disaffected daimio of the 
southwest either to reduce the Shogun to their own 
level as vassals of the Mikado, or to perpetuate the 
shogunate in the person of one of their own number, 
would have led to some political change independent 
of all foreign intervention. 

However this may be, the assumption of treaty re- 
lations by the Shogun in 1858 with foreign powers, 
relations repudiated by the Mikado and opposed to 
the traditional policy of national seclusion, intensified 
the prevailing discontent and brought matters to a 
crisis. It is a notable fact that while the avowed pur- 
pose of the revolution was the overthrow of the sho- 
gunate and the restoration of the Mikado to supreme 
authority, in order that the country, thus presenting 
a united front to the foreign barbarians, might expel 
them from its borders, no sooner was the revolution 
effected than its leaders began to take steps towards 
the adoption of western civilization and the entrance 
of Japan into the comity of nations. These leaders 
had utilized the feeling of hatred against foreigners 
to destroy the shogunate and establish a centralized 
government, and while the intent of a majority of 
their supporters had been the expulsion of foreigners 
and a return to the old days of national isolation, 
the real directors of the movement were ready to re- 
construct the national policy on the basis of European 
civilization. They had been convinced by the bom- 
bardments of Kagoshima and Shimonoseki of the futil- 


ity of any attempt to exclude the west by force. 
Many of them, moreover, were students of western 
history, philosophy, and science, and with the charac- 
teristic readiness of the Japanese to appropriate from 
any source what they believe to be for the benefit of 
the country, after the fall of the Shogun they not only 
repudiated that portion of the original programme of 
the malcontents which related to foreign intercourse, 
but openly advocated the Europeanization of Japan. 
From this policy, in the face of formidable difficulties, 
and of an opposition which did not hesitate at rebel- 
lion and assassination, they have never swerved. The 
principal obstacle to centralization lay in the feudal 
system, and the first requisite was /the disappearance 
of the clans as separate units in the political system 
and the abolition of the hereditary fiefs and privileges 
of the daimio. In 1869 the four great princes of 
Satsuma, Choshu, Tosa, and Hizen addressed a me- 
morial to the Mikado in which they acknowledged 
his ownership of the soil and formally surrendered 
their possessions and territorial rights. Their exam- 
ple was followed by the lesser clans, the titles of court 
prince (kuge) and feudal noble (daimio) were abol- 
ished, and steps were taken for the establishment of 
uniform laws throughout the empire. One after an- 
other, in rapid succession, the props of feudalism were 
cut away. The country was divided into prefectures, 
and a centralized bureaucracy replaced the local ad- 
ministration of the clans. Officials were appointed 
irrespective of their clans or residence. The social 
disabilities of the lower classes were removed. A 
general law, providing for the organization of a na- 
tional army by conscription, destroyed the samurai as 
a military class. The Mikado emerged from his se- 


elusion, transferred the capital from Kyoto to Tokyo, 
and solemnly promised a deliberative assembly and 
representative institutions. 

When Mr. Neesima landed at Yokohama, December 
6, 1874, the railway connecting Tokyo and Kyoto 
had been commenced and was in operation between 
Yokohama and the capital; a national line of steam- 
ships plied between the principal ports, and the 
important points of the coast were provided with light- 
houses; a general telegraphic system had been inau- 
gurated, and a postal service modeled on that of the 
United States had been extended over the entire em- 
pire, excepting only the island of Yezo ; the imperial 
mint had been opened at Osaka; the navy had been 
reorganized under English guidance, and the creation 
of an army on European models had been begun ; the 
dockyards and machine shops of the naval station 
at Yokosuka had been established, and the arsenal 
founded at Toky5 ; European dress had been adopted 
by government officials, the European calendar intro- 
duced; Japanese journalism was already a factor in 
the formation of public opinion, and the foundations 
of a comprehensive educational system had been laid. 

The rate at which these changes were effected is as- 
tonishing, but the fact of this wholesale adoption of 
western institutions is not in itself inconsistent with 
the Japanese character. Their experience with for- 
eigners had not, it is true, been a happy one. Early 
contact with the Jesuits, who brought the spirit of the 
Inquisition, with the Dutch and Portuguese traders, 
who introduced the slave-trade, new forms of disease, 
gunpowder, and tobacco, was the beginning of an ag- 
gressive policy dictated by commercial and selfish in- 
terests whose results were fatal to the peace of society. 


The deep-seated hatred of foreigners to which this 
intercourse led, and the persecutions which followed, 
can occasion no surprise to the student of Japanese 
history during this period. On the other hand, the 
Japanese have always shown a readiness to adopt 
what is good from without, and the genius to adapt 
what they borrow to their own peculiar needs. In 
art, religion, and literature, the influence of their 
neighbors so predominates that examination of their 
civilization leaves little that can be called indigenous 
save those changes wrought in the transplanted ele- 
ments of Chinese and Indian civilization by the envi- 
roning conditions of their new home. 

Mr. Neesima returned to Japan at a time when the 
elements of conservatism were gathering in the storm 
which burst upon the country three years later in the 
Satsuma rebellion. It was in fact impossible for a 
feudal society to undergo a transformation so radical 
and so rapid without the throes incidental to the birth 
of a new order of things. The great majority of the 
people were unprepared for so sudden a change and 
too ignorant to appreciate the reasons which dictated 
the policy of the liberal statesmen. Certain of the 
daimio found that the movement they themselves had 
inaugurated involved consequences unforeseen. The 
restoration of the Mikado was now perceived to mean 
a centralization in which all local dignity and author- 
ity was lost. Customs of dress, habits of life, social 
privileges, all that was consecrated by the past and 
associated with the national greatness were passing 
away. The recruitment of an army by subscription 
from all ranks was the degradation of a class long 
accustomed only to military and ceremonial duties, 
and a life of comparative ease and pleasure, secure in 


the possession of fixed revenues, but never forced to 
occupation, which had always been despised. Reso- 
lute as was the government in its policy of regenera- 
tion, it had been obliged to exercise caution, and this 
to such an extent that, seven years after the restoration, 
the province of Satsuma was practically an imperium 
in imperio, where everything possible was being done 
to resist the unification of the empire and where in- 
dependent military preparations were going on upon 
a large scale. 

The prevailing political discontent was accompanied 
by a feeling of irritation against Christianity, in re- 
gard to which the government had adopted a tempo- 
rizing policy. There can be no question that the 
more enlightened of the Japanese leaders had been 
impressed by the fact that the civilization which they 
admired was a Christian civilization. On the other 
hand they were more anxious to be strong than to be 
Christian, and in dealing with the anti-foreign ele- 
ment were forced to conciliate the fanatical spirit of 
popular religious belief. Long after the engine had 
disturbed the quiet of Japanese valleys, the edicts 
against the corrupt sect of Jesus remained posted in 
the public thoroughfares. The popular feeling of op- 
position to Christianity was, however, an inheritance 
from a remote past, and was far more a matter of sen- 
timent than of conviction. Shintoism, the national 
religion, possessed none of the elements of aggressive 
strength, hardly even the power of resistance. With- 
out dogmas or moral code or sacred books, a vague 
worship, of nature and one's ancestors, rather than a 
religion, it had offered no real resistance to the intro- 
duction of Buddhism from China, and its influence 
upon the conduct of life was, as compared with that of 
Buddhism and Confucianism, a mere shadow. 


The year 1700 had seen a literary revival of pure 
Shintoism. This movement was purely patriotic and 
political in its nature, and in its condemnation of Bud- 
dhism, Confucianism, and all foreign influences gener- 
ally, fostered in the public mind the desire for the fall 
of the shogunate and a return to the golden age lying 
back of feudalism. The disestablishment of Bud- 
dhism, therefore, and the installation of Shintoism as 
the state religion at the time of the Mikado's restora- 
tion, were natural results of causes long in action ; but 
with the accomplishment of this its political mission 
Shintoism itself as a religion practically expired. The 
opposition to Christianity made by Buddhism was, 
however, far more energetic. Received from China in 
the sixth century, it offered to the religious nature of 
the people all of which Shintoism was destitute, mo- 
tives, penalties, functions, a profound philosophy, an 
ethical code, and an imposing ritual. Diplomatically 
admitting the Shinto gods into its Pantheon, in con- 
junction with Confucianism, whose practical rules for 
the guidance of conduct in the social relations of life 
were so eminently adapted to a feudal society, it grad- 
ually formed the basis of education and recast the po- 
litical constitution of the empire. If the resistance of 
this aggressive faith has proved less stubborn than ex- 
pected, it is because of the eminently practical char- 
acter of the Japanese mind. It cares little for specu- 
lative inquiry and lacks interest in questions apart 
from their practical bearings. Buddhistic philosophy 
made no deep impression upon the Japanese mind and 
failed to rouse the national sympathies, and such op- 
position as Christianity has encountered has been that 
of the priesthood rather than that of the people. 

On his arrival at Yokohama, Mr. Neesima's first 


desire was, naturally, to visit his aged parents, from 
whom he had now been separated for nearly eleven 
years, and who had removed from Tokyo to the castle 
town of Annaka. He accordingly set out at once by 
jinrikisha, a light two-wheeled vehicle drawn by a 
man, a conveyance which had been introduced during 
his absence. 


ANSAKA, JAPAN, December 22, 1874. 

I have informed you of my safe arrival in Yoko- 
hama, where I stopped only one night and half a day, 
going to Tokyo on the 27th. I left Tokyo on the 
same afternoon for home, where I arrived on the mid- 
night of the 28th. I traveled in a jinrikisha (cart 
drawn by men) twenty hours without taking a least 
rest except for meals. I hired three men for the pur- 
pose, one for myself and two for my baggage. They 
ate five times in twenty hours, spending nearly an 
hour for each meal. They ran sixty miles within fif- 
teen hours, four miles for an hour. It was my inten- 
tion to remain in Yokohama three days. But when I 
once stepped on the dry land, my dear native soil, I 
could not wait even three days. Hence I hurried 
towards home. When I came here it was midnight. 
Therefore I disliked to disturb my parents' sleep, and 
slept in an inn in this town. The following morning 
I sent word to my father. Then I came home and 
was welcomed by my aged parents, sisters, neighbors, 
and old acquaintances. My father was ill for three 
days and could not move himself on account of rheu- 
matism. But when he heard of my safe arrival he 
rose up and welcomed me with the fatherly tender- 
ness. When I hailed him he stooped down without a 


word. I noticed his tears dropping on the floor. My 
old acquaintances gathered at home and requested me 
to tell them all my experiences in the United States. 
Since I came here callers come, not simply from this 
town, but also from the neighboring towns and villages 
lying within seven or eight miles from here. They 
have kept me busy all tunes. They come here by 
hearing of my humble name, hoping to see me even 
for a few minutes. They looked as sheep without a 
shepherd. I find it almost impossible to send them 
back without some spiritual food. 

Soon after my arrival I presented your kind letter 
to my father, but for a long time I could not translate 
it for him, because when I tried to read it I could not 
help thinking of the scene of my last departure from 
you, and the very thought prevented me to speak 
freely. Another day I gathered my parents and sis- 
ters and succeeded in reading your letter to them. 
Before I got half through all of them began to weep, 
being much affected by your parental kindness shown 
to me. My father told me you were our saviour and 
our gods. Then I told him he must not make his 
American friends gods. If he feels grateful for their 
kind deeds he must worship that one God, Creator of 
Universe, and Saviour of mankind, who is the God of 
his American friends. I mentioned still further to 
him that you became so good and kind even to a wan- 
dering stranger because you are the worshipers of true 
God and the humble followers of Christ; that you 
saved me from a miserable condition and gave me 
necessary education that I might become a teacher of 
glad tidings to our benighted people ; that you loved 
our people as much as your own American people. 
Since that time my father discontinued to worship the 


Japanese gods and his ancestors. By his consent I 
took down all the paper, wooden, earthen, and brass 
gods from shelves where they were kept, and burned 
them up. I send a few paper gods to you which my 
mother threw over in the fireplace. There are no 
gods nor images in this house now. I trust they will 
be worshipers of true God hereafter. How thankful 
I am that our lives have been spared these past ten 
years and we are permitted to meet once more before 
we depart from this world. I hope you will pray for 
me that I may keep myself nearer and closer to my 
Saviour and make an entire consecration for his cause. 
Beside my own friends my humble labor within 
three weeks in this place has been wonderfully blessed. 
You will doubtless be surprised at my success when I 
give you its account. On the 2d inst. I took a trip to 
a town where iron mines were recently discovered with 
eight of my acquaintances. We stopped in an inn 
near the place and on the following morning we awoke 
very early and began to talk some nonsense. Then I 
began to preach without any forms. There was one 
miserable drunkard among them. During my dis- 
course he listened to me very attentively and kept 
himself perfectly quiet. Since that time he began to 
reform himself entirely. He called on me another 
day and told me that since he stopped drinking he 
can arise early in the morning and work better than 
ever before. I have heard of another case of reform, 
and quite a number of others are seriously thinking 
of it. I preached several times in the school-house, 
and also to small audiences in different families. A 
week before last Sabbath I preached to a large audi- 
ence in a Buddhist Temple. All the priests in that 
community came to listen to the preaching of the new 


religion, and also the whole body of the magistrates 
of Takasaki, a neighboring city of 15,000 inhabitants. 
Day before yesterday I was invited by an official in 
the next village to spend the night with him. After 
the supper he gathered the whole family in the parlor 
and requested me to tell them about Jesus Christ. I 
began to talk at 8 o'clock and continued till half past 
ten that night. Thirty men in this town and a few 
men from outside took up a collection for purchasing 
some Christian books for themselves. They are hun- 
gry and thirsty for the Christian truth. I wrote Rev. 
D. C. Greene a week ago for permission to remain here 
still longer, but he persuaded me to go to Osaka next 
Sabbath. I find here everything ready for the gos- 
pel. If I continued to labor here two or three months 
I have no doubt that most of the above will become 
followers of Christ. It is veiy painful to leave this 
hungry flock. This community is entirely free from 
bad foreign influences, and it may be a more desirable 
place for me to establish a Christian society than Kobe 
or Osaka. 


ANKARA, December 24, 1874. 

Dear Friends, Yours of the 20th of last October 
was received through my son. I congratulate you for 
your good health and prosperity. 

When my son went to your country as a helpless 
wanderer, you did save him from falling into misery, 
treated him as your own son, and gave him all neces- 
sary wants. I am greatly indebted to you for your 
kind letter with which you have sent my son back to 
me once more, acquainted with' the knowledge of God. 
When I saw him after a long separation my heart was 


filled with joy and I could scarcely speak with him. 
[Following the practice so universally resorted to in 
Japanese society to prevent the extinction of families, 
after Mr. Neesima's escape and before the news of his 
safety was received, his father had adopted a young 
man of the province as the heir of the house and fu- 
ture head of the family.] Although he is my own 
son, I would no longer call him my son, but treat him 
as if he is sent from God. I daily listen to his in- 
structions, and we have just begun to worship the true 

Please rejoice with my son and also with us that the 
people in this place who have been living in midnight 
darkness have just awakened and opened their eyes to 
see the true path which they should follow. We hope 
and trust that a glorious time will soon come by the 
means of the gospel truth. Although I desire to say 
many things, my pen and paper do fail to do so. I 
wish this brief note to give you reply for your kind 
letter, and also to express my hearty thanks for your 
kindness shown to my son. 

Please take good care for your health. My family 
unite with me in sending you their warmest regards 
and love. 

With hundred bows, 


This is partly direct translation and partly ideal. 
I find it exceedingly hard to translate twisted oriental 
writing into straightforward American idea. My 
father wrote it without any suggestion. I came home 
just in a right time, for I found him getting quite 
poor. He has no special income now. I gave him 
the money you gave me, and also some of my own 


for fixing up his old house. I was hoping to take my 
parents to Kobe, but I found it best to leave them, as 
the living is much cheaper here. 

J. H. N. 

At its meeting at Pittsburgh in 1869 the Ameri- 
can Board had decided to establish a mission in Japan, 
and as Toky5 in the north and Nagasaki in the south 
were already occupied by other societies, its first mis- 
sionary, Mr. Greene, was stationed in the central por- 
tion of the empire at Kobe. He was soon after fol- 
lowed by Mr. O. H. Gulick, who was located at 
Osaka, and in 1873 eighteen missionaries of the Board 
were on the ground. The translation of the Bible 
into the vernacular had been vigorously begun in 
1872, but the version of the New Testament was not 
finished until 1880, while that of the Old Testament 
was completed only in 1887. The existence of Chi- 
nese versions had, however, rendered the Bible acces- 
sible to the educated class. The first Protestant 
church had been organized at Yokohama in_1872, 
and there were also small churches at Kobe, Osaka, 
and Tokyo, at the tune of Mr. Neesima's arrival; but 
nothing had been accomplished outside of the treaty 
ports, and in his visit to Annaka Mr. Neesima was 
the first to carry the gospel to the interior. His bold 
utterances and open violation of the edicts still in 
force against Christianity led the governor of the prov- 
ince to visit Tokyo to consult the authorities. Fortu- 
nately, through his connection with the Iwakura Em- 
bassy, Mr. Neesima was well known to those in power, 
his work was not interfered with, and he was thus left 
free to originate a movement which resulted in the 
foundation of one of the most thoroughly Christian 


communities in Japan, a community which within 
a few years contained several self -supporting churches, 
and two thirds of whose delegation to the Imperial 
Diet in 1890 were Christians. It was with great re- 
luctance that he left Annaka for his station. But in 
reality he had accomplished far more than he realized, 
for when he set out for Osaka he had planted the 
spirit of Christianity in the heart of Japan. 

On his way through Tokyo he interested several 
friends in his plans for a Christian college, and in 
Yokohama preached in a union meeting, the first Jap- 
anese to address a foreign audience in the English 
language. The same evening he spoke to native hear- 
ers, and writes : " I find it a great delight to tell of 
Christ to my own people." 

Arriving in Osaka January 22d, he was welcomed 
by Mr. Gordon. The Mission had already been in- 
formed by the Foreign Secretary of the Board of the 
fund subscribed towards a training-school for Chris- 
tian workers, but the opposition to Christianity was so 
strong that such a school seemed to all a thing of the 
distant future. In order to escape injurious foreign 
influences it was Mr. Neesima's plan to establish the 
school in Osaka outside the treaty limits, and with this 
in view he conferred at once with the governor of the 
city, a man bitterly opposed to Christianity, and who, 
a short time before, had been concerned in the per- 
secution of the survivors of the Jesuit mission at Na- 
gasaki. These Christians, numbering over four thou- 
sand, had preserved for two hundred years the rite of 
baptism, certain forms of prayers, and a few religious 
books, and, refusing to abandon their faith, had been 
forcibly removed from their native villages. Scattered 
as exiles over the empire for six years, they had, in 


1873, been set at liberty and allowed to return to their 
homes. At Osaka, Mr. Neesima obtained the prom- 
ise of 6,000 yen from a native merchant, but the gov- 
ernor, while sanctioning the establishment of a school, 
would not permit the employment of missionaries as 
teachers. Discouraged by the result of his efforts in 
Osaka, Mr. Neesima's eyes turned towards the sacred 
city of Kyoto, and the Mission reluctantly consented 
to the location of the school at that place, provided 
the necessary authority should be granted. Mr. Nee- 
sima was at this time contending not only with the 
opposition of the authorities, but also with that of the 
Mission itself. It was of course impossible for its 
members to conform to the condition of the government 
which required them to abandon their distinctive work 
as preachers of the gospel in becoming teachers in a 
Japanese school. Their thought, too, was naturally 
centred on a theological training-school for the educa- 
tion of native evangelists, while Mr. Neesima was 
convinced that nothing less than a broad collegiate 
course would win the sympathy of the class he wished 
to reach. In March, 1875, he writes: "I fully be- 
lieve we shall not prosper in our work unless we have 
a collegiate institution in addition to a training-school. 
I begged for this at the last meeting of the Board. 
But the Mission wishes to use the fund for a training- 
school only. I am willing to agree to this if only they 
will teach anything to satisfy the craving desire of our 
youth for knowledge. If we simply teach theology 
and the Bible I fear the best Japanese youth will not 
stay with us. They want modern science also." 

Moreover, Mr. Neesima's plan for the occupation 
of Kyoto was judged premature and chimerical by 
many of his associates. Until the removal of the cap- 


ital to Tokyo in 1868, this city had been the residence 
of the Mikado for nearly eleven centuries, and was 
still the literary and spiritual centre of the empire. 
Situated in the heart of the main island, in a fertile 
valley circled by mountains, it was also the centre of 
the best tea-producing district, and had long been 
preeminent for its silk and pottery industries. As 
the home of the Mikado it had been the scene of 
many important political events. Here had been 
quartered the great officials of the land with their 
retinues, and as the dwelling-place of a heaven-de- 
scended sovereign the city had been for generations 
the resort of pilgrims, pleasure-seekers, and amateurs 
of antique lore and mysteries. Its material prosper- 
ity had suffered by the removal of the government, 
and several exhibitions of products from the various 
provinces of the empire had been held in the grounds 
and buildings of its temples to promote industrial 
activity and to offer some substitute for the van- 
ished attractions of the court. These expositions 
had been of great service in breaking down the bar- 
riers imposed by the feudal system, a system which 
had checked the industrial growth of the nation by 
artificial constraints, and interfered with any gen- 
eral comparison or examination of the products of 
widely separated districts. The conversion of the 
sanctuary of the imperial residence, where the exhi- 
bition of 1872 was held, into a repository of trade 
and commerce, brought old and new Japan, the Past 
and the Present, face to face. The reverence at- 
tached to the person of the Mikado had been funda- 
mental in the thought of the people, to whom their 
sovereign was literally a god. His name could not be 
uttered nor his countenance seen even by those of the 


most exalted rank. During his journeys the silence 
of death preceded him, for the highways were deserted 
and the houses closed. Even his dwelling had be- 
come associated with his personality, and only its 
outer official apartments were accessible to his cour- 
tiers, those in which he resided being visible only to 
members of the imperial family. The opening of its 
doors to the populace, the abandonment of its se- 
cluded gardens to the crowd, was the surrender of the 
most sacred spot in the empire. 

Permission to visit Kyoto had been rarely granted 
to foreigners, but the opening of the city for one 
hundred days at the time of these exhibitions had 
prepared the way for the accomplishment of Mr. 
Neesima's plans. 

There was then living in Kyoto Yamamoto Ka- 
kunia, counselor of the Kyoto-Fu, a highly educated 
man, but blind, and unable to walk by reason of 
paralysis. Several members of the Mission had be- 
come acquainted with him when the city was opened 
to visitors, and one of them had presented him with a 
Chinese translation of the Evidences of Christianity. 
Of this work he said to Mr. Neesima: "It has done 
me great good. It has cleared away many of my 
doubts regarding Christianity, and has also solved a 
difficult problem which has for years oppressed me. 
In my younger days I sought to render some service 
to my country, and to this end devoted myself to mil- 
itary tactics. But feeling this too small a matter, 
turned my attention to jurisprudence, hoping to se- 
cure better justice to the people. But after long study 
and observation I found law had its limitations. It 
could indeed set up barriers, but it could not renew 
the heart. If its restrictions are removed, men will 


steal, lie, and murder. Law cannot prevent evil 
thinking. But day has dawned for me, and I now 
see the path, utterly unknown before, which I have 
long been unconsciously seeking." When, therefore, 
in April, Mr. Neesima laid his plans before the gov- 
ernor of Kyoto, Mr. Yamamoto gave them his warm 
support, and through his influence the governor was 
subsequently led to sanction the establishment of a 
school in which science and Christianity should be 
taught. In June, 1875, Mr. Neesima visited Kyoto 
again with Dr. Davis, and bought of Mr. Yamamoto a 
lot of five and one half acres, the site of the future 
Doshisha. It was admirably situated for the purpose, 
in a quiet and healthy district of the city between a 
large temple grove and the vacant palace of the Mi- 
kado, having formerly been the site of the residence 
of the Prince of Satsuma. Although the approval of 
the local authorities had been obtained, that of the 
central government was still necessary, as also per- 
mission for a missionary to teach in the school and 
reside in the city. 

Accordingly in August Mr. Neesima set out for 
Tokyo to present his petition in person. He had al- 
ready written to Mr. Tanaka, now minister of educa- 
tion, and had received the promise of his influence in 
behalf of the school. On reaching the capital he con- 
ferred at once with the minister, as also with his old 
friends Mori and Kido, urging the general cause of 
religious freedom, and it is safe to say that the success 
of his effort to penetrate this stronghold of Buddhism 
was due to the esteem and confidence in which he was 
held by these liberal statesmen. After many inter- 
views and a summer of much anxiety the petition was 
finally granted, with the caution that nothing should 


be done to arouse popular prejudice, and on October 
19th Dr. Davis entered Kyoto with his family. For- 
eigners not being entitled to hold property beyond 
the treaty limits, a company consisting of Mr. Nee- 
sima and Mr. Yamamoto was formed, and the name 
Doshisha, meaning One Purpose, or One Endeavor 
Company was adopted. The school of eight pupils 
was opened with prayer November 29, 1875, in Mr. 
Neesima's house. "I never shall forget," says Dr. 
Davis, "Mr. Neesima's earnest, tender, tearful words 
that morning." The regular exercises of the school 
were held in a building hired for the purpose. On 
December 4th the number of scholars was twelve, and 
during the winter increased to forty. 

This was a winter of trial and discouragement. The 
year was one of political disquietude and apprehen- 
sion, and the government was desirous of avoiding in 
every way whatever was calculated to rouse the ultra- 
conservative spirit. The Hizen revolt, the agrarian 
disturbances growing out of the law requiring the pay- 
ment of the land tax in money instead of in kind, the 
discontent caused by the pension commutation act, 
and the conspiracies of Choshu, Akidzuki, and Ku- 
mamoto, foreshadowed the coming struggle with ex- 
piring feudalism, a struggle for which the authorities 
were preparing, but which they were anxious not to 
precipitate. The followers of Shimadzu Saburo, the 
haughty and powerful chief of the Satsuma clan, were 
at this time gathering in Kyoto, and a spark might 
fire the mine which had long been in preparation by 
the Satsuma leaders. On taking up their residence 
in Kyoto both Mr. Neesima and Mr. Davis had begun 
Sunday services in their house, preaching and teach- 
ing the Bible to audiences which within a few weeks 


numbered sixty persons. These services provoked the 
opposition of the Buddhist priests, who in November 
forwarded a strong protest to the central government. 
The owner of the building rented for school purposes 
gave notice that he required it for his own use. On 
several occasions Mr. Neesima was refused an audi- 
ence by the governor, whose friendly attitude had 
become one of open hostility, and Mr. Neesima was 
finally summoned to explain the meaning of Seisho 
(Bible) which occurred in the programme of study. 
The result of this opposition was a request from Mr. 
Tanaka that Bible exegesis should be omitted from the 
list of studies. Compliance with this request allayed 
the excitement, and by permission of the governor 
Christianity continued to be taught under the name of 
Moral Science. 

During all this time Mr. Neesima was also busily 
engaged in evangelistic work. July 7, 1875, he 
writes: "I preached in Osaka last Sabbath and re- 
ceived two interesting men into our church. One of 
them is an influential native physician residing in the 
suburb of Fushimi, who has fifty pupils to whom he 
lectures on Physiology, Chemistry, Anatomy, etc., 
and who daily gathers his neighbors into his house for 
Bible study." 

This gentleman, with those who frequented their 
gatherings, were at once summoned before the Kyoto 
magistrates, and future meetings of this nature were 
forbidden. The conversation of the physician with 
the official, as taken down at the time by Mr. Davis, 
was as follows : 

"This Davis came up here to teach an English 
school, did he not? " 



"Then he is like a man who has a license to sell 
deer meat, but who sells dog meat." 

" Well, is it dog meat ? I used to think so, but on 
tasting of it I find it is a great deal better than deer 
meat; and I would like to ask you one question. 
This religion is allowed to be taught publicly in Kobe, 
in Osaka, and in twenty or thirty places in Tokyo. 
How is it that here in Kyoto a man is not allowed to 
hear it in his own house ? Are we not all under the 
same government? I do not understand it." 

"Well, I do not say that this religion is either 
good or bad, and I do not say that you and your 
friends cannot hear it in your house; but you let in 
the common people, the lower classes, who cannot un- 
derstand it. This we cannot allow. We have good 
and sufficient religions here in Japan ; we do not want 
any more. We have Confucianism for scholars like 
you, and Buddhism for the masses." 

" I would like to ask you one thing. If Confucian- 
ism is an all-sufficient religion, why is it, since its 
founder lived hundreds of years before Christ and 
taught during a long life, that it has not spread 
beyond China and Japan? And if Buddhism is an 
all-sufficient religion, started by Buddha hundreds of 
years before Christ, and taught by him through a long 
life, how is it that it has not spread beyond India, 
China, and Japan ? And if Christianity is a bad re- 
ligion, how is it, since its founder only taught three 
years and was put to death when he was thirty -three 
years old, that it has spread all over Europe and 
America, and is spreading all over Africa and Asia, 
and all the islands of the sea? " 

"We do not say that it is either good or bad. But 
you must not allow people to meet at your house, and 
you are discharged." 


Owing to this action of the authorities work in Fu- 
shimi was suspended; but in February Mr. Neesima 
was invited to Otsu, a city of considerable commercial 
importance east of Kyoto, where, by permission of 
the vice-governor, he began a series of Sunday ser- 

During the summer of 1875 Mr. Neesima had be- 
come engaged to Yamamoto Yaye, the sister of the 
counselor to the Kyoto-Fu, and a teacher in a govern- 
ment school for girls in the city. Her engagement 
to a Christian led to her immediate discharge. In 
announcing this attachment to his friends in America, 
Mr. Neesima said : 

"She is somewhat like her own blind brother, 
afraid of no one when convinced of her duty. She 
has often appeared before the governor in behalf of 
her school when its other officers were afraid to do so. 
Since becoming a Christian she has often spoken of 
the truth to her pupils, and she is now discharged by 
the governor because of his fear that they will learn 
of Christianity through her and be removed from the 
school by their parents. I do not know when our 
marriage will take place. I will let our missionary 
brethren decide for us. I have been living in hotels 
and private houses, but have recently hired a house 
near which, separated only by a garden, is another 
small one which I am going to rent for my aged 

On January 2, 1876, the ordinances of baptism and 
the Lord's Supper were celebrated for the first time 
in Kyoto, and the marriage took place on the 3d at Dr. 
Davis's house. Mr. Neesima writes January 6th: 

"After the ceremony refreshments were brought in, 
and every one seemed happy. It was the first mar- 


riage of a native Christian in this place. I ought to 
have informed you of this event before it took place, 
but I have been busy beyond my strength. I hope 
you who are always kind and tender to me as my 
parents are, will pardon me for this delay." 

In March, 1876, the passes authorizing Drs. Taylor 
and Learned to reside and teach in Kyoto passes 
which Mr. Neesima had for five months been striving 
to obtain were received ; but the Bible was still ex- 
cluded from the course of study, and some members 
of the Mission questioned the wisdom of permanently 
occupying Kyoto under such conditions. At a special 
meeting held at Osaka in March, a vote to remain was 
passed with much misgiving, and in June the erection 
of two buildings was also voted, but reluctantly, for 
the approval of the government was considered more 
than doubtful. Even after the buildings were com- 
pleted and dedicated, the Mission was inclined to 
force the issue of Bible teaching, and, if unsuccessful, 
to abandon the station and leave the city. In view of 
the hostile attitude of the authorities, and the fact 
that an institution from which the Bible was excluded 
could not properly be called a training-school for the 
education of a native ministry, the hesitancy to ap- 
propriate money given for this purpose and to commit 
the Board to an experiment whose success was so 
doubtful, was entirely natural. The location of the 
school beyond the foreign concession required that its 
proprietorship should remain in Japanese hands, and 
this also caused dissatisfaction. But Mr. Neesima 
was content to hold the ground already gained, firm 
in his faith of ultimate success. June 6th he writes 
to Mr. Hardy : 

"We are hated by the magistrates and priests, but 


we have planted the standard of truth here and will 
never more retreat. To no one else but you will I say 
that this Christian school could have no existence here 
if God had not brought this poor runaway boy to 
your kind hands. The only way to get along in this 
country is to work courageously, even under many 

What these difficulties were may be inferred from 
the following extract from the " Sketch of the Life of 
Reverend J. H. Neesima," written by Dr. Davis and 
published in Kyoto : 

"This state of things led to continued criticism of 
the school and of Mr. Neesima as its virtual Japanese 
head. He felt these most keenly. He loved the 
members of the Mission, and he was ever loyal to the 
Mission, anything which seemed to imply the contrary 
paining him beyond measure. So great did the trial 
become that in September, 1876, the members of the 
station sent a letter to the Mission in order to remove 
some of these misunderstandings." 

In this letter they stated that while Mr. Neesima 
and Mr. Yamamoto were the nominal proprietors of 
the school, its management had been left entirely in 
the hands of the resident missionaries; that none of 
the details relating to the course of study or the con- 
duct of the exercises had been referred to Mr. Yama- 
moto ; that Mr. Neesima had invariably followed the 
suggestions of his foreign associates and had consulted 
them even in the expenditure of funds subscribed 
through private channels, whose use was wholly at his 
own discretion ; that in the organization and conduct 
of the school they had been as free as if there had been 
no Japanese proprietors, and that Mr. Neesima' s 
whole effort was to conform to their advice and sug- 


The estimation in which Mr. Neesima was held by 
his immediate associates of the station is seen from 
these extracts from their letters to Mr. Hardy written 
in 1875-76 : 

"Your contribution of Mr. Neesima to our Mission 
and the cause of Christ in Japan is one whose value 
we feel no multiple of the sum you have contributed 
or invested in his education can represent. We are 
charmed by his thoroughly Christian spirit. ... I 
cannot say a tithe of what is in my heart. . . . There 
seems no doubt but that his whole life, being, and pur- 
pose are consecrated to the Master for the redemption 
of his peqple. . . . He is profoundly grateful to you 
and to the American Board for what you and it have 
done for him and his land ; and he accepts the will of 
the Board and of our Mission as God's will, no matter 
how it differs from his own. ... If he is guided 
aright by God's Spirit and kept firm to his purpose 
and work, if his health is spared, I feel that he is 
destined to accomplish as much perhaps as all our 
Mission put together. . . . We need him for a larger 
place than a pastorate. We need him as a teacher 
in the training-school. He is better fitted for some 
department of teaching there than any foreigner can 
ever be. We also need him as an evangelist, not to 
use his influence always in the same place, but to go 
about awakening interest. . . . For a long time after 
his return we feared he would break entirely down. 
He was able to sleep but very little. -He told me sev- 
eral times during those first few months that when he 
thought about these millions of his people passing into 
eternity without a knowledge of Christ it seemed as 
if he would go crazy. Since the opening of the year 
he has gradually improved and is sleeping better. 


This is partly due to the successful starting of the 
school and his steady work there, but largely also to 
his marriage and settlement in a happy home of his 

The house above referred to was provided through 
the generosity of Mr. J. M. Sears of Boston, who also 
sent money for the erection of a chapel. It was for 
several years impossible to secure preaching places in 
the city, and during this tune services were held in 
Mr. Neesima's house and in the adjoining chapel, 
where two hundred people often assembled to hear the 

On September 18, 1876, the new buildings were 
dedicated. Of this event Mr. Neesima writes to Mr. 
and Mrs. Hardy : 

" I must express my heartfelt thanks to you for your 
having led and educated me in such a way that I might 
found a Christian institution on my dearly beloved 
soil. As you know, we started our school in a hired 
house, but having found this very inconvenient, we 
began the process of building two months ago. The 
buildings are three in number, two of which contain 
recitation rooms and twenty -four rooms for students ; 
while the other is a small structure and is used for a 
kitchen and dining-room. They are simple, but solid, 
and look very pretty in the large open space about 
them. We were permitted to dedicate them to the 
Lord the day before yesterday. The exercises con- 
sisted of a prayer of invocation in English and a prayer 
of dedication in Japanese ; a sketch of the history of 
the school, and the singing of hymns in both lan- 
guages. Addresses in English were made by Mr. 
Doane and Mr. Learned, and in Japanese by Mr. 
Yamamoto and myself. All but two of our Kyoto 


Mission were present, and about seventy students, be- 
sides others from outside. Mr. Yamamoto's remarks 
were brief but wonderfully appropriate. He is re- 
garded as one of our best thinkers, although bodily 
feeble and helpless. The existence of the Kyoto Mis- 
sion is largely due to him. He was convinced that an 
immoral country like Japan could not be purified by 
any other means than Christianity, and by his influ- 
ence and labor the proud and dignified governor lis- 
tened to us and at last smiled upon our efforts. In 
the dark and trying hours of last winter he stood up 
for us and did his best to persuade the governor. The 
latter made no interference with our dedication exer- 

" You will be glad to know that of our forty-seven 
boarding students more than half are Christians. 
They have come to us with the purpose of studying the 
Bible and fitting themselves for the ministry. We 
are very fortunate to get such pupils at the outset. I 
pray that this school may be the nucleus of a future 
college and university for Japan. Our mission work 
has also bright prospects, the work being chiefly car- 
ried on by our students. A third church will soon be 
formed. My aged parents now worship God instead 
of idols, and my invalid sister, who grasps spiritual 
things faster than these aged ones, takes part in the 
prayer-meetings for women held at my house. My 
wife attends the Biblical exercises in the school. We 
are perfectly happy together and I am trying to make 
my home like the Christian home I found in America." 

In September, 1876, the number in the school was 
increased by the arrival -of thirty students from the 
province of Higo in the island of Kyushu. Their ac- 
cession was an important event in the early history of 


the school. The circumstances under which they came 
were remarkable, and, in the light of the influence 
which those young men subsequently exerted upon the 
general educational and religious movement then in 
progress, acquire an additional interest. In the year 
1871 Captain L. L. Janes, formerly an officer in the 
United States army, had taken charge of a school in 
the castle town of Kumamoto. This school belonged 
to the class known as private schools, many of which 
were established at this time, especially in the south- 
west provinces, by the anti-foreign party. While of- 
fering instruction in English and modern science, this 
movement was a distinctly national one, the sole ob- 
ject of these schools being the formation of a body of 
young men who by reason of their superior training 
and intelligence might the more effectively resist for- 
eign influences and oppose the spread of western ideas. 
Kumamoto was an inland town in the centre of a prov- 
ince where the feudal spirit was still strong. Isolated 
from the influences prevailing in the treaty ports, Cap- 
tain Janes had found the hatred against Christianity 
so strong that for several months he did not dare to 
allow his faith to be known. As soon, however, as he 
deemed it prudent he began to speak of Christianity, 
and thereafter, for five years, his work in the school 
was accompanied by constant and direct religious in- 
struction. About two years after his arrival he pro- 
posed to the members of the advanced class a system- 
atic study of the New Testament, and fifteen or twenty 
young men, after consultation with the school author- 
ities, met with him twice a week for the ostensible pur- 
pose of acquiring that knowledge of Christianity which 
should the better fit them to oppose its progress. On 
the 30th of January, 1876, about forty of these young 


men went up on the Hanaoka mountain near the city 
and organized themselves into a Christian society 
under the most solemn mutual pledges to dedicate 
their lives to Christ. This stand was taken with a 
full knowledge of the consequences, for it involved 
not only the sacrifice of worldly considerations, and in 
many cases the abandonment of careers for which they 
had been preparing, but estrangement from friends 
and home, and bitter persecution. Early in January 
the Christian boys had begun to teach the lower 
classes, gathering in the school-room with their Eng- 
lish Bibles. On complaint to the authorities Captain 
Janes advised the discontinuance of this practice, and 
an apology was offered to the school manager, but the 
meetings were still held at the house of Captain Janes, 
whose course was one of tact but firmness. He as- 
sured the manager that no Christian would disobey 
any rightful order, but that if such meetings were for- 
bidden, then also the gathering of those who opposed 
Christianity and who indulged in threats of personal 
insult and violence should likewise be prohibited. 
The governor was one of seventeen who had attacked 
a party of Frenchmen, some of whom were killed, and 
had been saved from forced suicide only by the clem- 
ency of foreign officials after several of his compan- 
ions had inflicted the necessary self -punishment of 
harakiri. The well-known liberal sentiments of the 
central government, and the alarm caused by the ma- 
lignant form of private persecution adopted by the 
families of those who had embraced the Christian 
faith, probably account for the apparent indifference 
of the local authorities, who, for selfish reasons, were 
inclined to fear if not respect the policy of the T5kyo 
statesmen. The rations of all who had openly pro- 


fessed Christianity were, however, promptly stopped 
by the school manager. This action threw many en- 
tirely upon Captain Janes for support. Sharing their 
slender means in common, they organized a mess under 
his direction, preparing and serving their own food in 
the school kitchen. Meanwhile the private persecu- 
tion already referred to had been most bitter. When 
these young men arrived at Kyoto their English Bi- 
bles and the clothes they wore were their only posses- 
sions. They had been subjected to the most cruel 
treatment at the hands of their relations, and, out- 
casts from home, disowned by their friends, had liter- 
ally abandoned everything for the sake of their faith. 
In proposing their admission to the Doshisha, Captain 
Janes wrote to Dr. Davis : 

"My boys and I have been passing through unusual 
events, and the mutterings of a sharp, vindictive, and 
exciting persecution are still in the air. They have 
four of my Christian boys still shut up in their homes. 
I think the little band is practically intact. No lives 
have been taken, although that was seriously enough 
threatened, and there are no cases of harakiri yet to 
report, although a mother in one family and a father 
in another took that method of driving their sons from 
the faith. The number of faithful to the end has 
been larger than I expected. I grieve over my impris- 
oned Christian boys. The physical strength of one is 
failing, and his unthinking persecutors may kill him. 
I understand there was an auto-da-fe of his Bibles a 
few days since." 

Of Mr. Kanamori, subsequently pastor of the col- 
lege church and succeeding Mr. Neesima as acting 
principal and president of the Board of Trustees, Cap- 
tain Janes writes, June 25, 1876 : 


"The bearer is one of the Christian company here, 
of whom I have written you. He must tell you his 
own story. I will only say that he is a graduate of 
this year, and had completed the regular course' of 
study before he was taken from the school and sub- 
jected to persecution. He has received the most cruel 
and outrageous treatment at the hands of his brother, 
acting under the influence of the opposition party here, 
and has been practically a prisoner for one hundred 
and twenty days. He was made the slave of the ser- 
vants of his family, who were instructed to treat him 
as one possessed of a devil, without human rights. 
He is now practically outcast. He severs his family 
connection finally and strikes for liberty. He is a 
shorn lamb, and leaving all." 

Among other members of what came to be known 
as the Kumamoto band were Mr. Tokudomi, now a 
trustee, editor of "The People's Friend," a quarterly 
magazine published at Toky5, as also of a leading 
daily newspaper, an author also of national reputation 
and influence; Mr. Yokoi, also a trustee, pastor of a 
church in Toky5, and editor of "The Christian," the 
weekly organ of the Congregational churches in Japan, 
and of a literary journal, "The Rikug5 Zasshi; " Mr. 
Kosaki, now at the head of the Doshisha as Mr. Nee- 
sima's successor; Mr. Ebina, afterwards pastor of a 
flourishing church in Annaka, and now principal of a 
large English school at Kumamoto ; Mr. Morita, for 
eleven years a professor in the Doshisha, and Mr. 
Shimomura, at present professor of chemistry. Of 
the work done by Messrs. _Kosaki at Tokyo, Ebina 
in Kotsuke, Miyagama in Osaka, Kanamori in Oka- 
yama, and Yokoi in Shikoku, Dr. Davis says : 

" It has already changed the history of Japan. The 


coining of these young men at that early day, with 
their earnest Christian purpose, gave a tone to the 
school; and their influence was felt in moulding the 
Deshisha morally and in shaping its course of study 
from that time. They have helped to make the school 
what it is, and they came to love Mr. Neesima and to 
be loved by him as brothers." 

The record of the years intervening between 1876 
and 1884, when Mr. Neesima revisited America, is 
one of failing health, constant trial and anxiety, but 
unfaltering faith in final success. The numbers in 
the school slowly increased, but for several years the 
local opposition was so strong that few of the students 
came from the immediate vicinity. The influence of 
the Kumamoto Band brought many from the island of 
Kyushu; many anxious parents sent their boys to be 
taught in the "new way;" and the moral tone of 
the students, although they were generally despised as 
Christians, was very effective in spreading the reputa- 
tion of the school. 

In March, 1877, Mr. Neesima writes : 

"In the last communion season my dear father was 
added to our church. It was a most important event 
to us all when that aged man received baptism. He 
has been living in pagan darkness these sixty-nine 
years, and we had a constant fear that he might go 
beyond this world without the true light." 

About this time a misunderstanding arose as to the 
amount of Mr. Neesima's salary, 8500 of which it 
was arranged should be paid from the treasury of the 
Board, the remainder being supplied by Mr. Hardy. 
When the announcement to this effect was made to 
him he understood that his salary had been reduced to 
$500, and wrote Mr. Hardy : 


"I thought it rather strange that you should do so 
without giving me any notice or explanation. At any 
rate, I said, if the Prudential Committee think it best 
that I should live on a least salary and has reduced it 
down, and you think so, it must be obeyed. As I 
remain your ever obedient son I would not do any- 
thing contrary to my father's will. I told it to my 
wife, we put our heads together, and consulted how to 
reduce our expenses. We said, ' cut short this and 
that, give up our farmer who works for us in our garden 
when we need him. ' After reducing many things we 
thought we could live on that salary. I felt it rather 
hard at first, for besides ourselves I have my parents 
and one invalid sister, but afterwards I felt very nappy 
exercising self-denial for Christ's sake. I have not 
asked any missionary a reason why my salary was 
reduced, nor expressed my feeling to any one. But 
lately, I found it rather hard to live on that reduced 
amount and asked Dr. Davis whether he had heard 
anything about it. He explained to me that the 
Board authorized me to draw $500 annually from the 
mission treasury, and the balance will be sent to me 
from you. Then I found out what a mistake I had 
made. If, however, you say live on $500, I shall- say 
yes, and shall be very thankful for it. And if you 
be pleased to give me balance, I shall receive it with 
a grateful heart. I have adopted Apostle Paul's doc- 
trine: 'I shall be thankful for all things.' ' 

Exhausted by his duties, in the summer of 1877 he 
sought rest with his wife at Wakayama, from which 
place he writes July 12th: 

"We came to Osaka by rail, and hence to this 
quiet fishing village by jiiirikisha. It is about sixty 
miles southwest of Kyoto and is somewhat warmer. 


The famous orange growing country is only a few 
miles away. We came for the purpose of taking the 
sea-baths, and I find them beneficial. Here we have 
hired a small villa owned by a quite wealthy fisher- 
man and are ve'ry comfortably situated. Fish and 
vegetables are plenty. Above all we are enjoying our 
quiet. I am hoping to go fishing as soon as the rough 
weather is over. I went up the surrounding moun- 
tains soon after I came and found the scenery wonder- 
fully beautiful. As I was sitting down alone on a 
high mountain top, looking upon hills, rivers, plains, 
bays, promontories, islands, and open sea beyond, I 
could not help reflecting upon my past enjoyments 
which' I had with you at Mt. Desert. Then I bursted 
out to tears and wept silently. Every enjoyment I 
had with you seems very dear and sacred. I suppose 
fiuch enjoyment will never come to me again while I 
am in this world." 

Early in 1877 Mr. Neesima had sent, through his 
brother-in-law, Mr. Yamamoto, some books to the 
inmates of the prison at Otsu. Among these books 
was a Chinese copy of Dr. Martin's "Evidences of 
Christianity," which fell into the hands of a prisoner 
who became so much interested in it that he undertook 
its translation into Japanese for the benefit of his il- 
literate associates. Mr. Neesima gives the following 
account of what transpired : 

"Most of the prisoners are uneducated, and petty 
thieves. A lamp was allowed for evening study. 
This was a great concession from the authorities, for 
the use of lamps had heretofore been forbidden. But 
one lamp proved insufficient for the large number of 
prison students. I believe they were eighty in num- 
ber. Subsequently one more lamp was granted, then 


another, then another, till finally the room was fully 
lighted. He who taught his associates also began to 
preach to them every day. One day fire broke out in 
the prison, but there was no least confusion. He kept 
them in complete order. Under his direction each 
one worked nobly and soon the fire was extinguished 
Afterwards the prisoners were inspected, and none of 
them had escaped. It was a wonderful thing. The 
authorities of the city were informed of the behavior 
of the prisoners and the reason for it, and their leader 
was released on account of his good conduct, although 
he had one year yet to serve. After his release he 
called on us and told us his story. He had killed a 
man ten years ago in a quarrel. He has since started 
a private school in Otsu, and Mr. Davis, myself, and 
some of our students have preached there ever since. 
This will soon result in the formation of a church 

In March, 1878, while visiting Tokyo on business 
connected with the school, he made a journey to An- 
naka, where he had first preached Christ on his return 
from America. 

"Finding the Minister of the Interior so ill that 
there was no prospect of seeing him immediately, I 
made up my mind at once to go to Annaka in order 
to improve my time. After leaving that place some 
three years ago the people began to lose their interest 
in the truth, as there was no one to guide them. My 
letters written to them occasionally kept up the courage 
of a few. Last summer one of our brethren from Ky- 
oto went up there and stirred up their almost fainting 
faith, and as they have more leisure in the winter than 
in the summer time, it was their especial request he 
should come again in the winter. When I arrived 


there I found them well prepared to be baptized. I 
held a meeting on the evening of my arrival, preached 
to a large audience the next day, and held an inquiry 
meeting in the evening. This was repeated the fol- 
lowing day, and on the fourth day I baptized thirty 
persons and organized a church. It was the most 
solemn and yet most joyful event I ever witnessed;, 
The people thus far have paid all expenses and have 
never received any aid from without. They take 
pride in doing so, and have already raised a fund for 
the support of their church. There is a rich mer- 
chant among them, the most influential man in the 
place, although quite young. He keeps the pastor in 
his home and does everything for his comfort. He 
also supports a free reading-room, where daily, weekly, 
and monthly papers, secular and religious, are kept. 
When I left the place, numbers came with me as far 
as the outskirts of the town and expressed to me their 
gratitude for my coming." 

A school for girls had been opened two years be- 
fore in Kyoto at the house of one of the missionaries, 
and had recently been removed to a building erected 
for this especial object. A similar school had already 
been established in Kobe. The object of these schools 
was the fitting of young girls for the great work to be 
done among' the women of the land. Nowhere outside 
of these " Homes'' could the growing class of Chris- 
tian workers find Christian helpmeets. Certain mem- 
bers of the Mission deemed this movement premature, 
but events proved that those who were sanguine were 
not sanguine enough. Mr. Neesima's visit to Tokyo 
was for the purpose of securing permission for the res- 
idence of two American ladies as teachers in Kyoto. 
This permission had been refused by the governor of 


the city. "This," he writes, "is the gravest matter 
we have ever experienced. We will bear it with all 
the grace we have got, but if the despotic governor 
does not cease to ill-treat us we will burst out and ap- 
peal to the supreme power." On consultation with 
the American minister and the Japanese minister of 
foreign affairs he found the chief cause of complaint 
to be the fact that while the Doshisha was nominally 
a Japanese company, its funds were derived from for- 
eign sources, and that in the name of education its 
real object was the extension of Christianity. The 
growth and prosperity of the school and the establish- 
ment of the Kyoto Home for girls had aroused the 
enmity of the local governor ; the authorities at Tokyo 
declined to interfere ; Dr. Taylor had been forbidden 
to practice medicine even in his own house, and was 
finally ordered out of the city ; the outlook was dis- 
couraging, and Mr. Neesima wrote a strong appeal to 
America for a permanent fund. "If we have such a 
fund," he said, "although coming from a foreign 
source and managed by foreigners, yet we can say that 
we support our teachers with our own money." 

The refusal of the Kyoto governor to permit the 
entrance of the lady teachers was, after four months' 
delay, overruled by Count Inouye. "I conveyed to 
him," writes Mr. Neesima, "my idea, that it is impos- 
sible to check Christianity, because it is a living prin- 
ciple. If crushed in one city it will surely burst 
forth in another. The best way is to leave it alone, 
else Japan will lose her best patriots. The decision 
of the central government was in our favor and the 
plan of the local authorities was utterly defeated. 
Glory to our living God! " 

Mr. Neesima was exceedingly tried at this time. 


Mr. Yamamoto had lost his connection with the city 
government by reason of his active interest in the 
Doshisha. Every difficulty connected with the school, 
difficulties of internal management, as well as those 
arising from outside opposition, was brought to Mr. 
Neesima for settlement. He stood between the stu- 
dents and the foreign teachers, between his immediate 
associates and the general mission, between the school 
and the authorities. He was actively engaged in mis- 
sionary work, and in addition to the cares inseparable 
from his connection with the Doshisha and Kyoto 
Home, were those growing out of the organization of 
native churches throughout the empire, and the for- 
mation of the Japanese Home Missionary Society, in 
the superintendence of whose work he took an active 
part for many years. 

In the summer of 1878 he took a brief vacation in 
a suburb of Kyoto, from which he writes, August 

"My wife sent me off from home to this quiet vil- 
lage, which is only six miles away, and much cooler 
than Kyoto. Trees are plenty. It is shady every- 
where. I came here three days ago and am now stay- 
ing in a temple. I have hired two large, airy rooms, 
using one for reading and another for sleeping. The 
temple is surrounded by a very wide piazza, a part of 
which I use for my kitchen. You may ask whether I 
have brought a cook with me. I answer, no. I em- 
ploy girls at home, but it would not do for me to bring 
a servant girl to such a place when I am alone. I 
am a person of wonderful adaptability, and can be 
both cook and boy. Dried meats, eggs, sweet pota- 
toes, fruits, etc., are all provided. Now I have a 
chance to show forth my old skill which I practiced on 


the Wild River. Alas ! none to see but myself. The 
old priest and his family are living in the back part 
of the temple. They are very quiet people and do 
not distrust me at all. I retire and rise early, finish- 
ing my breakfast before seven. I read till ten, and 
take an artificial salt bath for my health. Then I 
prepare dinner, take a little nap and a long walk 
along the shady valley." 

In the spring of this year he received a letter from 
Viscount Okabe, then studying in Springfield, Mass., 
where he had united with the Congregational church. 
Mr. Okabe, formerly Daimio of Kishinowada, prov- 
ince of Idzumi, and now vice-minister of foreign 
affairs, requested Mr. Neesima to send some one to 
preach to his former retainers living at Kishinowada, 
and in answer to this request Mr. Neesima at once 
visited that place in person. An account of this visit 
is given in the following letter to Viscount Okabe, 
dated August 16, 1878 : - 


Allow me to write you a few lines to inform you of 
my experience in your old castle town. On receiving 
your letter I tried hard to send one of our best stu- 
dents to that place. Unfortunately they were all as- 
signed to other places before the receipt of your letter, 
and I was obliged to leave the matter untouched for 
some time. Although much occupied with many 
things, I started from here on the 19th ult. and 
reached Kishinowada on the 20th. On arrival I sent 
for Mr. J., who promptly called upon me with Mr. 
M. I told him your special request and translated to 
them your letter. They were much pleased to see me, 
and through their prompt action I had the pleasure of 


delivering my first discourse to your people at Show- 
shia on the 21st. There were twenty hearers. I 
preached on seven consecutive days, the audience in- 
creasing to one hundred, all men and mostly of the 
samurai class. There were many schoolmasters and 
advanced pupils, most of whom were young and quite 
sharp. They raised up all sorts of questions, for the 
new doctrine I preached seemed to them very strange 
and doubtful. They had never heard of the doctrine 
of the immortality of the soul. They kept me pretty 
busy while I was there. They were ready to hear 
and ready to discuss ; I was ready to tell. I forgot 
my strength as well as the time. Although I tried to 
get hold of these intelligent hearers, I did not neglect 
the uneducated. In my discourse I spent one hour 
for the former and another hour for the latter. Thus 
my discourse lasted two hours every day. To my great 
satisfaction the former began to read the gospel and 
"Evidences of Christianity," and found out their 
Creator and also immaterial soul existing in them- 
selves, and the latter listened very attentively and 
some of them already began to reform. You may anx- 
iously ask me whether one has begun to believe in the 
crucified Saviour. I cannot give you an affirmative 
reply yet, but I can simply tell you that through God's 
grace his humble servant has opened before them a 
new way to enter, and if I mistake not, some of them 
have already directed their faces towards it. 

On the 25th I explained to them my desire to 
preach to women as well as to men. I told them men 
are not the only creatures to learn the way of salva- 
tion, but women also. While women are kept down 
like slaves, as in our country, the state of society will 
never be improved. On the contrary, if women are 

TRIALS. 221 

Christianized, educated, and elevated, they will do 
more than men for the purification of society. Spe- 
cial meetings for women were therefore arranged for 
the evenings of the 26th and 27th. The audience was 
larger, over one hundred each time. 

When I returned I found one of our students had 
just got back from Fukichigama, where he had gone 
to preach; having been obliged to leave on account of 
the strictness of the local authorities. So I sent him 
to Kishinowada to take up the work I left unfinished. 
Besides him, about twenty-six of our school have gone 
there to take sea-baths. They are mostly young fel- 
lows, and yet believers. I wish I could inform you 
more about our work, but I find my work almost be- 
yond my strength, and am therefore obliged to write 
you hastily and briefly. 

Mr. Neesima was often, and at this time especially, 
embarrassed by differences of opinion prevailing in 
the Mission. Obstacles of every kind were constantly 
arising, obstacles which threatened the very exist- 
ence of the school and all that had been previously 
accomplished. Every opportunity was taken by the 
anti-foreign and anti-Christian party to defeat his 
plans and arrest the growth of the Doshisha. The 
fact that, while nominally a Japanese company, the 
Doshisha was in reality supported by annual grants 
derived from foreign sources, was made the basis of an 
attack which very nearly resulted in closing its doors. 
The renewal of the passports of resident teachers was 
obtained only after long and persistent efforts, and 
the course of study was continually subject to the hos- 
tile interference of the local authorities. The condi- 
tion of affairs was frequently so serious that the Mis- 


sion lost heart entirely and was ready to abandon the 
contest as hopeless. Internal difficulties aggravated 
the situation. Some of Mr. Neesima's associates felt 
that too much prominence was given to the strictly 
educational work of the station. The entire separa- 
tion of the native churches from the Board was openly 
advocated, a course which Mr. Neesima believed to 
be impracticable in the early stages of their existence. 
The settlement of all conflicts between the students 
and the faculty, between the native pastors and their 
foreign associates, between the Mission and the au- 
thorities, devolved upon Mr. Neesima, and he was 
often misunderstood and misrepresented by those 
whom he respected and loved. Many of his best Jap- 
anese friends criticised him severely for receiving 
money from Mr. Hardy for his support, money 
which, in view of the slender salary paid by the Board, 
was indispensable, and this criticism assumed at 
times the form of bitter personal attack. In addition 
to the cares inseparable from his position as head of 
the school, his activity in organizing the native mis- 
sionary work involved so large a correspondence and 
such frequent journeys that for many years he was 
practically without rest or vacation. "O," he ex- 
claimed at one time to Dr. Davis, "that I could be 
crucified once for Christ, and be done with it." And 
yet Mr. Neesima was exactly the man for the place. 
Anglo-Saxon straightforward methods of procedure, 
so foreign to the semi -indifferent, indirect Japanese 
mind, made a middle -man an absolute necessity, and 
both by nature and education Mr. Neesima was admi- 
rably fitted for this position. He knew enough of both 
parties to sympathize with each, and his great heart 
of love was ever between them to prevent violent con- 


flict and unhappy misunderstanding. Many young 
Japanese educated abroad have returned so convinced 
of their superiority that all cooperation with them has 
been impossible. Mr. Neesima occupied a position of 
peculiar difficulty and temptation, and was subject to 
a cross-fire which tried his tact and patience to the 
utmost; yet he retained throughout the confidence of 
all in the singleness and sincerity of his purpose, and 
the simplicity of his Christian character. 

In February, 1879, he was again in Tokyo inter- 
ceding with Mr. Mori, then vice-minister of foreign 
affairs, for the renewal of Dr. Learned' s passport. 
His success in this instance is but an example of his 
general success in accomplishing what was regarded as 
hopeless by his associates. Although in this case the 
special object of his mission was secured, his interview 
with Mr. Mori convinced him that the safety of the 
school depended upon the creation of a permanent en- 
dowment, and he therefore wrote at once the following 
strong appeal to the Prudential Committee of the 
Board : 

"When I returned from my missionary tour to 
Kyushu I was mostly used up by exposure to intense 
heat there. When I fairly commenced my labor 
there numbers of telegrams came informing me that 
I must return home as soon as possible to attend to 
grave matters. To my great regret I was obliged to 
give up my work and return homeward. Now I must 
inform you of the difficulty just hanging upon my 
shoulders, but I trust you will never be discouraged. 
I am fully convinced the Lord has designed me to 
bear all sorts of trials for extending his kingdom in 
my beloved country. No matter how heavy the cross 
may be, I am ready to bear, but what I fear is that I 


cannot picture out to you our present critical condi- 
tion so that you could fully understand the impending 
difficulty and our pressing want. 

"When I undertook to start our school in the city 
of Kyoto, I was rather compelled by law to ask per- 
mission from the central government both for estab- 
lishing it and for employing foreign teachers. For 
foreigners are not allowed to remain in an interior 
city like Kyoto unless they are employed by natives. 
As my friends gave me funds to start a 
school and the American Board agreed to furnish me 
teachers, I was naturally obliged to assume a position 
of proprietorship. My written application for a 
school was first presented to the educational depart- 
ment, with the approval of the Ky5to governor. But 
it was contrary to the regulation of said department 
to employ regular missionaries as teachers either in 
the public or private schools. It was my first obsta- 
cle. But through Mr. Tanaka's special favor I se- 
cured permission for Dr. Davis to enter the sacred 
and ancient capital of Japan. When it was done I 
rejoicingly said, 'Miraculous!' When we had fairly 
started our school we began to preach the gospel in a 
most quiet possible way. But the truth spoken in a 
private room became known throughout the city, and 
caused a great alarm among the priests in the region. 
They got up a great meeting and presented their united 
application to the governor to stop our preaching alto- 
gether. Then the governor summoned me to his of- 
fice and requested me not to preach any more in my 
house. But I asked him, if a friend of mine comes 
to my house and inquires after a truth, would his Ex- 
cellency intend to compel me not to give any reply ? 
He answered in the negative. Then I asked him if 


two, three, or even one hundred friends come and ask 
me something of the Christian truth, has his Excellency 
any power to stop me telling them of it? He said no. 
Then, said I, if he has no such power I can keep on 
preaching in my house. Finding I was such a stiff- 
necked fellow he simply charged me not to teach the 
Bible in our school. It has been taught ever since 
without ceasing, even through many darkest periods. 
When one battle was over another battle followed. 
Then another, still another. It was rumored that 
our governor reported to the central government that 
I have started my school with the pretense of educa- 
tion, but my real design was to promote Christianity 
throughout the empire. Just about that time I pre- 
sented applications for the entrance of Miss W. and 
Miss P. into Kyoto. It was refused without any 
reason being given. The next complaint of our gov- 
ernor was that although I am a nominal employer of 
foreign teachers, the school is really not a native in- 
stitution but a foreign one, since it is sustained by the 
annual grant of the American Board. Our situation 
became much endangered. The minister at Tokyo 
was ever trying to stop the entry of missionaries into 
Kyoto. When Mr. Learned 's first passport was 
nearly out I applied for a second. Everything 
seemed dark and hopeless. I knew surely that a per- 
mission could not be had if I took an ordinary course. 
To make a bold strike was my inspiration. I called 
on our governor at his office and requested him to ap- 
prove my application and to speak favorably of us to 
the Foreign Department. He promised to do what 
he could, but said everything depended on the Foreign 
Office. By this way I prevented his doing any mis- 
chief, and then started for Tokyo to see Mr. Mori, 


and explained to him all about our school, how it 
started and how it is sustained. His reply was, 'You 
have a right to exist and also to employ foreign teach- 
ers if you use your own fund instead of that of the 
Board. The Foreign Office objects to your depend- 
ing upon the American Board altogether.' I told 
him this annual aid was a free gift, and that we made 
a good use of it. Is it forbidden us to receive any aid 
from a foreign nation? If so, the law ought also to 
prohibit us from aiding other nations. Did not our 
people send an immense quantity of rice last year to a 
famishing district in China, and can we not also re- 
ceive some aid for our moral and intellectual famine? 
This argument was just enough to bring him around 
to our side, and through his kindness I obtained the 
extension of Mr. Learned's passport for five years. 

"When I applied this summer for Dr. Gordon's 
passport there was a sharp discussion between Mr. 
Mori and the minister. I must inform you why the 
latter is so bitter against us. He is a hater of Chris- 
tianity. He does not clearly discriminate between us 
and some native merchants who keep shops open for 
foreigners outside the concessions in Tokyo, by using 
their own names although they are hired and paid by 
the foreigners. Such is strictly forbidden by the law 
of the empire, yet is done by shrewd natives. The 
minister ranks us with these merchants, and is ready at 
any time to drive us out from Kyoto. But Mr. Mori 
stood up for us nobly, and persuaded him to grant our 
application. At the same time he sent me word by a 
friend to be cautious, and advised me to raise a perma- 
nent fund at once. For if it be proved that our school 
is sustained by the Board, I shall be heavily punished, 
our work will be suspended, we shall be driven out of 


the city, yea, all our effort thus far put forth will 
disappear like morning dew before the sun. Seeing 
such a dark prospect before me shall I lament like the 
old prophet Jeremiah? No, I am determined not to 
lament, but to fight through till we conquer. May 
God help us, untiring soldiers. Since I heard from 
Mr. Mori I have been seriously thinking how to es= 
cape the governor's iron hand. We are badly spoken 
of throughout the country and ridiculed as the cradle 
of Christian priests. If we lose our hold here how can 
we start in the interior again? Our missionaries do 
not fully apprehend our critical condition. Doubtless 
some of them have written to the Board about it. 
Will the gentlemen of the Board stand and see us per- 
ish without any fellow-sympathy ? Is the policy of the 
Board so conservative that it cannot give us a perma- 
nent fund from the large legacy they have recently re- 
ceived? In time of need it is often desirable to create 
a new policy in order to boldly carry out God's work. 
It is time for them to consider whether they will at- 
tack or retreat. If they do not understand my aim, 
if they be still incredulous, I will come to Boston to 
explain. If they do not grant me the fund I will pre- 
sent my cause to wealthy individuals in the States. 
I will become a public beggar from city to city. In 
my situation I would not cease begging as long as 
I can use my tongue or my pen. For Christ's sake 
and my country's sake I will become a loudly crying 

" In this connection I must mention the standard of 
our school. Our people are making a bold strike in 
educational affairs. The government institution of 
learning as well as some private schools are advancing 
above us. If we do not strive to improve we shall be 


left in lower strata of educational system, and fail to 
lay hold of the best class of students. Our good mis- 
sionary friends have thus far tried to teach the Bible 
too much and neglected scientific teaching. Numbers 
of promising boys were much disappointed and have 
left us to go to the schools in Tokyo, where they will 
have no Christian influence. We can't afford to lose 
these promising ones. We must tie them to our 
school by giving them a thorough, higher, and profes- 
sional as well as Christian education. This, if I mis- 
take not, is the keynote of success for Christian effort 
in Japan. Unless the missionaries find this keynote 
their work will be largely wasted and fruitless. To 
my great disappointment some missionaries do not 
take pains enough to adapt themselves to our way in 
this important respect. Hence they are getting quite 
unpopular and cannot get along with the natives quite 
smoothly. A chief reason is that they are still Amer- 
icans. Their habits, ideas, and imagination are all 
American. What Americans regard as good the na- 
tives may despise. Something honorable in America 
is regarded dishonorable here. Petty troubles arise 
now and then between them and our Christians. 
They want to get too many foreign reinforcements 
instead of raising up native workers by their own 
hand. They cannot talk as the natives can. They 
cannot go about from home to home as well as the 
natives can. They cannot bear heat of the day as 
well as the natives can. They cannot live in a cheap 
rented house so patiently as the natives can. Their 
work should be a high spiritual brain-work. They 
should raise up the spokesmen instead of speaking 
themselves. If I were in the place of Dr. Clark I 
should put all my effort in founding a strong Christian 


university in Japan, in order to raise up Christian 
ministers, Christian physicians, Christian statesmen, 
and even Christian merchants. Christians must not 
be charged with being ignoramuses, or we shall not 
get the respect of the people. We shall be ridiculed 
for our ignorance as well as for our faith. It is well 
for us to remember and practice our Saviour's words, 
'be wise as serpents.' Try to send out choice men, 
men of the New Testament spirit, of broad education 
and strong character, possessing the power of adapta- 
bility. And I earnestly beg of you to give us a fund 
to save the life of the Kyoto Mission and to raise our 
educational standard so as to make our school the cen- 
tre of Christian power and influence. I have freely 
expressed my humble opinion. May God give you 
and the gentlemen of the Board help to see our pres- 
ent critical position, is the prayer of your unworthy 

Throughout this whole period Mr. Neesima wrote 
fully and freely to Mr. Hardy of all his trials and per- 
plexities, but his letters are absolutely free from per- 
sonalities and contain explanations where one might 
look for reproaches. The spirit of hope and faith al- 
ways dominated that of discouragement, and there is 
no trace of fault-finding. Stronger even than the tes- 
timony of his colleagues in the various missions as to 
his bearing under these trials is that of these letters 
written in confidence, wherein he poured out his whole 
heart as a son to his father. From these letters a few 
extracts are taken. 

"I am staying in an old Buddhist temple in a sub- 
urb of the city. While I am at home I receive con- 
stantly visitors who take up my time. As a large 
portion of them come on business, I cannot avoid them 


conveniently. There Is no vacation in this hottest 
part of the summer. My correspondence and these 
callers still keep me busy. I will try to get off from 
home as soon as possible, else it will kill me. With 
regard to my opinion on mission work, I think the 

plan of Mr. will cut it short. The native 

churches ought to be independent. Most of them are 
striving to be so quite hard. Here is no lack of in- 
dependent spirit. But some churches are like babes. 

Mr. 's plan is to make men out of babes at once. 

He says the native churches ought not to receive any 
foreign money; that the native missionary society 
ought not to receive any aid from the Mission; that 
the Doshisha ought to be supported by the native 
churches; that the girls' school should be in their 
hands; that the theological school and newspapers 
ought to be sustained by them. It is hard work for 
jiost of these churches to support their pastors and 
defray all other necessary expenses, and too much for 
sixteen or seventeen poor churches to take so much 
into their hands independently of the Mission. None 
of us have any beggarly spirit, yet there are some 
things which we cannot efficiently do. If this plan 
be carried out our school will be weakened and the 
number of theological students diminished. I would 
call this a poor and short-sighted policy. To save 
money is to lose our be$t workers. We are hoping 
to start a vernacular theological course to educate 
some in Chinese and Japanese without English. 
Those who have a thorough English education ought 
to occupy central places, and those who are taught 
in Chinese and Japanese can be assistant workers. 
Since last May our Buddhist priests are wide awake. 
They have plenty of money to hire scholars to attack 


Christianity. We must have men well furnished with 
scientific and Biblical knowledgeHor advancing Japan. 
We are now on a battlefield. Soldiers ought to be 
strong. Hereafter uneducated pastors will be thrown 
out of the market. Such will everywhere be disliked. 
The better preachers we send, the more money will 
the people raise. 

"This is only leisure hour I have found since last 
April. I can only say to you that my life is like a 
race runner's. I find leisure hours only in summer. 
I devote these chiefly to my own study. I must keep 
pace with the advancing world. On the 17th and 
18th I made a short visit to Kishinowada. My time 
was so fully occupied there that I could scarcely eat. 
While I was eating people were waiting in the room. 

"I must be thankful for the wise management of 
the American Board in sustaining our Kyoto institu- 
tions. Let the present arrangement continue as long 
as it may be needful. According to your kind fa- 
therly advice I will be careful and try to do all things 
in a perfect harmony with our missionaries. I shall 
be careful not to find fault in others. We were ter- 
ribly attacked by some brethren in other stations. I 
attempted to defend our position. It is all over now. 
I shall say nothing about them*, of them, or against 
them. There is now perfect harmony between the 
different stations of our Mission. The last two 
months were the hardest ones I have ever experienced 
since my return to Japan. I found myself in the 
lowest stratum, and received the whole pressure upon 
myself. A heavy trial with respect to the govern- 
ment, and grave troubles among our native brethren 
and also in our school. O, heavy burdens ! I bore 
them chiefly on myself by His help, but I think I 
came pretty near to burst up my brains." 


Mr. Neesima had been for some years looking for- 
ward with "a great delight" to a visit from Mr. 
Hardy. "It would seem to me a dream," he says, 
"to be permitted to shake your hand on this side of 
the water." He was also anxious that Mr. Hardy, 
then chairman of the Prudential Committee of the 
Board, should see for himself the exact need of the 
country. When he learned that his visit, so long an- 
ticipated, was deferred, he says: "I cannot speak to 
you of this disappointment; it is too great." He was 
then in the province of Hyuga, in Kyushu, the most 
southerly of the four large islands of Japan, where he 
had gone at the request of a native physician to en- 
gage in missionary work. In the fall of this year his 
sister died of hemorrhage of the lungs, and on October 
27th he writes : 

"Five weeks ago I went to Imabari, Shikoku, to 
organize a church and install a pastor. I was preach- 
ing to a large audience in the evening when I received 
a telegram from home. I hurried back to find my 
sister dying. We tried our best to save her. She 
gathered all her relatives about her and told them she 
might doubtless depart very soon from this world, and 
her best wish to them all was that they should walk 
with God and live on Christ daily as we live on food. 
When I was obliged to attend _the annual meeting of 
our Home Mission Board at Osaka she knew I was 
hesitating to go there, and told me not to stay away 
from that important meeting on account of her illness, 
but to do the Lord's business first. By these brave 
words I felt much encouraged to go. During the 
past two weeks she talked and dreamed much of 
heaven. Her mind was full of it. One day she said 
to me: 'What free grace it is that I, a poor sinner, 


could find a hope in the eternal heaven. I am desir- 
ous to go there even now.' She dreamed much of 
persons in white singing beautifully, and since then 
has become very fond of singing, asking every Chris- 
tian visitor to sing for her. Then she shook their 
hands and bade them farewell till they meet her in 
heaven. Two minutes before her death she asked my 
wife to sing one or two hymns, then passed away as if 
she were going to sleep. It happened I was away 
that morning. When I came home I found her 
countenance already changed, but she replied to me 
once when I called her name. I was unwilling to go 
to our school that morning, because there was such 
change in her face, but she said 'No, go, do your 
duty. ' We miss her very much, but the very thought 
of her makes us feel that heaven is very near." 

In November, on returning from Annaka, he re- 
ceived from Dr. Clark the glad tidings that the year's 
appropriation of $8,000 had been placed in the hands 
of the native society which he represented, to be used 
under his direction for the educational work in Ky5to. 
The relief from all embarrassments with the govern- 
ment afforded by this action was very great. To Mr. 
Hardy he writes December 27, 1879 : 

"I found your last letter on my arrival home. 
When I read it I exclaimed, 'The good Lord has 
done it ! ' My rejoicing was mingled with running 
tears. I knelt down before the Lord with my wife 
and gave Him our heartfelt thanks. Next to the 
Lord, I must express my gratitude to you for your 
deep interest in us. I must also thank the gentlemen 
of the Board. Through this action I shall be relieved 
from grave difficulty. Step by step the plots of our 
enemies are defeated. 'Delight thyself in the Lord 


and He shall give thee the desire of thine heart.' 
'Commit thy ways unto the Lord; trust also in Him 
and He shall bring it to pass.' O, what precious 
promises they are unto us. I am wondering why God 
has chosen a weak instrumentality such as I am, weak 
both in body and mind, for promoting his kingdom 
in this empire. I could simply say to Him: 'Here 
I am ; employ me in thy vineyard if thou findest a 
pleasure in thy humble servant. ' In my later expe- 
rience I find more than ever nothingness in me." 

It was very characteristic of Mr. Neesima, and 
thoroughly in line with his efforts to spread the gos- 
pel through an educated ministry, that in his mission- 
ary tours he always sought to interest the leading men 
of the town or district, as well as to reach the poor. 
In February, 1880, he writes, in this connection, from 
Okayama : 

" I find it very hard to reach prominent men in our 
society, because many of them are too proud to be 
taught. They are self -conceited and seek for no fur- 
ther improvement in their moral condition. They 
have also a strong anti-religious spirit. I find in 
them the strange notion that any religion, even Chris- 
tianity, hinders the progress of nations and has no- 
thing to do with modern civilization. On the other 
hand, I always find some brilliant man who comes 
forth boldly and manfully. There are doubtless some 
thoughtless boys with us, but none who speak against 
Christianity. I have to be pretty careful. They do 
not like oldest kind of theology. They cannot bear 
any stiffness. In the Government University of 
Tokyo, where are about seven hundred students, is 
an infidel atmosphere. Some native and some foreign 
teachers exert bad influence. There are also anti- 


Christian schools in Tokyo. We shall get learned 
persons enough within a few years, but mere worldly 
wisdom will not help our perishing people. We 
need the broadest culture and strongest Christian 
faith to counteract the downward tendency of our 
educated youth. The works of Spencer, Mill, and 
Draper are their favorites. They look down upon 
us as bigots. We must raise our standard of educa- 
tion until they can no longer assail us. If we limit 
it simply to theology, the best self-sustaining students 
will not come to us. Only by making our school at- 
tractive by giving a good and broad education can we 
widen our Christian influence. Some of our dear 
brethren have got very strange notions, and think 
altogether too little of education." 

The personal friendship between Mr. Neesima and 
his colleagues of the Kyoto station was very strong. 
For Dr. Davis especially, who had shared his burdens 
from the outset, he felt the warmest affection, and re- 
peatedly ascribes success to his tact, courage, and 
counsel. He writes to Dr. Davis August 12, 1880 : 

"I must assure you we cannot get along without 
you. Doubtless the many troubles you have encoun- 
tered these past years broke you down completely. 
I hope you will take the matter slightly easier and try 
to rest as much as you can. The mission work in 
Japan is not like child's play. You have many trou- 
blesome boys under your care. I fear I am one of 
them. What I feel keenly in myself is my impru- 
dence in many things. Certainly it must have been a 
great trial to you. But I trust an imprudent child 
such as I am may grow wiser as he grows older. At 
any rate it is well for us to remember that the world 
cannot be converted in a day." 


The year 1881 opened more brightly. The gov- 
ernor of Kyoto had resigned, and his successor proved 
to be a man of liberal ideas. "I am informed," writes 
Mr. Neesima, "that he intends to call upon me soon. 
He will then be quite different from the former one. 
When I see him I shall try to present to him a plan 
to revolutionize the system of education in this city. 
My aim is to start a Sunday-school for the teachers 
of the primary schools." One of the immediate re- 
sults of this change in the local government was the 
permission granted to hold religious meetings in the 
large theatres of the city. The first of these was at- 
tended by four thousand persons, and was addressed 
by twenty different speakers. These meetings pro- 
duced a profound impression. In an editorial, of 
which the following is a translation, the " Osaka 
Nippo," one of the most influential daily papers of 
Japan, asked: 

"Is it the hand of man or of Heaven, or is it the 
inevitable tendency of the age, or is it the freedom of 
the human mind that has advanced to such an extent, 
that, in the very heart of Ky5to, the original Head 
and Holy Seat of Shintoism and Buddhism, a great 
meeting for the preaching of the Jesus Way has been 
held without any opposition? We need not go back 
to the utter destruction of the Christians in the war 
of Shimabara, but confining ourselves to what we 
have observed, it seems like the things of yesterday, 
that law rigidly prohibiting Christianity, written in 
eleven characters, and posted high in air before all 
the people; and that other law of religious examina- 
tion that required every one to be enrolled once a 
year as either a Buddhist or Shintoist. Now such 
laws have become the dreams of fourteen years ago, 


and have passed away forever from our loved Ja- 
pan. . . . 

" Six years after the Restoration (eight years ago) 
the government took the first step of silent toleration 
of Christianity by removing from the high places the 
laws against heresy. Since then this new religion, 
hand in hand with western learning and civilization, 
has been gradually spreading not only in the open 
ports, but even in the interior. Churches are being 
built with the cross of Christ erected over them, and 
our people are everywhere being publicly taught the 
Bible. Already among the believers there are count- 
less numbers who, having learned the outlines of this 
religion, go everywhere preaching and admonishing, 
converting the people, and daily spreading wider and 
wider the truth. 

"We remember that some six or seven years ago, 
when Mr. Nakamura of Tokyo published a translation 
of Dr. Martin's "Evidences of Christianity, " there 
was an anxious discussion in one department of our 
government as to whether such an act could be passed 
over in silence. But now everywhere there are stores 
where Christian books are on sale. We are apt 
merely to notice that Christianity spreads only an inch 
to-day, and an inch to-morrow; and so accommodat- 
ing ourselves to its gradual advance, we do not won- 
der at its rapid march. But when we sketch on paper 
the steps of progress, we cannot shut our eyes to the 
marvelous manner in which it is taking root. And 
among all these progressive steps, that which seems 
to us the most astonishing is what is written in the 
opening sentence of this article: The preaching of 
the Jesus Way in every centre of Kyoto, the Holy 
seat of Buddhism and Shintoism, the place where the 


people are the most given to superstitious ideas about 
gods, where they hold in deepest reverence the de- 
parted spirits, and where but ten years ago the arrival 
of a foreign ambassador gave rise to the thought that 
the soil of the Capital of the gods was polluted, and 
that the wrath of the gods and of Buddha would surely 
fall upon the people ! " 

In his early school days at Andover, amid the in- 
fluences of a Christian home and training, Mr. Nee- 
sima had first conceived the plan of a Christian uni- 
versity for Japan. When we remember the condition 
of Japan at that period, before the restoration, and 
his own position, an exile struggling with poverty 
and ill-health, we are not surprised to find him refer- 
ring to this project as a day-dream. Yet it was even 
then more than a dream, it was an ambition and a 
purpose. "I kept it," he says, "within myself, and 
prayed over it." From time to time he confided his 
thought to his friends, but met with no encourage- 
ment. On the eve of his return, in the presence of 
an audience whose sympathy and interest were indis- 
pensable to success, the desire of his heart burst from 
his lips, and in the appeal then made he laid the cor- 
ner-stone of the Meiji University. Beginning, with 
seven pupils, in two dingy rooms, a school which for 
years was the object of contempt and ridicule, op- 
posed at every step by the hatred of the authorities 
and the prejudices of the people, his purpose never 
faltered. The time had now come when he could ap- 
peal to a sentiment to wn*ose development he himself 
had largely contributed. Residents of Kyoto who 
had formerly antagonized all his efforts, but who were 
deeply interested as patriots in the general question 
of education, had become convinced that the sound- 


est learning rested upon the Christianity which they 
had despised. Dissatisfied with the results of the 
government university at Tokyo, plans for an insti- 
tution independent of the state began to be discussed, 
promises of money for departments of law and medi- 
cine were made, and Mr. Neesima was consulted with 
reference to the incorporation of these departments 
and the broadening of the curriculum of the Doshisha. 
With these brighter prospects opening before him he 
began the realization of his long-cherished plans and 
publicly announced his purpose. In the spring of 
1884, the first of several meetings designed to call 
public attention to this movement was held in Kyoto. 
It was attended by the leading officials and business 
men of the city and was addressed by Dr. Davis, Mr. 
Neesima and others. In May the following appeal, 
prepared by Mr. Yamamoto and Mr. Neesima, was 
issued : 

"The recent political changes in Japan have swept 
away feudalism, for many hundred years the basis of 
society. Under the steadily increasing influence of 
these changes the transformation of society has been so 
great that we seem to live in a new Japan. On every 
side are those who insist upon the improvement of our 
political institutions, our educational methods, our 
commerce, and our industries. We heartily agree 
with them in the importance of these things, but when 
we examine the present condition of affairs we find 
one cause for sorrow. Do you ask what that cause 
is? It is that there does riot e$ist in Japan a univer- 
sity which, teaching the new science, is also founded 
upon Christian morality. This is the foundation 
which our civilization needs. In natural advantages 
Japan is not inferior to Europe or America. Why 


then is our civilization so different? It is certain 
also that we have few men of earnest purpose. Hence 
the necessity for universities. We can learn from 
the example of Europe. In the sixteenth century, 
Luther, the great reformer, said: 'Parents who re- 
fuse to send their children to school are enemies of the 
state and should be punished.' Fichte, the German 
philosopher, said : ' The reason why Germany stands 
in the front of European civilization is found in the 
power emanating from her universities.' The twelfth 
century was the dawn of civilization in Europe. 
Greek philosophy was then studied in the University 
of Paris and Roman law in the University of Bologna. 
Before the year 1600 the universities of Oxford and 
Cambridge had been founded in England, those of 
Edinburgh and Glasgow in Scotland, of Prague, 
Heidelberg, Leipzic, Tubingen, and Jena, in Ger- 
many. Universities have also been established in 
Holland, Spain, Portugal, and Austria. Abelard, 
Roger Bacon, Kepler, Galileo, Lord Bacon, Locke, 
Newton, Milton, Leibnitz, Kant, Reid, and Hamil- 
ton, were famous as great scholars in those countries. 
Pym, Hampden, Pitt, Fox, Burke, Johnson, Wycliffe, 
Luther, Calvin, and Knox, were reformers in politics 
and religion. Through the influence of these univer- 
sities philosophy and science advanced, despotism and 
feudalism were checked and destroyed, the power of 
priest and noble resisted, the desire for liberty and 
self-government kindled. The Reformation and the 
English Revolution changed the condition of Europe, 
In 1800 there were over one hundred universities in 
Europe, and that the march of civilization has been 
hastened by their influence is an indisputable fact. 
Look also at the colleges and universities of America, 


numbering over three hundred, yet only eight of 
which have been founded by the government. Har- 
vard, Yale, Princeton, Amherst, Williams, Dart- 
mouth, and Oberlin, of which the first is the most 
famous, may be noted. Harvard has now 110 profes- 
sors, a library of 134,000 volumes, and an endowment 
of $14,854,372. In 1872 there were in the United 
States 298 colleges and universities, and 66 were 
founded in the following seven years. This growth 
of the higher education in the United States is one 
of the wonders of the world. In the year 1620 the 
Pilgrim Fathers, seeking freedom to worship God, 
landed at Plymouth. They established a school 
founded upon Christian morality. For 260 years 
their descendants, inheriting the spirit of their fa- 
thers, have carried out their purpose. They have be- 
lieved that such schools would diminish the number 
of evil-doers, and increase the number of those who 
do good; that they would foster the spirit of liberty 
and become the foundation of the state; that the 
Christian university was the safeguard of freedom; 
and we do not doubt that their free institutions are 
the outcome of this spirit. 

"As soon as it saw the importance of the univer- 
sity our government established one at Tokyo, and 
has also founded several academies. These will give 
us intellectual and material, but not moral growth. 
There are many who are seeking to improve the pub- 
lic morality on the basis of Chinese philosophy. But 
we cannot rejoice in their efforts, for the moral code 
of China has no profound hold upon the minds of 
men. All Oriental states are almost wholly destitute 
of liberty and Christian morality, and cannot there- 
fore advance rapidly in civilization. It is the spirit 


of liberty, the development of science, the Christian 
morality, which has given birth to European civiliza- 
tions. Trace the effect to the cause and you will 
find science resting upon the foundation of Chris- 
tianity. We cannot therefore believe that Japan 
can secure this civilization until education rests upon 
the same basis. With this foundation the state is 
builded upon a rock. No sword can conquer it, no 
tempest destroy it, no sea overcome it. Resting on 
the old moral code of China, it stands upon the sea- 
sands, and, when the rough waves beat upon it, falls 
to ruin. 

" We are, therefore, hoping for a university which 
teaches advanced modern science and which is founded 
upon a pure morality. We have been very earnest in 
this matter. In this spirit we established the Do- 
shisha school in Kyoto in the eighth year of Meiji. 
Its students have increased year by year and our 
aim has ever been the university. We made known 
our purpose publicly in April of the sixteenth year of 
Meiji, and received much encouragement. At this 
time we met our friends in Kyoto and named it the 
Meiji University. We have determined first to raise 
an endowment for the departments of History, Phi- 
losophy, and Political Economy, and subsequently 
also for those of Law and Medicine. This is not 
easy of accomplishment, for a large sum is needed for 
buildings and professorships. Being so few we cannot 
of ourselves furnish the needed money, but we will 
not abandon our purpose to found this university now. 
We must work for new Japan. All true patriots 
should do so. Help us, as far as you are able, to ac- 
complish our purpose and do this great work. With- 
out your help our purpose cannot be realized." 


Mr. Neesima's personal activity in this matter was 
incessant, but the strain to which he had been sub- 
jected for nearly ten years had seriously impaired his 
health, which was now the cause of grave concern 
to his friends. Already in 1882 he had been urged 
to go to China for rest. This, however, he refused to 
do, writing to Mr. Hardy that "To go to China 
might possibly excite some jealous feeling among my 
home brethren, who have given up every earthly com- 
fort for the Lord, and are suffering much pecuniarily. 
I must never be a stumbling-stone to my dear breth- 
ren in Christ. But I begin to feel that I cannot go 
on much longer, and must stop work. My head does 
not allow me to read or write, yet something is always 
at hand. So I have made up my mind to take a trip 
to the north where I can see no Christian friends." 

This plan was carried out, and he spent part of *fche 
summer of 1882 in Wakamatsu, his wife's early 
home, following, mostly on foot, the great interior 
road known as the Nakasendo, and visiting Annaka 
and Nikko. At Wakamatsu he wrote by request the 
account of his early life quoted in the beginning of 
this volume, and, in forwarding it to America, said : 

"I hope Mr. Hardy will pardon me for not doing 
it sooner. I am afraid he will call me a disobedient 
boy. Since I began my work here I found out more 
and more my unworthiness, and have trembled to 
write this sketch. I wish I could break down my too 
great sensitiveness on this point. Some time ago I 
thought I was something, but now I feel I am no= 



ALTHOUGH relieved at this time from teaching and 
freed by his associates as far as practicable from rou- 
tine duties, the general care of the school and his 
intimate connection with the work of the Mission ren- 
dered it impossible for him to secure the needed rest. 
To his own health, however, he referred but rarely. 
In a letter of January 14, 1884, Mr. Hardy proposed 
his return to America via Suez, saying: "You allude 
merely to your health, but the Mission writes seriously 
of it;" and in the spring he was formally requested 
by a vote of the Prudential Committee of the Board 
"to take a furlough for such period as may be need- 
ful." This proposition he finally accepted. "It has 
been very hard to get him started," writes Dr. Davis, 
" and we have been afraid that he would break down 
entirely before he got under way. The number of 
irons he has in the fire is amazing, and it has been 
almost Impossible for him to find time to arrange for 
his leaving. As you value his life and work give him 
as long a rest as you can in Europe, before he crosses 
the Atlantic." In yielding to the solicitations of his 
friends Mr. Neesima wrote to Mr. Hardy from Kobe 
March 9, 1884: 

KOBE, March 9, 1884. 

I am very much indebted to you for your kind in- 
vitation as to my return to my dearest America. It 


was a serious matter for me to decide. In the first 
place I feel it too great an offering. It has been my 
attempt thus far not to place myself on a footing with 
the missionaries lest I should prove a stumbling-block 
to my native brethren. In the second place the anti- 
foreign party might sharply criticise my going to 
America. But after serious consideration I have con- 
cluded to accept your great favor and visit you once 
more. I feel there will be no least objection on the 
part of my native brethren. Some eminent men in 
the empire outside the churches heartily sanction my 
going. My friends at Osaka urge me strongly to go. 
I came here yesterday and my friends are all glad of 
this great opportunity for my sake. It is not my 
usual custom to write on the Sabbath, but yesterday 
I found occasion to speak to two eminent men on re- 
ligious matters, and I feel I ought to write you at 
least a line to thank you. Dr. Berry urges me 
strongly to start from here at once, but I have some- 
thing on my hands to be attended to first. 


To my two revered personages I desire to present 
this letter. While I was much perplexed on account 
of the serious brain trouble of my husband, you kindly 
invited him to come home to America. Though I 
think of the depth of your kindness like multitudes of 
mountains, I utterly fail to express it by my writing- 
brush. So I simply resort to God with my thanks- 
givings. I request you still farther to look after him. 
Please give him an opportunity to take a complete 
rest this summer, for he will be very busy when he 
comes home, and here is no possible chance for rest. 
As he is planning to enlarge the school, his care and 


labor will ever increase in the future. When I an- 
ticipate this matter I am greatly troubled thereby. 
Though I wished very much to accompany him and 
render him my service, I feared my going with him 
might possibly be more a burden than a help. Besides 
that, we have Joseph's aged parents still living with 
us and I must remain to serve and comfort them. 
Although it is very hard for me to be so long sepa- 
rated from him, yet I bear it rejoicingly. 

O, what happy creatures we are ! While God was 
utterly unknown to us, we are known to Hun. He 
called Joseph out to your country and provided you 
to receive him, and through the help of many our 
Doshisha was founded. As for me I am born in 
Japan and am grown in ignorance. Hence it is. im- 
possible for me to help my husband. However, I am 
endeavoring to be his helpmate in my service to God 
with a sincere heart. Lately I started a woman's 
meeting in a suburb of Kyoto. It has been attended 
by six, ten, and by thirteen. I feel I have no ability 
to lead these beloved sisters. I am but a child in 
faith. I wish to win one person to start with, and by 
and by another may be added unto. I wish I could 
meet your two personages at least once in this world 
to express my grateful feeling. And while I am un- 
able to express it either by my tongue or my pen, I 
hope that I could have an abundant opportunity to 
meet with you and talk with you in the same language 
in heaven when we are called up there by His mercy. 
But on acount of the shortcoming of my faith I have 
some fear that I may not be permitted to appear 
there. I hope you will pray for me on this account. 
Hereby I send you these my requests with my query 
for your health. 



The notebooks kept by Mr. Neesima during his 
journey reveal the variety of his interests. They are 
filled with historical notes, statistics, and memoranda 
of conversations with those to whom he had letters of 
introduction. He everywhere inspected the schools 
and colleges, recorded in detail their methods and 
results, and made plans of the buildings and appa- 
ratus. He describes minutely the architecture, agri- 
culture, and manufactures of the localities he visited, 
and nearly every page contains drawings of the pro- 
cesses and implements described, or sketches from na- 
ture. It is the journal of a man of keen observation 
and wide sympathy, but of one more anxious to learn 
than to criticise. The following extracts are taken 
from its pages and from letters written by the way : 

April 6. Left Kyoto on the 5th inst. The whole 
school and other friends, including the members of 
three churches, came to the station to see me off. It 
was a great trial for me to leave home, and especially 
my aged parents (both of them now 78 years of age), 
my dear wife, and our school, to which I am so much 
attached. My wife accompanied me to the SS. Khiva 
in the harbor of Kobe. I committed her to the care 
of Our Father, on whom she can rely far better than 
upon myself. 

April 7. Prayer for theological students. We 
passed through the Straits of Shimonoseki at 5.30. 
The weather was fair and I was not sick at all. 

April 8. Prayer for the fifth year class. We ar- 
rived at Nagasaki at 6.30 A. M. It is an excellent 
shelter for ships. The only defect of the harbor is 
its shallowness. The scenery from the steamer is 
fine. The harbor is surrounded by mountains, and 


the foreign residences are mostly on high ground. A 
boatman, took me over all the important streets for 
30 cents, and I saw some very fine tortoise-shell 
workmanship in the manufactory. 

There are two Japanese youths on board going to 
Odessa with a Russian priest. The meals are excel- 
lent. The servants are Chinese and Hindoos. 

April 12. We arrived at Hongkong at 10 A. 
M. I visited with Mr. H. the Anglican, Catholic, 
Chinese, and Mahometan cemeteries. The archi- 
tecture of the latter is very peculiar. They are all 
handsomely and tastefully laid out. They seem a 
paradise in this world. Visited the Chinese quarters. 
At one place the wares were spread upon the ground. 
Public speakers, singers, and fortune-tellers were 
there. In one street many painted women invite pass- 
ers-by into their houses. I visited a smoking gallery 
where were twenty Chinese in a small room smoking 
that cursed opium. I asked the editor of the 'China 
Mail' the proportion of opium smokers among the 
Chinese. He replied it was about the same as that 
of drinkers among Europeans. They smoke about 
10 cents a day. To my surprise the Chinese are a 
great commercial people. They have splendid stores 
fully supplied with both Chinese and foreign articles. 
The stores on the Queen's Road are beautiful. Most 
of the houses are three stories high. 

April 14th. * I went to the union church yester- 
day. It was thinly attended. In the afternoon Dr. C. 
preached in Chinese. I also heard Bishop B. preach 
to the seamen. There are several mission societies 
working in Hongkong, English, German, and one 
American. They have no regular Sabbath-schools 
established. Rev. Mr. Morrison commenced his mis- 


sionary work in Canton in 1807. Bishop Burden 
came to Hongkong in 1853. He has charge of St. 
Paul's College, about thirty pupils. His diocese ex- 
tends from Foochoo to Hongkong. No self-support- 
ing churches in China this side of Foochoo. The 
bishop has five pupils to teach one hour a day- A 
slow process! One hundred people belong to his 
church; one hundred people for thirty -one years' 
labor! He says the missionaries have not yet dis- 
covered a way to reach the higher Chinese classes. 
They are too proud of their own ways, and are not 
anxious to adopt western science or manners. In fact 
there is no movement among the higher classes to- 
wards European civilization either in social or politi- 
cal matters. Those who receive an education abroad 
have no voice. I see nothing in favor of the Euro- 
pean way. It is discouraging to educate the Chinese, 
because they come to get- English only and having got 
this, go away into business. China is honeycombed 
with secret societies. The people are tired of the gov- 
ernment. If they found a capable leader they would 
rise. In one sense they are all united against foreign- 
ers, but it is almost safe to say that there is no public 
spirit among the Chinese. They are discontented 
with the government. They have an instinct for 
taking care of themselves. There are no public baths 
like ours. Being so filthy it is wonderful they are 
so thrifty. They are the Oriental Jews. 


We left Nagasaki on the 8th inst. and had fine 
weather and calm seas nearly all the way to this place, 
which we reached on the 12th. I called on Rev. C. 
R. Hager, a missionary of your board, who secured a 


hotel for me and took me all over the city. So far as 
I can judge of the Chinese they seem to strive merely 
for money. For this they rise up early and sit up 
late; for this they would go without food and endure 
all manner of hardships. While here I think con- 
stantly of a nation for whose sake I am what I am. I 
called yesterday on the Bishop. He is somewhat dis- 
couraged and hopeless about the Chinese. But sooner 
or later China will move, though it may be slowly. I 
feel we ought to strike out from Christians' conversa- 
tion and writing the terms "hopeless" and "discour- 
aged." But hereby I do not intend to criticise the 
Bishop. I have full sympathy with him, and doubt- 
less if I were in his place I might have become dis- 
couraged long ago. I find great comfort in that our 
God is not simply the only God, but our Father also. 
It is a great trial to me to leave Japan, but ... I 
cannot write on this subject. I am glad to say that I 
can sleep much better and have experienced no sharp 
headaches ; but I find it a hard thing to write much. 

CEYLON, April 27, 1884. 

We reached Singapore after a hot voyage of five 
days. I did not go ashore because it was the Lord's 
day, and passed a very uncomfortable night, as the 
steamer was taking on coal. Those who went ashore 
were equally miserable on account of the heat. Mon- 
day I visited the city, which is inhabited by mixed 
races, most of the shopkeepers being Chinese. About 
the wharf are small houses in which poor natives and 
Chinese live. They are one story high and supported 
on posts. The vegetation is splendid. We found a 
carriage and drove to the city. The driver was a 
great cheat. Groves of cocoanut-trees growing to 

CEYLON. 251 

enormous heights were delightful to us. I bought a 
weekly paper, resembling our "Japan Mail," which 
cost 40 cents; also a most delicious pineapple, of a 
naked boy. The road to the city was well laid out, 
and the botanical garden, planted with tropical trees, 
is well kept up. The Maharaja of Johore visited the 
steamer to bid farewell to some friends. He was 
dressed in the English style, and wore a colored band 
of silk about the waist. Singapore is an island of 
undulating ground. If the straits were fortified no 
man-of-war would be able to pass through. It is well 
situated for growth, and may in the future become of 
more importance than Hongkong. 

April 23d. We arrived in the harbor of Penang 
this morning. The island is just west of the penin- 
sula of Malacca ; is about thirteen miles wide and nine 
long, and, except on the north, where the city is, hilly 
and mountainous. Owing to the intense heat of the 
tropical sun I did not accompany the few courageous 
ones who went ashore to visit the city. 

Sunday, 27th. The English service conducted by 
the chief steward was thinly attended. The Catholics, 
Mahometans, and Parsees, were not, of course, pres- 
ent. The younger officers regard it as a stupid and 
tiresome thing. One of them said, we are soon to meet 
with storms because missionaries are aboard. On this 
account the sailors are much afraid of us. I dislike 
written forms of prayer, but I liked to be with Chris- 
tians and enjoyed singing with them. We sighted 
the island of Sumatra on the afternoon of the 25th. 
To the northwest is the beautiful wooded Poolo Way. 
Splendid showers passed over its thick forests and a 
rare rainbow made me wish I was a painter. The 
heat is very oppressive. This morning we began to 


see the peaks of Ceylon in the distance, though I do 
not yet smell the odors of those famous spices ! We 
shall change our steamer to-morrow at Colombo and 
may have a chance to see that famous prisoner Arabi 
Pasha, as also to visit the temples of Kandy. I 
feel more and more what a rare opportunity I am en- 
joying, and think of those Italian cities before me; 
but above all I am thankful that I am once more 
invited to my dear America to see you. My heart 
constantly goes back to my dearly beloved Japan. I 
can only say for her sake I am now here. 

29th. We entered the harbor of Colombo early 
in the morning. The harbor is protected by a finely 
built breakwater on which is a railway and lighthouse. 
I drove with my Japanese friend to the house of Arabi 
Pasha. Leaving our carriage at the gate we entered 
the grounds. A young man came to ask us what we 
wanted. We presented our cards and told him we 
came to call upon Arabi Pasha. While we were talk- 
ing we saw a tall man dressed in white walking to and 
fro under the palm-trees. The young man took us to 
that gentleman and presented him our cards. He 
was glad to see us and ordered chairs. We exchanged 
salutations in the Oriental fashion. He asked the ob- 
ject of our visit, and whether we were going to Eng- 
land. He asked, also, where we learned English. 
We informed him that English was extensively taught 
in Japan. He then inquired whether England had 
possessions in Japan. We replied, of course, in the 
negative. Our conversation was interrupted by a 
short visit from some English ladies. He seemed to 
take more of a fancy to us than to his English visitors, 
but when I came to draw out something about Egypt 
he showed dislike to any conversation on that subject, 


remarking: "We cannot tell what will become of 
Egypt. God only knows. He will take care of it." 
He asked how large a military force we had in Japan, 
also how many men-of-war. To our replies he said, 
"Very good." He advised us to maintain a good army 
and navy. He inquired about our educational system, 
and was much pleased to hear of our progress in that 
respect. Whenever our answers pleased him he said, 
"very good." I asked about the religion of the Arabs. 
He replied "Every Arab is a Mahometan." He was 
pleased when I informed him that I had a copy of the 
Koran. I have not read it yet, but will do so. He 
said the Mahometan religion was spreading quite 
fast in India, and also in China. He asked what re- 
ligion I embraced, and my reply surprised him. He 
spoke through an interpreter, but occasionally he 
burst forth in broken English. His voice is tiger- 
like, but he has wonderfully pleasant features when 
he smiles. He is tall and rather fat ; his face is full 
and his eyes comparatively small ; his skin and hair 
are dark, and he wore a long white garment. He 
received profound obedience from his attendants, and 
seemed to be one loved and respected. When we bid 
him adieu he thanked us for calling upon him and 
gave us his autograph. 

Then we drove through groves of palm trees, and 
the streets and market of the town. The native 
streets are dirty and dusty, and everywhere were bad 
odors; the shops are small, scantily supplied, and 
very inferior to those of Singapore and to the Chinese 
shops of Hongkong. Most of the houses are of mud, 
with but one story. The cottages without the city, 
surrounded by green yards and tall palm-trees, are 
very picturesque. We saw several nicely built 


churches of European style; these are Catholic. 
Numbers of natives crowded about us, showing us rec- 
ommendations in English and Japanese, and saying, 
"Other people tell lies, but me tell no lies." They 
were like flies in midsummer, shameless and bold; 
they have no self-respect and are downright beggars. 
At the market were many fruits unknown to me ; the 
oranges are not so good as ours. I wished to ask 
many questions, but we were surrounded by so many 
shameless beggars and found ourselves amid such bad 
smells that, after buying some fruit, we cleared out. 

May 5th. We are opposite the island of Soko- 
tra, which is seventy-one miles long. It is an Eng- 
lish possession, inhabited by a few Arabian fishermen, 
and has a few valleys where vegetables can be grown. 

May 7th. Quite early in the morning we reached 
Aden, but on account of the quarantine were obliged 
to remain on the steamer. The town is built on the 
barren hills ; not a single tree in sight. In the after- 
noon we passed the Gate of Tears and saw the wrecks 
of six steamers lying not far apart. 

May 13th. Suez is yet a miserable place. There 
are few respectable houses, the rest being low Arabian 
mud houses without windows or tiles. Some of them 
are not over seven feet high, the roofs flat or like bee- 
hives, covered with hay and rubbish to prevent leak- 
age. The railway system is bad. There is no head 
manager. Near Alexandria our conductor and engi- 
neer had a terrible quarrel. Everything was in con- 
fusion. Tune is nothing to these Egyptians. 

May 17th. Arrived in Brindisi and took the train 
for Naples. The fields are in a high state of cultiva- 
tion. Miles and miles of grape-vines and olive-trees. 
The farmhouses neat and picturesque. The stations 

ROME. 255 

are substantial stone buildings and the second-class 
carriages far better than those of Japan. 


ROME, May 29, 1884 

I visited St. Peter's this morning, and was per- 
fectly bewildered by its richness and vastness. It is 
far beyond my description. I gave especial attention 
to the few Raphaels there. But my desire for the 
fine arts is too profound, and I must cut short my stay 
in Rome, for I shall be tempted to overdo. I could 
but pity those poor devotees who kissed the toe of that 
bronze statue of St. Peter. While I was gazing this 
afternoon at that beautiful interior of S. Paolo Fuori 
le Mura I began to wonder and query what St. Paul 
would say of the building, or rather of the builder, if 
he should rise to-day. I should like to ask both 
Peter and Paul their private opinions of these things 
done in their honor. I am myself too radical and too 
practical, and as I cannot get replies at once from 
these departed apostles must be contented with my 
own opinions and criticisms. I have called on our 
minister and Rev. A. G. Gray ; also upon the Minis- 
ter of Public Instruction. The rector of the Collegio 
Romano showed me over this Jesuit college, and I had 
a long conversation with Dr. Ottavio Grampini, the 
librarian. I have also visited several schools with the 
director of primary instruction. So I do not devote 
myself altogether to sight-seeing, but am trying to 
solve problems about this nation, its future and draw- 
backs. This is a great place to study humanity. I 
find traveling and sight-seeing both expensive and fa- 
tiguing, and shall try to find some good resting-place 
in Switzerland or Scotland before coming to you. I 


am now bound to get well. I am very careful about 
my expenses; a missionary ought not to travel like 
rich people. I must defer telling you my rich experi- 
ences in Naples and Rome. Some thoughts differ 
from the reality. I used to think of the clear and 
beautiful Tiber ; but what a dirty stream it is ! 


TUBIK, June 18, 1884. 

I remained six days in Florence, and spent much 
time in those splendid Pitti and Ufnzi galleries. But 
what interested me most were the relics of Savonarola, 
which are kept in an old cell where he used to stay. 
I had a most interesting interview with Dr. \ illari, 
the author of Savonarola's life. I found him rather 
indifferent to religious matters. He adopts Cavour's 
principle : a free church in a free state. He hesitated 
to reply when I inquired his own religious views, but 
of Christianity he said, " It is an excellent thing for 
the country, and has a powerful civilizing effect." 
To my question whether the spirit of Savonarola still 
survived he replied in the negative, to my great dis- 
appointment. Savonarola is dead, indeed, and the 
square where he was burned is not ornamented in his 
honor, but with mythological emblems. Alas! the 
spirit of this monk may be dead in the hearts of Ital- 
ians, but he still lives and preaches to those of the 
evangelical faith. I also called on Dr. Piccini, the 
Oriental scholar. He has many Chinese and Japan- 
ese manuscripts. I have visited many institutions of 
learning. I find the clergy of Italy less well educated 
than those of France and Germany. But I meet very 
many accomplished Oriental scholars, especially Dr. 
Teza of Pisa, who speaks German, Dutch, English, 

TURIN. 257 

French, etc., and reads Arabic, Japanese, Chinese, 
and many hieroglyphic languages. He is Professor of 
Sanscrit in the university. Social science and lan- 
guage is much studied at Pisa, philosophy in Naples. 

I am quite free from the fever which I contracted 
in the Red Sea, and had courage enough to climb that 
famous tower. It was towards evening, a calm 
and beautiful evening, too. In the west, over the 
Mediterranean Sea, there was a splendid sunset, and 
in the northwest the ragged peaks of the Apennines, 
while around me lay the city and the highly cultivated 
fields. I shall never forget that view in my life. 

I visited Genoa hastily, and passing under the lofty 
mountains came through the beautiful valley of the 

I attended a Protestant service in Turin. About 
twenty poorly dressed, ignorant-looking people, mostly 
women, a discouraging sight ! The work in Ro- 
man Catholic Italy seems disheartening. Their faith 
is not in God, but in religious forms. In company 
with Dr. Torre I visited the university and St. John's 

People here have a most wonderful skill in taking 
money out from a traveler's pocket. I have decided 
to go to Torre Pellico in the Waldensian valley to rest 
three or four weeks. I have several letters of intro- 
duction to eminent English people, members of Par- 
liament, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and others, 
and am perplexed whether I shall try to rest here or 
not. It may be best for me to do so, but the temp- 
tation to give this time to England is very strong. 
Although sight-seeing diverts my thought from Chris- 
tian work, it is hard for me not to think of Japan. I 
hope I shall gain strength enough to labor for Japan 
many coming years. 



TORRE PELUCO, July 1, 1884. 

This valley is directly west from Turin, and Torre 
Pellico is the largest community. Here is a college 
for young men and a school for girls. The population 
is of the Protestant faith. The American consul in 
Turin advised me to come here, because of the beau- 
tiful scenery and fine air. He said nothing of the 
community in this valley, but I knew something of it 
before and am much interested to know more about 
it and to study its history. You know what severe 
religious persecutions they have suffered. They are 
just well enough off to support themselves, but can 
do nothing else. But for their poverty they might 
be a leaven to Italy. I have already taken some ex- 
cursions to neighboring high hills, and have made 
many acquaintances whose society I enjoy. I cannot 
read or study much yet. As my health has been 
going down some years it may take some time to 
build it up. In your kind letter you urge me not to 
think about money for our school in Kyoto. But, 
dear sir, I have no single day in which my thought 
could be free trom Japan. My heart is in two places, 
heaven and Japan, yes, one more place, 
America. I desire to raise some money in America 
to start a medical school, for which I have already 
written to you with Dr. Berry. In Japan I also be- 
gan to receive some sympathy from friends in regard 
to founding some special chair in our school. The 
matter looks rather dubious yet, but I feel I must 
work for it. I must either sink or swim, succeed or 
die. But I must not write on this subject any more 
lest you send me a regular scolding. Allow me to 


send you my special request to pray for Japan in- 
tensely, fervently. My heart burns for her and I 
cannot check it. 

Mr. Neesima became deeply interested in the Wal- 
densians at Florence, where he visited their theologi- 
cal school, and remained over a month at Torre Pel- 
lico, studying their history, institutions, and manner 
of life. The following thoughts are from his journal 
of this period. Most of them were written from his 
bed, to which he was confined by a fever contracted on 
an excursion when, overtaken by a storm, he was com- 
pelled to pass the night in a shed on the mountains. 

" Silence. Silence is one of the virtues. There is 
much safety in silence. Wise men never talk much. 
As the tongue was given us to use for good purposes, 
use it for such. Vain and senseless talking often in- 
jures our reputation and causes us to lose our man- 
hood. I often noticed uneasiness and a chaff -like 
element in vain and talkative men. There is some- 
thing noble and serene in silence. It does not imply 
concealment, for the wicked often conceal their deeds 
with words. Silence is a manly forbearance. A 
man of silence is a blessing to a family and to society. 
It ought by no means to be accompanied by a bitter 
countenance, but rather with a cheerful one. Vain 
talking disturbs, but silence soothes and heals. We 
can easily weigh a man of vain talk, but cannot easily 
measure the depths of mind of a wisely silent man. 
But do not keep silence if by speaking we can do 
good or bear witness for the truth. O, how large a 
portion of our talk we spend upon the vain things of 
the world, and how little for the truth! When a 


word goes out from our mouth it is like water spilled 
on a parched soil ; there is no possibility of taking it 
back again. What is said, is said. It becomes a 
fact of our lives for which we must in the future give 
an account. But above all let us not harbor evil 
thoughts, for evil thoughts are the mainspring of evil 
and vain talking. 

"Poor creatures! we plan much and can do very 
little. Our plans are often defeated by something. 

"Receive others patiently. If one would be a hero, 
let him be patient. If any brother do not behave as 
he ought, wait for some occasion to drop a kind word, 
so as not to offend him. Never send away a brother in 
Christ when he comes. 'The sacred beast does not 
trample upon even a blade of grass, ' which means 
that no man, however stupid, no enemy, however bit- 
ter, is despised by the divine mind. Cause no man 
to fail. Bear the evils of others for God's sake, for 
He bears ours patiently. He does not correct us fu- 
riously, at once, but takes many occasions to heal us 
and many years to sanctify us. Let us by no means 
neglect our duty to others. Look at the ocean, how 
beautiful it is ! Yet it must receive many filthy things 
from the shores. It receives and purifies. We shall 
be happy men if we can be like it. Be minute for 
ourselves in everything, but when we come to deal 
with others, let us be careful not to offend them by 
a close calculation. 

" Roughness and Politeness. A rough manner with 
a kind heart is far better than a petty artificial polite- 
ness with no least meaning. Japan is one of the po- 
litest nations in the world, but, alas ! the heart is not 
in it. Artificial politeness is a national habit. This 
is not the result of a true sincerity. Politeness ought 


to be the necessary exponent of real love and kind- 
ness; but without sincerity it is a kind of deception. 

"Business Character. The Italians appear to be 
polite, but they lack business character. They are by 
nature easy-going, and would rather postpone busi- 
ness if possible. They will not move unless they are 
pushed by some one. They do not know how to be 
prompt. They talk much and are easily excited. 
Time is not money for them. Do what is to be done 
promptly. Waste no time in talking. Do it, and it 
is done. 

"Jfaw's Greatness. Man's greatness does not 
depend upon his learning, but upon his disinterest- 
edness in self. Those with much learning are apt 
to be more selfish than the unlearned. Let us look 
at Christ on the cross. He is our example. O how 
noble, how grand, how gracious, He seems to us! 
Let us forget self, and offer ourselves freely for the 
cause of truth. Let us also be truly penitent and 
humble. I call this man's greatness. 

" The True Hero-worshiper. Most Japanese are 
hero-worshipers. They are a difficult people to man- 
age except by a hero to whom they can look up. Yet 
they are very easily led away by a hero. They move 
on the sensational currents of the hero's opinions, and 
lack individuality. Most hero-worshipers are tinged 
with the same color as that of their hero. Their 
weak point is that they cannot rise above their hero. 
If he makes a mistake, or fails, they also do the same. 
If he falls, they fall likewise. This has been true 
of us, as close examination of our history will show. 
You will also find that there has been no hero in 
Japan who has done all for unselfish ends. He is apt 
to be more selfish than the common mass of the people. 


If the mind of our people be directed to the Hero of 
heroes, the greatest the world has ever produced, I am 
sure it would revolutionize the future of Japan. He 
is far above Socrates and Confucius, yet He is the 
friend of the poor. He is far above Alexander or 
Napoleon, yet He shed his own blood for humanity, in- 
stead of shedding that of hundreds of thousands of the 
innocent for his own gratification. He had no selfish 
aim in his life; He was perfectly holy, yet perfectly 
simple ; He had no place to rest his head, yet He sits 
for eternity on the throne of the universe. If the 
Japanese must have a hero, let them worship this one, 
the Hero of heroes. His ^worshipers will be tinted 
with the one best color, the color of godliness. 
Within this bound there is ample scope for freedom : 
man can choose any profession except bad and harm- 
ful ones. In following Him we shall obtain true hu- 
man liberty and certainly preserve our individuality. 
O how I long for our people to turn towards this 
Hero, so far above weak humanity. 

"If I teach again I will pay special attention to 
the poorest scholar in the class. If I can do that I 
believe I can be a successful teacher. 

"A Policy for our Training School. Let us be 
like an unpolished diamond. Never mind the out- 
ward rough appearance, if we can have the shining 
part within. Let these three factors be our perpet- 
ual mottoes : 1. Christ as our foundation stone. 2. 
Well qualified instructors. 3. Well selected library 
and thorough equipment of apparatus. These three 
factors will be the true shining part of our school. 
Too much of brick and mortar does not suit my hum- 
ble taste. I am terribly craving for the inner polish. 
That will certainly command the respect of thoughtful 
Japanese far more than brick, stone, and mortar. 


"Ordinary observers may take no notice of the un- 
polished diamond. A skilled jeweler sees at a glance 
what it is. Wonderful beauty within ! Never mind 
if the world takes no notice of us because we do not 
shine in society. If we could only have that wonder- 
ful beauty within, that were enough for us. If we 
have the life and light of Christ within us, then we 
are most precious diamonds, though we may seem 
rather dull and unpolished outwardly. 

"Always remember the disappointed. 

"Promises. Fulfill your promises promptly. 
Never postpone till to-morrow, for we may not see 
to-niorrow or may be fully occupied with something 
else. It is a sort of weakness and shame for a man 
to make all sorts of apologies to another. Let yea 
be yea, and nay be nay. Do, or not do. But never 
be sluggish or leave business half done. Earnestness 
is like a transparent crystal ; but love is like honey, 
always sweet and without any bitterness. 

"Try to say what we mean, and never anything 
which we do not really mean in our heart. It is a 
moral weakness to utter what we do not really mean. 
Straightforwardness is found mostly among the Anglo- 
Saxon races. 

"I find some Christians narrow and stupid. Yet 
Christianity ought to produce great-heartedness, activ- 
ity, and progress. Narrowness and stupidity are the 
results of a dead faith. Salt which has lost its savor 
is good for nothing. 

"There is great danger of our forming an opinion 
of others by looking at them in one case. We should 
be careful, because some who are quite deficient in 
one respect may be very efficient in another. There 
must be some defect even in a so-called perfect man. 


Discover his temper, his education, his surroundings, 
his circumstances in life. See how he behaves in 
some unusual case. Never criticise too soon, else we 
shall surely misjudge him. Judge with a Christian 
grace. Never be too harsh or too minute. Love oth- 
ers as our Heavenly Father loves us. If we have love 
on our side we shall lose all our petty criticising 
spirit. O, it is a most unhappy and unhealthy thing 
to have too critical eyes for others. When we dis- 
cover some defect in others, take it as it were upon 
ourselves and try not to repeat it. When we see 
great success among our brethren, wish more success 
for them. Never look upon our dear brother with an 
envious eye. If he is good, praise him, pray for him, 
and follow his example. I observed often that when 
some one hears good news of his friend he would say, 
'But he is so and so,' instead of rejoicing over his 
success. Weak human nature is prevailing every- 
where. There is a great deal of competition among 
educated people. Note: Be especially patient when 
we are sick or feeling unhappy. 

" Don't be a Jack-at-all-trades. In passing through 
some country towns I notice there are ever so many 
things shown in the shops, but when I closely exam- 
ine each article I find the stock of each kind is rather 
scanty. It is well for us to be widely informed on 
many subjects, but do not imitate those country 
shops, many articles, but a scanty supply of each. 
We ought to be well posted in at least one subject 
or professional study. It will be a rich treat to us. 
Success in our life will chiefly hang upon it. Let this 
be our defensive and offensive weapon on the battle- 
field of truth. Though our talent be small, let it be 
solid and weighty. Be single-minded for a single 


purpose. We shall sooner or later reach our mark. 
Never shoot one arrow into the air; aim at an object 
surely, and then let it go. If we miss, then repeat 
the process again and again until we can satisfy our- 
selves. I never knew of a single case of a talented, 
puffed up, yet unsettled man accomplishing anything 

"Never miss a rare opportunity to do good. Let 
our guns be always loaded. When we meet our game, 
aim at it and shoot it instantly; for our game will 
never wait for us. When we meet with any occasion 
to do good to another, don't let it go; don't wait 
for to-morrow; do it at once, for we may never have 
the occasion again. To shoot wild game is a mere 
pleasure, but to shoot men for our Master is a grave 
business. Let our guns be first loaded with living 
powder and bullets from on high, and be always 
ready. Many hunters of men carry their guns un- 
loaded. This explains why Christ's kingdom does 
not spread faster among men. 

" The Divine Fire. Many Christian ministers may 
have highest culture, and may write their sermons 
with much skill and thought, beautifully executed 
work, like a Grecian marble statue. Alas ! there is 
no heat in it. Heat must be caused by fire ; if there 
is no fire in the sermon to heat the hearer's heart, it 
is a serious affair. Divine fire is needed to heat 
men's hearts. This fire can only be got by daily 
seeking. Those who depend very much upon their 
talent and knowledge are very apt to forget to seek 
this much needed divine fire for themselves as well as 
for their hearers. How cold such a heart must be to 
a congregation ! It, is fireless and lifeless. If each 
professing Christian had this divine fire what would 


be the aspect of the Christian world! O Heavenly 
Father, give us this fire ! However small we may be, 
if we have genuine fire we shall consume even the 
whole world. How small a spark burned up a vast 
forest in Canada ! How small a lamp consumed two 
thirds of the great city of Chicago ! Sometimes one 
may make an artificial fire in imitation of the divine, 
but his hearers will sooner or later detect it ; it is a 
mock fire. God will not bless such. O let the divine 
fire be burning within us always. 

"When we are successful in life let us remember 
Christ's words: 'It is I.' He is the cause of all true 
success. When we are frightened, or disappointed, 
or alone, let us remember how he said, 'It is I.' O 
the consolation of Christ's presence ! 

"When I awoke this morning I thought of some 
prayer for some important event in the world. A 
single prayer, a single word or deed, may exert some 
vast influence. O what responsible creatures we are ! 
I wish I realized it more. 

"'It is finished.' Was ever dying speech so bold! 

"Is there any one in the world perfectly free from 
selfish ambition ? How can one know that he is free 
from such? Or is there any one perfectly free from 
the slightest deception? Can deception ever be erad- 
icated from civilized society ? How many of us can 
say to God, 4 I have lived my life without the slight- 
est ambition or deception ' ? Has any one ever seen, 
or could we expect to see, such a perfect type of hu- 
manity among the race of Adam, except the Son of 
God? It is too foolish to entertain such a question, 
but I would like to meet such a person. 

"To be aimless is to be lifeless. A doubting mind 
never accomplished anything. If we have a doubt 


then, first clear up the doubt. A half-way scientist, 
or scholar, or Christian, or statesman, or benefactor, 
is of no account in the world." 

On the 5th of August, Mr. Neesima started from 
Turin for Switzerland by the way of Lake Como and 
the St. Gothard pass with Dr. Alex. Thompson, who 
had been laboring among the Jews and Turks for 
thirty-one years. At Goschenen he left his compan- 
ion and proceeded on foot with a German gentleman 
whom he met at the latter place. What followed is 
best described in his own words. 

LUCERNE, August 9, 1884. 

I wrote these inclosed papers at the Hotel du Mont 
Prosa on the St. Gothard pass on the 6th inst., when 
I was greatly troubled by my heart there. I felt 
something quite wrong in my breathing just a mile 
before I reached the pass. I requested a German 
gentleman who accompanied me to leave me behind, 
because I could not keep up with him. Accordingly 
he went on. I stopped to take breath every ten yards, 
but after a great struggle I reached the hotel in the 
pass. After resting a while I took my dinner, but 
had no appetite, and also began to cough. After rest- 
ing further on a sofa I felt myself growing worse and 
worse and asked for a doctor, but there was none. I 
took a tablespoonful of brandy, to arrest my chill, and 
also applied mustard. Aboiit this time I began to 
think that it might possibly be the Lord's will to take 
me away from this changeable world to that unchange- 
able and glorious one. At this moment my thought 
for Japan, my plan for mission work, my constant day- 
dream to found a Christian university, my tender feel- 


ing for my wife and parents, my gratitude to Mr. 
Mrs. Hardy, came up at once like a volcanic fire. 
Still above all these feelings I believe I perfectly re- 
signed myself to the hand of my Heavenly Father, 
and asked him repeatedly to receive my soul to his 
bosom if it be his will. While I was suffering from 
a most distressed feeling in my chest, how happy and 
how thankful I was for the Father's kind care over 
me, and especially for his forgiving grace manifested 
through his son Jesus Christ. 

Then I sat up in bed and wrote the inclosed will on 
two sheets of drawing paper which I then had with me 
for sketching. While writing that I almost fainted 
away. Towards evening I began to feel a little bet- 
ter, and took a cup of tea. I slept quite well. On 
the following morning I was still better, but had not 
strength to start for Andennatt, so I took a carriage 
from Airolo and reached Andermatt about dinner 
time, resting quietly there that afternoon. Desiring 
to see a doctor I started for Lucerne on the 8th. My 
chest was examined by Dr. Stocker. He warned me 
to keep myself quiet for a few days, as he found my 
heart out of sound state. 

I desire to keep these papers, because I had then a 
most unparalleled feeling I ever felt in my past life. 
Since then I feel more and more my life is not for me. 
Whether I live or die I must live or die for Christ. 
May the Lord ever keep this sin-wounded soul under 
his protecting hand, and count me as a least one in 
his kingdom through the righteousness of Jesus 

His most unworthy servant, 



I am a native of Japan and a Christian missionary 
to my native land. On account of my ill -health I was 
obliged to leave my native land. I came from Milan 
to Andermatt yesterday and took a room at the Hotel 
Oberalp. I started on a trip to the St. Gothard pass 
with a German gentleman this morning. As I found 
myself unwell he left me here and went on to Airolo. 
I found myself hard of breathing. It must be some 
trouble in my heart. My goods are in the Hotel 
Oberalp with some money. If I die please send a tel- 
egram to Pastor Jurino, 51 Via Torino, Milan, and 
ask him to take charge of my body. May the kind 
Heavenly Father receive my soul to his bosom. Au- 
gust 6, 1884. J. H. Neesima. Whoever reads this 
writing, pray for Japan, my dear native land. I 
would ask the Pastor Jurino to bury me in Milan and 
send this writing to Hon. Alpheus Hardy, 4 Joy 
Street, Boston, Mass., U. S. A., as he and his wife 
have been my benefactors these twenty years. May 
the Lord give them ample rewards both now and here- 
after. Send a telegram to Mr. Hardy at once. 
Please cut and send a little portion of my hair to my 
dear wife and aged parents in Ky5to, Japan, as a 
token of the inseparable bond of union in Christ. My 
plan for Japan will be defeated. But thanks be to 
the Lord that He has done so much for Japan. I 
trust He will yet do the wonderful work there. May 
the Lord raise up many true Christians and noble 
patriots for my dear fatherland ! Amen and amen. 

LUCERNE, August 17. 

I bought an Alpinestock at Milan, intending to do 
much walking. But my plan is defeated. Still I 
take what comes to me. I have learned in my expe- 


rience to make a resolution never to be sorry or dis- 
couraged. O hard resolution ! I am now gathering 
materials on the Swiss higher education. Then I shall 
visit Prof. Christlieb at Bonn. While I meet these 
trials on account of my health, yet I find sunshine al- 
ways before me. I have received a cordial invitation 
from the Mission House at Basle, and expect to go 
there next week. 

On the advice of the physician consulted at Lu- 
cerne Mr. Neesima abandoned the walking tour he 
had contemplated in Switzerland and started for Eng- 
land via Basle, Wiesbaden, Bonn, Brussels, and Kot- 
terdam. He remained some time with his old friends 
at Wiesbaden, and after a fortnight in London and a 
visit to the Universities of Cambridge and Oxford, 
sailed from Liverpool for New York, where he ar- 
rived September 27, 1884. On the way to Boston he 
passed a few days at New Haven with President Por- 
ter. His journal of October 1st contains the brief 
entry : " How happy I was when Boston came in sight, 
and I saw the gilded dome of its State House and the 
spires of its churches. How kindly I was welcomed 

On October 7th he left Boston for Columbus, Ohio, 
to be present at the seventy -fifth annual meeting of 
the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign 
Missions, and made a short address at the evening 
meeting of the 10th. On his return to Boston he 
wrote an appeal in behalf of a higher Christian educa- 
tion for Japan. This appeal, indorsed by the secreta- 
ries of the Board, by Presidents Seelye and Hopkins, 
was printed for private circulation among the friends 
of education, and is given below, together with the 


letter addressed at the same time to the Prudential 


Dear Sirs, Allow me to submit to you the fol- 
lowing statements to invite your attention to my hum- 
ble scheme for the speedy evangelization of Japan. 
Before I dwell upon the subject just mentioned, I 
first beg your attention to the past and present condi- 
tion of the country. 

Japan, as you well know, was once opened to for- 
eign intercourse, and also to Jesuit enterprise, in the 
sixteenth century. But for certain reasons the ports 
were closed to all western nations except the Dutch, 
and Roman Catholicism was checked by inhumanly 
persecuting and exterminating the devotees of the 
Cross, numbering probably more than 600,000. 
Japan thus became a hermit nation, so isolated and 
so exclusive. She would have nothing to do with the 
outside world. From that time it remained a rigid 
law of the country to fire upon every black vessel (as 
foreign vessels were then called by us) seen approach- 
ing our coasts, until we were compelled by your diplo- 
matists to make a treaty with the United States. 
This was the day dawn of our history. The people 
were suddenly awakened from their profound morning 
dreams. Party spirit at once displayed itself. The 
commotion of the country was fearful. Bloodshed 
and assassination occurred here and there. Soon the 
late Revolution burst forth, the result of which was 
most marvellous even to our eyes. The despotic gov- 
ernment of the Shogun was crushed, and the reigning 
power of the Mikado was restored in the sacred person 


of the present emperor. Those proud minds which 
had fought for the cause of the Mikado and had also 
determined to shut out foreigners from the coast, sud- 
denly changed their views and turned out to be the 
most zealous advocates of western civilization. The 
anti-foreign spirit, which might have been a great 
barrier to progress, was crushed out by those strong 
hands. The affairs of the country began to be con- 
ducted on quite a different basis. Zealous, talented, 
and far-sighted patriots were appointed by the em- 
peror to administer the nation's affairs. A cabinet 
was formed, and eight ministers appointed. All the 
feudal daimio gave up their possessions to the govern- 
ment for the common good of the nation. Their re- 
tainers, the proud samurai, were ordered to lay aside 
their swords. The etta, the outcast of society, were 
permitted to be numbered among the people. The 
military system of European nations was at once in- 
troduced. War vessels were built and purchased, 
dockyards were constructed. An active competition 
arose between native and foreign steamship compa- 
nies. Post-offices were everywhere established, and 
telegraph wires were stretched throughout the country. 
The public schools were constantly improved. Tun- 
nels were cut and railways were built to connect im- 
portant commercial centres. The streets of Tokyo 
began to be lighted by gas lamps, and foreign car- 
riages ran in its thoroughfares. An American tram- 
way was laid out in the capital. Many banks were 
organized on the European model. Chambers of 
commerce and houses of exchange were also started 
in several important cities. A police system was 
carefully wrought out and is well managed. Courts 
of justice were erected in the large towns, and the 


rights of person and property became far better pro- 
tected. The common and high school systems were 
first started in the year 1872, and so far as outward 
form is concerned, are now very successful. About 
the same time the T5kyo University was founded by 
the emperor. There are now more than 2,000 stu- 
dents in its care. The printing press began active 
operations, and newspapers and magazines were issued 
with triple speed. Common intelligence is spreading 
quite fast. Materialistic science is getting to have a 
mighty sway to crush out the old superstitions. The 
pagan religions are losing the support both of the gov- 
ernment and the people. Public lecturers are diligent 
in advancing their own political and scientific opinions 
or theories. Self-government is becoming the topic 
of discussion among inquiring minds. 

All these material and social changes have sprung 
up like magic within less than twenty years, and this 
very fact has induced us to believe that the evangelis- 
tic work in Japan might as well be done in the same 
way. Yea, the present changing condition of the 
country has prompted us to desire that the gospel be 
now introduced there with zeal and energy, else the 
anti-Christian elements of materialism and socialism 
will soon become the greatest barrier to its healthy 
progress. Buddhism and Confucianism will not be 
much in our way. But these modern unbelieving ele- 
ments from abroad will certainly be our future foes. 
The government has lately recognized the tendency to 
lawlessness, discontent, and disorder. Some cry out 
for liberty without morality, and eagerly run after civ- 
ilization without religion. Crimes of all descriptions 
are more frequent than ever before. The increase of 
the police force is accompanied by an increase in the 


number of criminals. The introduction of moral in- 
struction in the schools is unavailing if the teachers 
themselves are without morality. Failing thus in 
every attempt to improve her subjects, the govern- 
ment has begun unconsciously to seek for something 
better than the mere product of human minds. 

On the other hand, the Christian education carried 
out by your Mission in Kyoto has lately begun to 
show forth its great importance and its bright pros- 
pects. Though the institution is yet young it has al- 
ready sent out forty-six graduates from the English, 
and twenty-eight from the theological course. These 
graduates, though they may be inferior to those who 
have studied at the government university of T^kyo, 
yet in their high moral tone and zealous Christian 
character command the great respect of the people. 
The governor of a province remarked, after an in- 
terview with one of our graduates: "There is no 
young man like him within our province. What a 
pure aim and high moral tone that young fellow has ! " 
The editor-in-chief of the Tokyo "Weekly" is also 
one of our graduates. A few years ago he started 
that Christian paper in our capital with the feeble 
support of our young churches, and he was obliged to 
put in all his own private means. But he works on 
bravely for the sake of its utmost necessity, and not 
for gain ; ready to confront any opponents who assail 
the Christian religion. 

The moral victory manifested among the young 
students in our training-school is a great marvel in 
the eyes of our Kyoto citizens. It is truly an unpre- 
cedented fact in our national life. This Christian in- 
stitution, so recently started there, has already shown 
forth its healthy fruit. We have never tried to make 


ourselves known much. But somehow we are known 
among the leading men of Japan. They begin to 
speak well of our school. Some of them have already 
sent their sons and friends to be educated under Chris- 
tian influences, and they would the more gladly do so 
if we could raise higher the standard of our school. 
They urge us very strongly to found chairs for differ- 
ent professional studies on their account. They fur- 
ther tell us that if we will do so, we can save many, 
many youth from falling into bad company, youthful 
vices, and, finally, utmost ruin. It is a great disap- 
pointment to them to have to send their sons away to 
other schools to be further educated after finishing the 
five years' course with us. In Japan schools are gen- 
erally most dangerous places for young men if there 
be no teaching of Christianity. Materialistic influ- 
ence is inseparably combined with licentious practice. 
A rich merchant, who lives some way from us and who 
is quite unknown to us, visited Kyoto some years ago, 
and at the very first interview with a trustee of our 
school promised to furnish us at least 5,000 yen, if 
we would found a law school in connection with the 
Doshisha. He has been friendly to us ever since, 
and his two daughters are now being educated at the 
Kyoto Home sustained by your Mission. The cry for 
professional studies comes to us not only from outsid- 
ers, but also from our churches. They wish us to 
start a medical school in Kyoto. It was about three 
years ago, when Christian workers sent three delegates 
to Dr. J. C. Berry at Arima, his summer retreat, to 
request him to ask the American Board to found a 
medical school in connection with the training-school 
in Kyoto. They had found out that Christian physi- 
cians would be a great help to the cause. When we 


held the meeting of our Home Missionary Society at 
Kyoto last year, all the delegates of the churches con- 
nected with your Mission talked upon the subject 
again, and sent another united appeal to the doctor 
for the medical school. They all agreed that if he 
could obtain an appropriation from the American 
Board to start it in Kyoto, they would do something 
towards buying grounds and building edifices. Each 
expressed the necessity for such a school in the present 
stage of our Christian work. I am sure that if such 
an institution be founded on a Christian basis, as is 
the case with our school, it will greatly promote not 
only the work of evangelization but the general wel- 
fare of poor humanity. As Dr. Berry has already 
appealed to your public for this cause, I hope and 
pray he will be successful in raising a fund sufficient 
to carry out his noble purpose. 

Just a few days before I left Japan for this country, 
about seventy eminent citizens of Kyoto held two 
meetings for the purpose of hearing us on the subject 
of Christian education. Dr. J. D. Davis and others 
were invited to address them on that subject. Ac- 
cordingly we did so and won their hearty approval. 
They agreed to raise funds sufficient for the endow- 
ment of several professional chairs in our school in the 
year 1890, when our emperor will carry out his 
pledges relative to the formation of our Constitution. 
Their idea is to commemorate that important event in 
our political history. We expressed our gratitude for 
this noble gift, but refused to accept it unless we were 
given full liberty to dispose of it on a Christian 
basis. To this bold statement they made no objec- 
tion. They requested us to take the matter into our 
own hands and to carry it out for them. We never 


dreamed of such a thing, even two years ago. It is a 
great wonder to us that the world begins to run after 
us with such confidence. However, we are not too 
sanguine. We will calmly wait and see what they 
will do for us. 

A recent interview between some of our leading 
statesmen and missionaries indicates clearly that the 
former are anxious to know something of Christianity. 
I believe some of them feel keenly their treatment by 
foreign powers as a heathen nation. Recent news 
from home informs me that some political leaders and 
editors are beginning to cry out for religious liberty 
and have published very bold articles in favor of 
Christianity. The bold action recently taken by the 
government in severing its connecction with existing 
pagan religions has induced me to say with a pro- 
found awe that God is fighting for us. 

With regard to our young churches, I think they are 
worthy of your notice. As everywhere else, they have 
been thus far despised and rejected. But within a 
year or two they have stepped forward to a front rank 
in society. The last report informs me that besides 
helping themselves they have raised nearly one thou- 
sand dollars for purely mission work, and some of 
them devoted more than a quarter of their income to 
this purpose. When we, the delegates from all the 
churches of the empire, met last year in Tokyo at the 
third national conference, we participated in a most 
blessed revival then taking place in the bosom of 
those churches which welcomed us there. The spirit 
of the conference, kindled by this revival, toned us up 
and prompted us to hope that the 36,000,000 of our 
fellow-creatures might largely be reached within this 
century. Other revivals followed here and there: 


especially one which burst forth like fire within the 
walls of our training-school and gave us fresh courage 
and conviction that the whole kingdom of the Rising 
Sun would become the kingdom of the Son of Right- 
eousness and Peace. Ten years ago we prayed that 
doors might be opened, but now we pray that efficient 
laborers may enter doors so widely open. It is most 
painful to deny the Macedonian cry coming from all 
quarters. When we Christian laborers come together 
either accidentally or designedly we have no topic of 
discussion but the direct Christian work at hand. 
"What shall we do?" is the common phrase among 
us ; and after long observation and careful considera- 
tion, we have come to the conclusion: Educate and 
raise up efficient native preachers. 

I beg your pardon for dwelling so long upon the 
historical facts before presenting a plan for your con- 
sideration, but I felt it necessary to do so in order 
that you should see our present imperative need. I 
now beg your attention to the following scheme : 

First, the highest possible education should be 
given to the Christian ministry. 

Second, the thorough education of Christian phy- 
sicians would be of great auxiliary assistance. 

Third, the foundation of chairs in Jurisprudence, 
Political Science, Political Economy, Philosophy, 
History, Literature, etc. , would be a strong attraction 
to bring the choicest students under Christian influ- 

I regard the first as a direct Christian work and 
expect to dwell upon it hereafter, and would also call 
the second of scarcely less importance ; and the third 
I might call an indirect work, but it is a process si- 
lently leavening, influential and powerful. To direct 


preaching we may meet much opposition, but to this 
indirect effort none will object. It will be like a mo- 
ther's gentle influence over her children, too dear to 
be refused and too impressive to be forgotten. How- 
ever, it is not our aim simply to make them friends 
of Christianity, but also to win them to Christ so 
that they may have life. Why can we not endeavor 
to reach our future leaders ? Why can we not be fish- 
ers for men of all grades? As the guns of our enemy 
are of modern improvement, we ought also to have the 
best possible guns to discharge the power given from 
on high. Who can subdue God's elect? We must 
fight under his banner ; we must win the whole Japan- 
ese empire for Christ. At present the matter seems 
to us but a vague dream, but we look to God to help 
us to realize this dream. I know too well that you 
cannot undertake the second and third schemes with- 
out some special donation for those purposes, because 
your chief aim is the spread of the gospel. So, lay- 
ing those aside for the moment, I beg permission to 
dwell upon the first scheme. This is the dearest to us 
and is not new to you. You have already carried out 
the plan at Kyoto and have successfully sent out a 
number of efficient native workers ; and we gratefully 
acknowledge the boldness of the step you have taken. 
The establishment of theological schools by our Pres- 
byterian, Methodist, and English brethren makes the 
education of the native ministry a prevalent topic 
among missionaries in Japan. The success your mis- 
sionaries have had is largely due to their readiness to 
accept our participation in the work. Though they 
are Americans in citizenship, they are Japanese in 
heart. They stand affectionately by us and with us, 
and most of us appreciate this more and more. [Mr. 


Neesima then proceeds to enumerate the special needs 
of the school and to detail his plans for its future.] 
Some of you may feel that we incline too far towards 
the intellectual side. But how, without Christian ed- 
ucation, can a handful of missionaries reach so many 
swarming millions? You will surely find it a slow 
and discouraging process. They are not even allowed 
to live in the interior of the country. Let them cast 
their net where they can catch the best fish, I mean 
the class of students belonging to the so-called samu- 
rai, the privileged bearers of two swords. [Here fol- 
lows the description of this class, already quoted on 
page 170.] The success your Mission has thus far had 
in Japan is chiefly owing to the training-school which 
your missionaries so early established in the very 
heart of the empire, the ancient capital of the sacred 
Mikado. Without a single exception, the Christian 
laborers educated there and now so nobly engaged in 
the work belong to the samurai class. Surely you do 
not regret that bold enterprise. We do not ask you 
to sustain our primary schools, as is the case in Tur- 
key and China, for our people take care of the pri- 
mary education of their children. Neither do we ask 
you to help our churches, because most of them sup- 
port themselves. It is also a shame to the red-blood 
Japanese to beg for money. But I willingly offer 
myself to bear it for the sake of giving the blessings 
of the gospel to my fellow-countrymen. But we are 
constrained to ask you for this special provision both 
on account of the mighty pressure upon us and the 
brighter prospect near at hand. We are now in a 
revolutionary and transition period. Never was there 
such an occasion in our past history, and doubtless 
never will there be such in the future. This may be 


the very appointed time of God to save our nation. 
If we lose this fairest opportunity we fear it will never 
come back to us again. If we do not discharge our 
duty now, what will they say to us in that awful day 
before the throne of judgment? When I think of it 
my blood boils within my veins and my heart aches. 
I admire your motto: "Strike while the iron is hot." 
Do intensify your force ; do try to finish your chief 
work with a quarter of a century. Then you can ap- 
ply the same force elsewhere. In the long run it will 
be more economical. 

Dear Sirs: I fear I have detained you too long. 
If any of my remarks offend you, I earnestly beg your 
pardon. But as a humble missionary of the cross and 
a sincere lover of my native land I cannot keep silence 
within me ; and if I do, I fear I will cry out even in 
my midnight dreams. Allow me to add further that 
I have poured out my heart and my prayers, as well 
as my tears upon these pages. I found it a risk to 
my impaired health. But it was my fixed determi- 
nation to win your favor at whatever cost. So I sin- 
cerely and prayerfully request your attention upon 
these plans. May God show you his own way. 
Your unworthy friend and fellow-laborer, 



Old Japan is defeated. New Japan has won its vie* 
tory. The old Asiatic system is silently passing away, 
and the new European ideas so recently transplanted 
there are growing vigorously and luxuriantly. Within 
the past twenty years Japan has undergone a vast 
change, and is now so advanced that it will be impos* 


sible for her to fall back to her former position. She 
has shaken off her old robe. She is ready to adopt 
something better. The daily press so copiously scat- 
tered throughout the empire is constantly creating 
among readers some fresh desire and appetite for the 
new change. Her leading minds will no longer bear 
with the old form of despotic feudalism, neither be 
contented with the worn-out doctrines of Asiatic mor- 
als and religions. They cried out for a constitution 
a few years ago, and have already obtained a promise 
from the emperor to have it given them in the year 
1890. The pagan religions seem to their inquiring 
minds mere relics of the old superstition. 

The compulsory education lately carried out in the 
common schools, amounting in number to almost thirty 
thousand, is proved to be a mighty factor to quicken 
and elevate the intelligence of the masses. The Im- 
perial University at Tokyo is sending out men of high 
culture by the hundred every year to take some re- 
sponsible positions either in the governmental service 
or private capacities. Another university will soon 
be founded by the government at Osaka, the second 
important commercial city of the empire, to accommo- 
date the youths so anxiously craving the higher educa- 
tion. It will be out of the way for me to dwell here 
upon the material progress Japan has so recently made. 
But let it suffice to state that the waters of her coasts 
are busily plowed by her own steamers. Public roads 
are constantly improved. Tunnels are being cut here 
and there, and railways are being laid to connect im- 
portant commercial points. Telegraph wires are 
stretched throughout the whole length and breadth of 
the empire. Surveying what she has accomplished 
within so short a period, we cannot help thinking th"t 


she is bound to adopt the form of European civiliza- 
tion, and will never cease until she be crowned with 
success in accomplishing her national aim. 

In order to bring about the recent change and pro- 
gress she has painfully sacrificed her precious blood 
as well as her vast treasure. Indeed, her victory has 
been dearly purchased. It was a quick work, and 
was well done. It was a sudden movement, but to 
our great wonder, very few mistakes have been made 
in her past course. She has tried her best as far as 
her capacity would allow. The most serious period 
of our political revolution is nearly passed, and soci- 
ety as well as the government will soon precipitate 
into some new shape. But what shape? To the 
writer of this article our immediate future seems a 
more serious problem than the past. The question is 
necessarily rising among us, what will be our future? 
True, she is destined to have a free constitutional 
government; she is bound to have her people thor- 
oughly educated. It will be a grand achievement if 
a free constitution and higher education be secured to 
her people. But these two factors may be proved to 
be the very elements apt to bring out freedom of opin- 
ions, and hence the terrible battles of free opinions. 
A fearful national chaos might be her fate if nothing 
intervene to prevent it. If the nation be allowed to 
take her own course as she does now, hope for her re- 
generation might forever be gone. But in the time of 
need, Providence, which rules the nations with infinite 
wisdom, has stepped in to save us from this national 
calamity and despair. It was neither too soon nor 
too late when the missionaries of the cross from Amer- 
ica landed on our shore to proclaim the soul-saving 
gospel to the people. Through their earnest labor and 


constant prayers the foundation of the Christian 
church was soon laid. 

After some years' experience all the missions en- 
gaging in the field unanimously adopted one general 
policy as the best possible method for prosecuting the 
evangelical work there; that is, to train the native 
Christians for the Christian ministry. There now are 
more than half a dozen schools of that nature in the 
country. Men thus raised on our own soil have gone 
out here and there to found new churches, and what 
they have already achieved in converting many souls 
to the new faith within a short period seems to us a 
fact greater than mere human agency could have ac- 
counted for. "God is fighting for us," might be our 
cry. The mission, started in the central part of 
Japan under the auspices of the American Board only 
sixteen years ago, has been much blessed and has 
lately reached the joy of a great harvest. The last 
report informs us that there were 33 churches with 
3,000 communicants, 14 ordained pastors, and 9 acting 
pastors. A missionary in the field wrote to the Board 
last July, stating thus : " Six churches have been or- 
ganized in connection with our mission since January, 
an average of one a month." Through the wise guid- 
ance of the brethren, the missionary spirit has been 
much fostered among these churches. They have al- 
ready organized a Home Mission Society, and also 
an Educational Society, to cooperate with the mission 
of the said Board for carrying out the gospel work. 
It is a small start. But a desire for self-support is 
already manifested in their attempt. I am glad to 
mention here that most of our churches are self-sup- 
porting, and some of them have never received any 
pecuniary aid from the Mission from their very begin- 


ning. This is a brief summary of what the mission 
of the Board has accomplished since it gained its foot- 
hold in the country. But causes of its very success 
must not be neglected to be mentioned here. 

Of course the fact cannot be denied that the field 
has been much traversed by the feet of those brethren 
who bore the glad tidings of peace to those anxious 
souls. But a good share might be attributed to the 
educational institution of the Board, established at 
Kyoto some years ago, for furnishing to the churches 
the most ardent and self-denying native brethren. 
This institution gives instruction five years in English 
and three years more in theology. It is quite young, 
and is not yet fully equipped, yet it seems destined to 
be the salt of the nation. It was founded thoroughly 
on the Christian basis, and is now publicly recognized 
by the people as a school of Jesus. It became a cen- 
tre to attract many youths from all quarters of the 
country. Most of them come to the school unbeliev- 
ing. Before they leave it, all, with few exceptions, 
become Christians. 

As there is a constant demand for enlarging and 
improving the school, the Mission Board has recently 
taken an extraordinary measure to reinforce it with 
more men and more means. More edifices have been 
built. More apparatus has been purchased. More 
volumes have been added to the library. The pre- 
paratory course in English has lately been much im- 
proved. The theological course has also taken a bold 
step to enlarge its curriculum. Still there is much to 
be done. The present provision might do very well, if 
there were not any institutions of learning in the coun- 
try much higher than our mission school. But the 
government's university has made a great advance in 


the latter years in sending out a large number of its 
graduates. The time will soon come with us when the 
poorly educated will be obliged to retire from the pub- 
lic service as leaders of society. In order to occupy a 
very front rank as Christian preachers in such a so- 
ciety, our young men must receive the first-class edu- 
cation. The ten years' experience in Japan has given 
us a strong conviction that the best possible method to 
evangelize her people is to raise up the native agency, 
and such an agency can be only secured by imparting 
the highest Christian culture to the best youths to be 
found there. It may be a costly work. But it will 
surely pay well at the end. Of course the mission 
work ought to be a faith work. But with us the in- 
tellectual culture cannot possibly be ignored. The 
better educated can do a larger work. Better quali- 
fied preachers can organize self-sustaining and self- 
propagating churches much faster than the ill-quali- 
fied. So imparting a broad culture to our best youths 
will be a most indispensable means to win and pre- 
pare them for the Master's work. Besides this great 
demand to carry out the evangelical work, there is 
another thing to be considered for higher education. 

We have some youths with us whose circumstances 
do not allow them to become preachers, or who are 
not fit to be preachers. They come to us and take 
five years' academical course with us. But finding 
no provision in our school for higher courses other 
than theology, they are obliged to go somewhere else 
to pursue further studies. They are led to Christ 
while in the mission school, but there is danger of 
their forsaking Him as they go elsewhere. They are 
yet young in years. Their faith is not strongly con- 
firmed. They still require further care. They are 


like treasures too precious to be lost in the depths 
of unbelief. The institution to which they would be 
likely to go would be the Imperial University at To- 
kyo, where Christianity is entirely excluded, on ac- 
count of its connection with the state. There their 
faith might be chilled. They might wander away 
from the path they once found. What shall we do 
with such? It is a serious problem to be solved. 
The only way we have found is to provide chairs for 
a few studies, by which they would be likely to be 
benefited for future usefulness. It would help and 
push our evangelical work if a medical school could be 
established, and Christian medical men raised in it 
to be sent out with Christian preachers, hand in hand, 
to carry out the Master's mission. For this cause a 
lately returned missionary, who spent in Japan more 
than twelve years, has made an urgent appeal to the 
American public. But as it required a large sum of 
money to start it, there has been no adequate response 
to his request. 

There is another movement, started at Kyoto last 
year, to found chairs of Political Science, History, 
Literature, and Philosophy in connection with this 
school. Those who are connected with it were com- 
pelled to take this decisive step, because in the first 
place they felt they could keep those youths within 
the sacred walls of a Christian school for completing 
their special studies, and in the second place they 
thought they could attract those who would gladly 
come to the school if such instruction be given besides 
theology. It may seem to some friends here that we 
are getting out of the track, and starting something 
alien to the original plan of the school. We did not 
intend it at first, ourselves. But present circumstances 


have necessarily led us to take this step. It might 
also be charged by some that we are too ambitious to 
push the work. To such we would reply that we fear 
we are left behind the times. If we are destined to 
be the salt of the earth, we should not allow ourselves 
to be left behind. Why should not we attempt to win 
and foster the rising youths who may lead the nation 
in the future? What the people in the North have 
done for elevating the blacks in the South, and what 
the people in the East have done in rearing up the 
new people in the West, by planting strong colleges 
and seminaries, besides sending them missionaries, 
may point out the true way for lifting up the coming 
race in Japan. If we confine ourselves simply to theo- 
logical instruction, the sphere of our influence in soci- 
ety may be limited only to Christian churches. But 
if we give them some studies other than theology, 
under thorough Christian instructors, there will be a 
grand chance for us to grasp a certain class of the 
youths, and evangelize them within the school walls, 
whilst there might be no other ways to reach them. 

We believe Christianity is intended to benefit man- 
kind at large. Why should we not undertake to ex- 
tend our influence toward the higher sphere as well as 
toward the lower, that we might win all men to Christ ? 
Why should we seriously object to raise up Christian 
statesmen, Christian lawyers, Christian editors, and 
Christian merchants, as well as Christian preachers 
and teachers, within the walls of our Christian insti- 
tutions? It is our humble purpose to save Japan 
through Christianity. The souls and bodies of our 
Orientals ought to be thoroughly purged, and conse- 
crated to Christ for establishing his glorious kingdom 
in the earth as in heaven. If we do not raise up men 


after God's own heart in the different spheres of our 
society to leaven the whole lump, we fear the seed of 
destruction will be soon sown by other agents while 
we make this delay. Remember what our Saviour 
said in Luke xvi. 8 : " For the children of this world 
are in their generation wiser than the children of 

There might be some undue fear that such a provi- 
sion of those higher studies would naturally draw away 
ambitious students from the theological course. It 
may be, but we trust we shall receive a larger supply 
of students in the academical course, so that some 
could be spared for other studies without much loss to 
the theological department. On the contrary we may 
possibly attract some students to it from the other 
courses. Some evil may arise in such an undertaking, 
but it may be overbalanced by the good accomplished 
by it. Now allow us to state a few reasons for this 
undertaking : 

1. Such a provision will detain the youths for 
further studies in the school after finishing the aca- 
demical course. It will help them to develop and 
strengthen their Christian character. 

2. Such a provision will accommodate some 
thoughtful parents, who may naturally desire to send 
their boys to a school where their moral character is 
carefully fostered and will be likely to be developed 
so strong as to be a safeguard against youthful vices 
and corruption. 

3. The youths who have thus received a broad cul- 
ture will certainly have a grand opportunity to in- 
fluence society for good. Words and deeds of well- 
educated, earnest Christians in different spheres of 
society will help the cause very much either directly 


or indirectly. Sometimes indirect efforts produce 
more speedy results than direct. 

4. This provision will surely benefit and tone up 
the theological course, instead of causing any serious 
harm to it. 

5. We desire to lay down a broad basis for Chris- 
tian education by encouraging post-graduate studies. 

The time is just ripening for us to take this step, so 
as to attract thereto the best and most talented youths 
in the country and foster and fit them for the highest 
good and noblest purpose. We are thus compelled to 
attempt this broad sweep to reach and win thirty- 
seven million precious souls to Christ. Seeds of truth 
must be sown now. Undue delay will give a grand 
chance to unbelieving hands to make thorough mis- 
chief and render that beautiful island empire hope- 
lessly barren and fruitless. O Japan, thou the fairest 
of Asia! "If I forget thee, let my right hand forget 
her cunning and let my tongue cleave to the roof of 
my mouth." 

As I mentioned above, a movement was started at 
Kyoto last year to raise some money to found chairs 
for those special studies. But our friends are very 
few yet. The people are now pressed hard on ac- 
count of the business stagnation, and a most destruc- 
tive flood lately visited the country. So we cannot 
expect to receive from them any large donation. 
When we met a number of the eminent citizens of 
Kyoto last year for this specific purpose, we urged 
them to give us a fund before the year 1890, so that 
when the emperor gives us a constitution in the same 
year, we might found a university to commemorate the 
most extraordinary period of our political history. 
This appeal created among them a great enthusiasm. 


Some of them gave us their hearty pledge to do their 
share. So we may possibly realize some gift just suf- 
ficient to support a few native professors. But it is 
beyond our expectation to receive a fund large enough 
to sustain even a few American professors. So if a 
few professorships should be given by some American 
friends to found chairs of Political Science, History, 
Literature, Philosophy, etc., it will help the cause 
grandly. Some people in this country may hardly 
realize how dangerously our shores are visited and 
washed by the strong tide of modern European unbe- 
lief. But to a native of the country, who has been 
seriously watching and observing the course recently 
taken by the people, the present time seems grave. 
The future battle in Japan may not be with any for- 
eign invaders. But it will certainly be between Chris- 
tianity and unbelief. 

Shall we remain at peace and unequipped because 
God would fight for us for his kingdom's sake? 
We fear He will not help us unless we do our part. 
It is the time for us to make an extraordinary effort 
to push evangelical work as well as Christian educa- 
tion in Japan in order to save her from corruption 
and unbelief. The American Board has done for us 
in the educational line as much as it can wisely do. 
Yet there remains much to be done in order to carry 
out our work more efficiently. The Lord's army 
must not be hampered there while the battle is fairly 
commencing. Strong means must be provided there 
in order to furnish to the field strong men from time 
to time. 

Now who will step forth in this grand republic of 
America to render us timely help to save us from this 
impending national calamity? Here may be some 


friends seriously considering how their property might 
be best disposed of for benefiting poor humanity. 
With such we would earnestly plead and loudly cry, 
"Kemember us." Would that God might touch the 
hearts of some individuals to give us a portion of their 
blessings, and establish chairs for advanced Christian 
education there as a perpetual monument of peace 
between the United States of America and Japan, 
through which the millions of our people and their 
posterity might be blessed. 

Mr. Neesima's visit to America did not relieve him 
from the cares and anxieties inseparable from his posi- 
tion. The outlook in Japan was broadening beyond 
expectation, and with greater opportunities came the 
ambition to profit by them. The necessity for higher 
standards of education in the Doshisha, for a native 
Christian press, for all that machinery, in short, which, 
if secondary to direct preaching, becomes more and 
more indispensable as such preaching is successful, 
was keenly felt by the young graduates of the Doshi- 
sha. With all these needs Mr. Neesima was in full 
sympathy, but he was in a far better position than his 
native associates to estimate the difficulty of obtaining 
financial aid for enterprises which, however important 
in themselves, were not the first care of the Board of 
Missions. Its treasury was inadequate to meet the 
wants of the world. Pressing . demands upon that 
treasury did not come from Japan alone, and the ap- 
portionment of its resources necessarily involved dis- 
appointment to young and earnest workers in special 
fields. A plan for the foundation of a medical school, 
to which Mr. Neesima alludes in the foregoing papers, 
was being vigorously pushed; urgent calls for aid 


were received in behalf of a religious paper recently 
established in Tokyo; efforts were made to secure 
funds which should enable certain of the native teach- 
ers in the Doshisha to fit themselves for the better dis- 
charge of their duties by courses of study in America ; 
the occupation of Sendai and other centres was 
pressed upon the attention of the Board; and in all 
these plans, as in that of placing the Doshisha upon 
a university basis, Mr. Neesima was looked to as the 
main channel of communication between Japan and 
the sources of supply. He was constantly working 
for all these interests, by written appeals to the Board, 
and by conversations with its secretaries and mem- 
bers of the Prudential Committee, as also with others 
interested in philanthropic enterprises; but his ef- 
forts were not always appreciated by his zealous asso- 
ciates, and he received many letters whose criticism 
tried his patience. Of one of these, from a native 
pastor, he writes, December 15, 1884 : 

"Our young men are too zealous for the cause, and 
are apt to be impetuous sometimes. They see the 
machinery absolutely necessary for the present stage of 
the work. If there be the slightest friction I know 
they will rise up instantly to lubricate, and move on 
again. If anything stands in the way they will at- 
tempt somehow to clear the obstacle. In this respect 
they possess a revolutionary character. For the com- 
mon cause they are perfectly independent and frank 
to criticise. What I wish for them is more patience 
and grace. They are splendid fellows and will grow 
wiser by and by. I have been through such a hot fire 
these past two years that I am not afraid of them at 
all. I love them, can bear with them, and forgive 
them. But what I feel anxious about is that they 


may assume an unpleasant attitude towards your 
Board, not because they are ungrateful to you, but are 
so zealous for the grand cause of our common Master." 

Of another letter from one of the Mission, relative 
to a serious misunderstanding of his position and ac- 
tion with respect to an important matter then before 
the Board, he wrote to Dr. Davis : 

"It is the most insulting letter I ever received in 
my life. I am sorry to say it is thrown into the 
waste basket. When I read it I said within myself, 
'What! have I lost a sense of honor?' But I knelt 
right down for God's grace to preserve me in his 
hand. I am all right now. Please do not mention 
it to any one." 

After explaining his action he continues : 

"My aim was to reconcile two parties. However, 
I believe my attempt was terribly misunderstood in 
Kyoto. Then I said calmly and sorrowfully, I sup- 
posed our good brethren had more confidence in me. 
Have I acted as their traitor? God forbid that I 
should ever betray our dear brethren. How sad and 
discouraged I was then I cannot describe. My only 
comfort was that the matter could be explained after- 
wards. I believe I am blamable for my writing too 
impetuous letters to you. I was too anxious to rec- 
oncile two parties too soon. It is a humiliation to me 
that I have made numerous mistakes. It is better for 
a sick man to hold his tongue. Allow me to assure 
you I shall ever abide faithful to your mission." 

It soon became apparent that Mr. Neesima could 
not obtain the rest he came to seek unless he was com- 
pletely withdrawn from all that tempted to activity. 
Accordingly in December, 1884, he started with Dr. 
Clark for Clifton Springs, New York, where he re- 


mained three months at the Sanitarium. He at- 
tempted at first to give up thinking of Japan ; and de- 
voted himself to study. Le Conte's "Geology" and 
Newcomb's "Astronomy " were among the books read 
during this winter. But in his journal he frequently 
exclaims, "Of what use is it to try not to think of 
my dear Japan! " 

Difficulties of every kind were referred to him for 
solution, and he seems to have come to the conclusion 
that he could not escape the responsibilities of his 
position even on the plea of ill-health. His journal 
of March 10 contains the entry : 

"A broken cup ! Though thou regainest thy shape 
by being put together, thou art no more fit for thy 
Master's use. Thou art now merely a vessel existing 
in thy Master's house. However, thou mayest be a 
warning example to others, that they may never fol- 
low thy footsteps. So being, thou canst still do thy 
duty. Be thou dutiful still." 

Somewhat better in health, and greatly cheered by 
the news of the appropriation of 150,000 to meet spe- 
cial requests received from the Japan mission, he left 
Clifton Springs in March, 1885, and passed the fol- 
lowing three months in visiting his friends in Boston, 
Amherst, New Haven, Andover, New York, Brooklyn, 
Philadelphia, and Washington. At Andover he ex- 
cited a very deep interest in Japan, an interest which 
resulted in the formation of a Missionary Circle, 
and twelve members of the seminary pledged them- 
selves to that field of labor if the way was opened to 
their entrance. At New Haven he arranged for the 
reception of one of his associates on the faculty of 
the Doshisha who was anxious to complete his sci- 
entific studies in America and to fit himself more 


thoroughly for his position as a teacher in the new 
scientific department. In his journal, dated New 
Haven, he writes : 

" Will they be tired of this poor begging Japanese ? 
I may die as an unceasing beggar for Japan. It is 
the whole burden of my soul." 

In Brooklyn and New York he had long conversa- 
tions with Drs. Storrs, Taylor, Behrends, and others, 
and raised considerable sums for the library and the 
purchase of scientific apparatus. At Washington he 
devotes twenty pages of his journal to conversations 
with Professor Baird and other officers of the Smith- 
sonian Institution relative to physical training in the 
Doshisha, the fisheries of Japan, and other scientific 
matters. At Baltimore he was the guest of President 
Gilman of the Johns Hopkins University. 

While at the home of Mrs. Walter Baker of Dor- 
chester, where he enjoyed a month of rest and quiet, 
he received the news of the baptism of Mr. Yama- 
moto, his wife's brother. "This," he says, "is start- 
ling news. How thankful I am I can hardly express. 
It will have a great effect among the influential citi- 
zens of Kyoto." 

The summer months of 1885, Mr. Neesima spent at 
West Gouldsborough, Maine, on the north shore of 
Frenchman's Bay. Mrs. Hardy had placed at his 
disposal a large and pleasant farmhouse which she had 
purchased as a retreat from the busier life of Mt. De- 
sert, and here Mr. Neesima found the rest and peace 
he so much needed. The house stood alone in a field 
sloping to the inlet. From its door one looked out 
over the islands of the harbor upon the shining waters 
of the bay and the distant summits of the mountains. 
These were days of restfulness, broken only by the 


arrival of the yacht from the opposite shore bringing 
provisions, letters, or, best of all, the friends he loved. 
Yet even here was opportunity, however humble. 
July 28th he writes to those across the bay : 

" The air is sweet and refreshing, particularly in the 
morning. The calm water of the bay, the sweet and 
melodious songs of some wild birds, seem to me most 
wonderfully soothing and fascinating. Everything 
tells me here, as Mr. Hardy says, ' peace ! peace ! ' 
I watch the white sails of the lanthe as she moves 
slowly out from the harbor. She lingers within my 
sight as if Gouldsborough could not spare her, and 
when she returns, first a speck in the distance, she 
does not fly fast enough to receive my welcome. 

" I went to church here last Sunday. After the ser- 
vice I asked for the Sunday-school. To my surprise 
the reply was negative. I thought it too strange and 
too bad that these young folks should grow up here 
without it. A thought came to me at once, why can- 
not we start a Sunday-school here? I proposed to a 
lady here that we should offer ourselves as teachers. 
I thought I would not show forth myself as the origi- 
nator of the idea, and tried to put the preacher for- 
ward to execute it. He was most too glad to do so. 
I took the responsibility of getting the Sabbath-school 
papers for them, because I have no least doubt you 
will take a share in the work and get others interested 
in it." 

In his subsequent letters from Japan, when bur- 
dened with many cares, and feeling the hand of death 
not far from him, Mr. Neesima asks again and again, 
"How is my Sunday-school getting along?" 



DURING the last ten months of his stay in America 
Mr. Neesima was busy in presenting his plans for the 
Doshisha to the churches. He sailed from San Fran- 
cisco in November, arriving at Yokohama December 
12, 1885. On reaching the railway station at Kyoto 
he found over five hundred friends, students, teach- 
ers, relatives, and prominent citizens of the city, 
assembled there to greet him. On the following day 
the tenth anniversary of the foundation of the Doshi- 
sha was celebrated, and Mr. Neesima laid the corner- 
stones of two new buildings. As one reads his account 
of this joyful home-coming, and sees him alighting 
from the train in this once secluded and holy city of 
the empire to receive the welcome of so many friends, 
one remembers the poor boy who, twenty years before, 
in opposition to those claims of filial duty so strong to 
Japanese hearts, stole away by night from a remote 
seaport in the north, a lonely exile under penalty of 
death. December 23d he wrote to Mrs. Hardy : 

" How happy I was then to be received by so many 
greetings I cannot express. At home I found my 
aged parents impatiently waiting for me. My wife had 
prepared a regular Japanese supper, and we sat on 
our heels in the Japanese fashion. It was a happy 
day with us indeed. When I attempted to translate 
your kind letters to my wife and parents I was obliged 


to pause many times before I could read your most 
tender and motherly words. My profound affection 
for you is not to be diminished by these thousands of 
miles which I have traversed. All my past with you 
is a real and substantial present, so sweet to look back 
and reflect upon. I believe I am not dreaming, but 
thinking upon a reality love begotten by love. 
My heart does not permit me to write upon this sub- 
ject. It begins to throb and beat fast as soon as I 
attempt to do so. Many, many thanks for all you 
have done for me." 

The anniversary exercises above referred to had 
been postponed a few days, and were held immedi- 
ately after Mr. Neesima's arrival. The corner-stones 
of the new buildings one a large chapel, the other 
a library, museum, and laboratory were laid in the 
morning. In the afternoon the anniversary exercises 
took place in the gymnasium, the largest room at that 
time in any of the school buildings. It was beautifully 
decorated with evergreens and chrysanthemums. His 
Excellency the Governor of the Kyoto Fu was present, 
and the large room was crowded with students, grad- 
uates, and friends of the school. The historical ad- 
dress was made by Dr. Davis. In the evening the 
grounds were brilliantly illuminated by colored lan- 
terns, and a meeting of welcome to Mr. Neesima was 
held, when addresses were delivered by representa- 
tives of the students, the faculty, and the Kyoto 
churches. An alumni association was organized the 
next day. The school was then in a flourishing condi- 
tion, one hundred and twenty applicants for admis- 
sion having presented themselves at the opening of 
the year, of whom eighty passed the examinations. 
The local interest in the establishment of additional 


departments, in the raising of the standards of in- 
struction and the increase of material outfit was 
thoroughly aroused, and Mr. Neesima began at once 
to prosecute his plans with vigor. 

He had been the recognized head of the school from 
its foundation ; but, while accepting the responsibili 
ties of his office as president, had always been reluc- 
tant to assume its rights and privileges, and could 
hardly be prevailed upon to occupy the president's 
chair on the chapel platform. In one of his letters he 
says : " Since I returned here I have found something 
hard to bear. The faculty call me president of the 
institution. I wish I could get rid of this name. It 
may be an honorable title to somebody, but I feel I 
am utterly unworthy to be called so." 

Two years later, on learning that the honorary de- 
gree of doctor of laws had been conferred on him by 
Amherst College, he writes : 

" Some one told me of this while I was at Osaka. 
I said it must be a mistake. I could not believe in 
such a report. When I came to the seashore, where 
my wife was staying, I found there an official letter 
from the college. Then I began to understand it was 
a true fact. I was quite hesitating whether I could 
accept it or not. What shall I do with it ? I felt I was 
utterly unworthy of it, and wrote to several friends 
asking their opinion. I was then thinking to decline 
it, but they advised me to accept it by all means. So 
I have decided to do so with a most grateful heart. 
I cannot discover any tact, power, or ability in me to 
come through the path of these last twenty years. 
When I think of it I am utterly overwhelmed, and at 
the same time I am encouraged to stand and face the 


In the spring of 1887 Mr. Neesima went to Tokyo 
to secure the exemption of the Doshisha from the 
conscription law. Under the provisions of this law 
all students except those connected with the govern- 
ment schools were liable to military service, and many 
had left the Doshisha in order to escape the draft,, 
The law was subsequently modified so as to include 
among the exempted schools such as should fulfill cer- 
tain prescribed conditions. To meet these conditions 
an additional endowment fund of $50,000 was neces- 
sary. By a vote of the Prudential Committee, May 
17, 1887, an income of not less than $2,500 per an- 
num, the interest on the above sum, was assured to 
the Doshisha. Mr. Neesima received the news of the 
vote, together with that of Mr. Hardy's last illness, 
at Sapporo, the new capital of Yezo, whither he had 
gone in accordance with a resolution of the Kyoto 
mission relieving him from his duties and advising 
rest. From Sapporo he writes to Mrs. Hardy : 

" July 30, 1887. Mr. Hardy's letter informing me 
of the action of the Prudential Committee was re- 
ceived here with a grateful heart. Alas ! the intoxi- 
cation of this joy was soon dampened by the telegram 
telling me of his serious illness. I had some fear of 
it since receiving your last favor. How greatly I am 
troubled I can scarcely state here. I wish we could 
have some sort of medium to convey our messages 
every hour. Oh, how anxiously I feel about him. 
He has sown with us, and I earnestly wish he could 
reap much more fruit here in Japan with us before he 
departs in peace. Besides, I do own a real affection 
for him, and think I love both of you more than my 
own parents. I am begotten of you by your love. 
Pure love kindles love of the same kind. Noble 


affection binds us much firmer than some natural ties. 
Here I am, far away from you. I wish I could appear 
before him even in his dream." 

" August 24th. I am all confused when I attempt 
to write to you. I have many things to say to you 
concerning Mr. Hardy's departure for another world. 
But when I attempt to write, alas ! I find everything 
chaotic. I sit by my table, I hold my pen, but I 
can do nothing further. Of course I know that our 
Heavenly Father wished him to come to the blissful 
heaven. I know most too well we must submit all 
our affairs to his hand. I know also Mr. Hardy may 
be far better off than in this troublesome world. But 
I miss him very much. I feel quite lonely. I feel 
my real father is gone ; yea, he has been to me more 
than my father. I believe that he knew me more than 
all my Japanese friends here. I have lost the friend 
of Japan. My heart is darkened like the total eclipse 
so recently happened here. Cheerfulness and bright- 
ness are suddenly disappeared. Alas ! the total dark- 
ness. The air is chilled, the temperature is fallen. 
This solar eclipse lasted only for a while, but my 
heart's eclipse may continue so long as I live. I can- 
not finish even these few lines. I am too sensitive 
just yet. Besides this sensitive feeling I have another, 
my sympathy with you. You must miss him beyond 
a measure. His cheerful voice cannot be heard any 
more. My heart aches in your behalf. However, I 
rejoice with you that when he departed from you he 
must have commanded you to trust, and rely upon an- 
other arm, ever strong and everlasting. I will try and 
write you much oftener than before, but at present I 
find it a hard work to write to you." 

" September 4th. It is quite rainy tlu> afternoon. 


I am undisturbed by any visitor ; my thought turns 
to Boston. My reflection about you and Mr. Hardy 
is taking hold of my heart very strongly. This is 
the fifth Sabbath since he left us, but with him it 
must be the continual Sabbath. We who are left 
behind weep and mourn, but he rejoices. All the 
mysteries here may be no longer any mysteries to 
him. How grand that must be ! While I am sadly 
missing him, and at the same time cheered up by the 
idea of his most holy, happy, and blessed state, I 
have a mixture of contrary feelings. We all feel we 
have lost the father of the Japan mission. Some sent 
me telegrams to console my sorrow, others wrote me 
letters to express their own. Now we have got to go 
on without his advice and support. At this critical 
hour I simply cry out, ' God help us.' I would like 
to write you some things I have observed in this 
island. At present I have no courage to do so. I 
have received your letter telling me of his most lov- 
ing memorial to me. Now I must say what a touching 
thing it is that he should remember me so far away 
as he did. I shall never, never forget it. Through 
God's help I will try to follow his example, and to 
hand over to my fellow-creatures as he has handed over 
to me. Doubtless your letter was written with many 
tears. So it is with mine. My heart is still burning 
like a volcano with all sorts of plans for our work. 
But my wife is my constant guard to check me and 
take away my control. She works like a policeman to 
remove my pens and papers, and requests visitors to 
cease their conversation. I told her that I cannot hide 
myself anywhere in Japan now, and I am thankful 
for it." 

" March 5, 1888. Our Christian work is gaining 


much ground here. At the last communion we re- 
ceived over forty new members into our chapel church, 
and we may receive about thirty more at the next 
communion. There is no least sign of excitement. 
It may be called a steady spiritual growth. Our 
weekly prayer-meetings fill the chapel. It is a grand 
sight to see five hundred young people gathered there. 
A week ago I married a warm friend of ours, the 
head of the Yokohama bank. He gave us, la,st sum- 
mer, one thousand yen for our preparatory school, and 
last week four hundred yen for the completion of a 
dormitory which is to bear his name. His young 
wife was formerly a pupil in our Kyoto Home, and 
is the eldest daughter of a wealthy merchant. The 
wedding took place in the largest hotel in the city, 
and was a grand ceremony. The wedding proces- 
sion was very gay. The bride was accompanied by 
our governor's wife and six maidens, and the bride- 
groom by the ex-lieutenant-governor of Shiga, an ad- 
joining province. Many people of rank were present, 
and the solemn ceremony of a Christian marriage 
made a deep impression." 

In April, 1888, a meeting was held in the great 
Buddhist temple of Chionin in Kyoto to consider the 
question of a university endowment. It was attended 
by the officials of the province and city, the leading 
bankers and merchants of Kyoto, and after addresses 
by the governor, mayor, Mr. Neesima, and others, a 
committee was appointed to take the matter actively 
in hand. Mr. Neesima's views as a Christian were, 
of course, well understood, and the whole aim and 
spirit of the Doshisha were known to all. Its marked 
success had stimulated the friends of education in 
other centres, and the training-school at Sendai, or- 


ganized under Mr. Neesima's supervision, grew out of 
the desire of its founder to create a second Doshisha. 
The presence of such an audience for such a purpose 
in the hall of one of the most magnificent shrines of 
Buddhism shows the change which had been wrought 
in public sentiment. The son of the governor was at 
that time a student in the Doshisha, and his two 
daughters were being educated in the Kyoto Home. 
Mr. Neesima's connection with the Iwakura Embassy 
in 1872, his efforts for the school during the early 
period of opposition, the prominent positions taken 
by its graduates in public life, had called attention to 
the work in which he was engaged. He himself had 
repeatedly declined all offers to enter the service of 
the government, but he had always cultivated his ac- 
quaintance with the influential men of his time, and 
his earnest, self-sacrificing devotion commanded their 
respect and sympathy. In July a dinner was given 
him by Count Inouye, late Minister of Foreign Af- 
fairs, in order that he might present his cause to a 
number of distinguished guests. He was then nearly 
worn out by his efforts, and fainted away while speak- 
ing. The result of this meeting was the pledge of 
about $ 30,000, as stated in the following plea for the 
university, prepared by Mr. Neesima and published 
in November in twenty of the leading newspapers of 
the empire : 

" It was long ago that I formed the intention of 
establishing a University in Japan, and for many 
years I have been earnestly laboring to accomplish 
this purpose. Now the current of public opinion has 
become so favorable to my plan that the present time 
seems to be favorable for making my purposes known 
to the public and soliciting their help in accomplish' 


ing this great enterprise. I wish therefore to explain 
what led me to undertake so great a work and what is 
the design of the proposed institution. 

"About twenty years ago, at a time when our 
country was greatly excited over the question of in- 
tercourse with foreign nations, having the desire of 
studying in western countries, I went to Hakodate ; 
and from thence, in violation of the law which for- 
bade Japanese to leave their country, I succeeded in 
getting passage on a merchant ship, and arrived in 
Boston after a year of hard life as a sailor. In Bos- 
ton, happily for my purposes, I was welcomed and 
aided by a well known American gentleman, by whose 
kindness I was enabled to study in Amherst College 
and Andover Seminary. During the more than ten 
years of my student life in America, observing the 
conditions of western civilization and having oppor- 
tunity to meet and converse with many leading men, 
I became gradually convinced that the civilization of 
the United States has sprung by gradual and constant 
development from one great source, namely, education ; 
and also I was led to reflect upon the intimate rela- 
tion between education and national development. 
Hence it came to pass that I resolved to take educa- 
tion for my life-work and to devote myself to this 

" In the 4th year of Meiji (1871), while I was study- 
ing at Andover, Mr. Tanaka, Minister of Education, 
came with the late Mr. Iwakura, Ambassador, to ob- 
serve the condition of education in western countries, 
and I received an official invitation to accompany them 
for this purpose. After visiting the famous academies 
and universities of the United States and Canada, we 
traveled in Germany, France, England, Scotland, 


Switzerland, Holland, Denmark, and Russia, and I 
had opportunity to carefully examine the state of 
education and the condition of the schools in these 
countries. The result was that I became more and 
more convinced that education is the foundation 
of western civilization, and that, in order to make our 
Japan a nation worthy to be counted among the en- 
lightened countries of the world, we must introduce 
not only the externals of modern civilization, but its 
essential spirit. Accordingly I was the more strength- 
ened in my resolution to establish a university after 
my return to my home, and thus to discharge my 
duty to my native land. 

" In the 7th of Meiji (1874), as I was about to re- 
turn to Japan, and was present at the annual meeting 
of the American Board and made a short address at 
the request of many friends, I said that my country 
was in a disorganized condition, that the people were 
wandering in search of a light which might guide 
them into the right way, and that true education was 
the only means by which the people could make pro- 
gress both in knowledge and morality. In speaking 
of this I was so much moved that I could not refrain 
from shedding tears. Taking one step more in my 
speech, I said that on returning to my native land I 
should surely devote my life to educational work, and 
begged my hearers to help me if they approved my 
purpose. No sooner had I thus spoken than a num- 
ber of ladies and gentlemen in the audience signified 
their approval of my request by contributing several 
thousand dollars on the spot. 

" In the last part of the 7th year of Meiji (1874), 
after an absence of ten years, I returned to my home, 
cherishing in my bosom this one great purpose. In 


the following January I met Mr. Kido, counselor to 
the Cabinet, and told him of my purpose, who ap- 
proved of it and gave me much aid in accomplishing 
it. I also received much aid from Mr. Tanaka, the 
Minister of Education, and from Mr. Makimura, then 
governor of the Kyoto Fu. The result was that, in 
company with Mr. Yamamoto, I opened a school in 
Kyoto on the 8th of November, 1875, which was the 
beginning of the present Doshisha College. 

" Thus the Doshisha was established ; and its pur- 
pose was, not merely to give instruction in English 
and other branches of learning, but to impart higher 
moral and spiritual principles, and to train up, not 
only men of science and learning, but men of con- 
scientiousness and sincerity. This we believe can 
never be attained by one-sided intellectual education, 
nor by Confucianism, which has lost its power to con- 
trol and regulate the mind, but only by a thorough 
education founded on the Christian principles of faith 
in God, love of truth, and benevolence to one's fel- 
low-men. That our work is founded upon these 
principles is the point in which we have differed from 
the prevailing views on education, and owing to this 
we failed to gain the sympathy of the public for a 
number of years. At that time our condition was 
very weak, with almost no friends in the whole coun- 
try, with our principles of education not only despised 
by the ignorant, but treated with contempt even by 
men of enlightenment. Nevertheless, being convinced 
of the ultimate victory of truth, helping and strength- 
ening each other, we proceeded on our way with a 
single eye to the end and with strong determination 
amid the greatest difficulties. 

" Fortunately general opinion has now changed re- 


specting religion, so that even those who do not them- 
selves believe in Christianity are ready to acknowledge 
that it contains a living power for the regeneration of 
men. Thus society has been prepared to welcome us. 
At the same time our Doshisha has come to be ap- 
preciated and respected, and people have begun to 
recognize that we are giving our students a sound 
and well balanced education both intellectually and 
morally, so that our school is one to which parents 
may send their children without hesitation. Meeting 
with such favorable reception, our school has steadily 
advanced both in number of students and in grade of 
its curriculum, and ever our friends have urged us to 
furnish higher and higher courses of study. 

"Especially in the 14th and 15th years of Meiji 
(1881 and 1882) such requests began to come in 
upon us, and we felt that we must proceed to lay the 
foundations of the future university. Yet the estab- 
lishment of a university is one of the greatest works 
that can be undertaken in this country, one in which 
we need many helpers and much money ; and what was 
our condition at that time? Having a few friends 
and helpers, we were not so entirely neglected as at 
first, but still we were in an isolated condition. What 
then could we do ? Yet never for a moment did we 
falter in working for our purpose. We sought those 
who might favor our plans and help us, and, finding 
several who gave us assurances of aid, we held several 
meetings, to which we invited the members of the 
Kyoto Fu Assembly and asked their cooperation. 
Receiving the approval of the leading members of 
the Assembly, we published a tract ' On the Estab- 
lishment of a Private University,' and set forth in 
it the purposes of the proposed institution. This may 


be called the first step in the undertaking of the work. 
Nevertheless, although many gentlemen gave assur- 
ances of help, as it was a time of business depres- 
sion nothing was accomplished towards raising money, 
and our plans seemed to come to a stop for a while. 
Also I was obliged to go to America for a time and 
to leave the work in the hands of friends during my 
absence, so that the whole amount raised until April 
of the present year was only about 10,000 yen. 

"During the present year we have especially de- 
voted ourselves to this work, and good results have 
been accomplished. In April we called together over 
six hundred of the prominent people of Kyoto and 
explained our plans to them, at which time Mr. Kita- 
gaki, the governor of the Kyoto prefecture, not only 
approved our purpose but himself made an address 
urging the people to help in the work. Since then 
several meetings have been held, and a committee is 
collecting money, and we have reason to hope that 
our confidence in the generosity and public spirit of 
the people of Kyoto will not be disappointed. 

" And I have worked in Tokyo as well as in Kyoto. 
Counts Okuma and Inouye and Viscount Aoki and 
others, to whom I have explained my plans, have ex- 
pressed their approval of them, and especially Counts 
Okuma and Inouye, after visiting the school and per- 
sonally inspecting its working, have given it their 
warm recommendation and encouraged us in our pur- 
pose of establishing higher courses of study. Besides 
these, other gentlemen and business men of Tokyo and 
Yokohama, after hearing my plans, have given the 
following sums since April of the present year : 



Count Okuma 1,000 

Count Inouye 1,000 

Viscount Aoki 500 

Mr. R. Kara 6,000 

Mr. K. Iwasaki 3,000 

Mr. K. Okura 2,000 

Mr. H. Tanaka 2,000 

Mr. Y. Shibusawa 6,000 

Mr. Y. Iwasaki 5,000 

Mr. H. Hiranuma 2,500 

Mr. K. Masuda 2,000 

Counts Ito and Katsu and Viscount Enomoto have 
also signified their approval of our work and have 
promised to aid us. In addition, some friends of mine 
in America have promised $50,000 towards the en- 
dowment of the present school, and another friend 
has recently promised 15,000 for a Science Hall. 

" In view of this, since our work has now progressed 
for twenty years or more, and has gained so much 
approval in many quarters, and since we are now be- 
ginning to meet with so much success, I think we 
must now be diligent to seek out many helpers, for 
the institution of -a university is a great undertaking 
and needs much money and help of all kinds. Such 
an opportunity as we now have, if once lost, may 
never be found again, and therefore we must not waste 
a moment. Also when we consider the present state 
of the Doshisha, we feel sure that our purpose is not 
in vain. We have increased the number of trustees 
of the Doshisha Company, perfected its constitution, 
and thus established the government of this educa- 
tional work upon a firm basis. At present we have a 
preparatory course, an English collegiate course, a 
theological course, a girls' school, and a hospital and 


nurses' school. The following table gives a few sta- 
tistics in regard to each : 

Preparatory department 
Collegiate department ) 
Theological department > 

Regular Assistant Pupils at Grad- 
teachers. teachers, present, uates. 

.... 1 13 203 108 
1T a (426 80 
' ' ' ' 17 6 1 81 57 
.... 13 2 176 21 

3 2 13 43 

34 23 899 309 

" The school has thus attained so advanced a posi- 
tion that we expect to make the course of study in the 
collegiate department equal to that of the govern- 
ment's Koto Chu Gakko (colleges) within the pres- 
ent year. We feel, therefore, that it is necessary to 
add the university course to the present school; that 
the time has come for the establishment of the uni- 
versity. Since the university is the place for thorough 
training in special studies, those who graduate from 
our collegiate department should have university 
courses open to them to carry on their studies in 
such special departments as they wish. To leave the 
collegiate department without the higher courses of 
the university is like building an arch and leaving 
out the keystone. Thus we are such that the estab- 
lishment of the university cannot be postponed. 

" We have hitherto spoken of the motives which 
have led us to undertake this great work; now we 
wish to mention the ends which we have in view. 
We do not believe that it is fitting to commit educa- 
tion entirely to the hands of government, because the 
education of our young people is our own duty, and 
we not only are able to discharge this duty ourselves, 
but can do it with more activity, thoroughness, and 
economy. In this way our Doshisha has attained its 


present prosperity, and in this way with the help 
of others we hope to enlarge it into a university. 
We think it not well to rely on a single university 
under government control, however high be its grade 
of culture; and we conceive that the reason which 
led the government to establish the university was 
not that they wished to take higher education entirely 
into their own hands, but that they wished to give us 
a model to follow. How long, then, shall we be con- 
tent with merely looking at and admiring the model 
without making any effort to imitate it? We, of 
course, see the advantages of the Imperial Univer- 
sity, and recognize its superiority in endowment and 
equipment, but we also believe that it is our special 
work to nourish the spirit of self-reliance in our 
students' bosoms and to train up self-governing peo- 

" Education is one of the most important works of 
a country, and it gives us great sorrow to see the peo- 
ple commit it entirely to the hands of government in 
timid indolence, for such conduct clearly betrays a 
shameful spirit of dependence on the government. 

"The enlightenment of a nation is not a work 
which can be accomplished in a day. In New England 
Harvard University was founded within fifteen years 
after the Pilgrims landed on the stormy and desolate 
shore of the Atlantic ocean. Now it has 110 profes- 
sors, over 200,000 books, and nearly fifteen minion 
dollars of endowment. We have no doubt that the 
living power of such institutions is one great cause of 
the spirit of self-government which prevails so gen- 
erally among Americans. In Germany, since the 
times of Ashikaga (three hundred and fifty years 
ago), one university has been established after another 


until now there are thirty or more that are flourish- 
ing. In Italy there are seventeen. Now if we look 
at our own country and find only one university, and 
that under the control of the government, can we 
say that this is sufficient for the enlightenment of 
the people ? Must it not be said that we are greatly 
lacking in provision for the education of the people 
and in preparation for the future welfare of the coun- 
try? Such considerations as these have forced, and 
are forcing, us to attempt so great an enterprise. 

" What is the true end of education ? We under- 
stand it to be the full and symmetrical development 
of all our faculties, not a one-sided culture. How- 
ever much students may advance in the arts and 
sciences, if they are not stable and persevering in 
character, can we trust them with the future of our 
country ? If, in consequence of principles of educa- 
tion which shoot wide of the mark, our young men 
are moulded and trained in a one-sided and distorted 
manner, no one can deny that such principles are ex- 
tremely injurious to the country. Such students, in 
their search for western civilization, choose only the 
external and material elements of civilization liter- 
ature, law, political institutions, food and clothing, 
etc., and seem not to comprehend the source of civil- 
ization. Consequently, blindly groping for light and 
wandering in darkness, they are misled by selfish and 
erroneous principles in the use of their acquired 
knowledge. And though there come some who wish 
to reform these evil tendencies in education, they 
only make the evil worse by resorting to measures 
of oppression and restriction instead of training up 
noble and high-principled students whose minds are 
free and broad as well as disciplined, and who govern 


themselves and follow the right way with self-deter- 
mining conviction. We would hold our peace were it 
not that these thoughts make us anxious for our coun- 
try and people. 

" We think that western civilization, though many 
and various in its phenomena, is in general Christian 
civilization. The spirit of Christianity penetrates all 
things even to the bottom, so that, if we adopt only 
the material elements of civilization and leave out 
religion, it is like building up a human body of flesh 
only without blood. 

" Our young men who are studying the literature 
and science of the west are not becoming fitted to be 
the men of New Japan, but are, we regret to say, 
wandering out of the true way in consequence of their 
mistaken principles of education. Alas ! what a sad 
prospect this offers for the future of our country. 

" We sincerely confess that we are of ourselves un- 
worthy to undertake so great a work, but, with God's 
blessing and the help of our patriotic fellow-citizens, 
we will forget our own weakness and even venture 
upon this great task. 

" To express our hopes in brief, we seek to send out 
into the world not only men versed in literature and 
science, but young men of strong and noble character, 
by which they can use their learning for the good of 
their fellow-men. This, we are convinced, can never 
be accomplished by abstract, speculative teaching, nor 
by strict and complicated rules, but only by Christian 
principles the living and powerful principles of 
Christianity and therefore we adopt these princi- 
ples as the unchangeable foundation of our educa- 
tional work, and devote our energies to their realiza- 


" Notwithstanding that our work is based on these 
principles, if any one says that our purpose is the prop- 
agation of religion and the culture of Christian minis- 
ters, we must tell him that he knows us not at all, for 
we went to work with a broader purpose than what you 
ascribe to us. Our work is not for the propagation 
of a religion, but for the imparting of a living power ; 
not simply for giving culture to young men, but for 
fitting them to lead and influence others by their work 
and conduct. Therefore, by the side of the theologi- 
cal course already established, we wish to establish 
courses in politics, economics, philosophy, literature, 
law, etc., thus making a true university. If we are 
not able to establish all these courses at once, we will 
organize them one by one according to our ability 
and their relative importance. Thus it is plain that 
our university is not intended as a means of propaga- 
tion of any sect or party, either religious or political. 

" By making known our purpose to the public, and 
by gaining popular sympathy and aid, we hope ear- 
nestly to accomplish this work. Some of our gradu- 
ates will enter the political field, some may be farm- 
ers or merchants, and some may devote themselves to 
science. Though their occupations are different, it is 
our hope that they will all be true patriots, each 
doing his part towards the welfare of the country. 
Since the security of a country depends not so much 
on its possessing a few great men as upon its govern- 
ment being in the hands of intelligent and public- 
spirited people whom we may call the conscience of 
the country, the education of such people is the great 
and pressing need of Japan. Looking forward to 
the coming epoch, Meiji 23d [1890 the year fixed 
for the opening of the National Assembly], we feel 


more and more the need of such an institution as we 
are planning ; for, as constitutional government takes 
the place of the present system, and as the people 
come to share largely in political rights, the most im- 
portant need will not be perfect laws or institutions, 
but self-governing and intelligent people. 

" This being my purpose, when I consider my own 
strength I find it far short of accomplishing so great 
a work ; but I cannot be silent, the needs of our 
country and the urgency of my friends forbid me to 
decline this task. Thus being stimulated and urged 
on by the condition of the times, forgetting myself, 
I devote myself to this work, and I pray that with 
God's grace and the help of my fellow-citizens this 
university may be successfully established. Kyoto, 
November, 1888." 

Mr. Neesima's health during the summer of 1888 
was very precarious. He was warned by physicians 
in Tokyo that he had not long to live, and by their 
advice was taken to Ikao, a mountain resort, in a 
kago, being too weak to travel even by jinrikisha. 
Many causes had operated to discourage him. While 
at Andover in 1885 he had kindled a strong interest 
among the seminary students, and he had long been 
looking for the advent of several who had pledged 
their lives to the work in Japan. This movement 
had been checked by the action of the Prudential 
Committee in its refusal to appoint candidates for the 
foreign field who failed to conform to its views upon 
certain theological speculations then under discussion. 
The resignation of Mr. Hardy, chairman of the Pru- 
dential Committee, still further depressed him, and 
his death a year later was a blow from which he 
never recovered. His own father also died the same 


year. The plan proposed in 1887 for a union of the 
Congregational and Presbyterian churches of Japan 
had also greatly troubled him. He was not opposed to 
the general principle of alliance and cooperation, but 
he did not favor an organic union, and thus found 
himself at variance with many long cherished friends 
and co-workers. Under the shock of his physician's 
warning he writes Mrs. Hardy, from Tokyo, July 4, 

" Allow me to send you my compliments for this 
glorious day of your nation. I came here on the llth. 
My wife is with me. She is a sort of policeman over 
me, watching me lest I overdo. Though I am slightly 
gaming, I believe I shall never get well again. My 
doctor says my heart is enlarged and will never re- 
sume its original size, and that at any time my bod- 
ily life may soon cease. Of course I bore it rather 
bravely, but to my wife it seemed almost unbearable. 
She was warned to keep it a secret from me. But, a 
poor creature ! she could not keep her secret. I tried 
to comfort her and told her all my future expectation. 
However, I found it a hard work to quiet down my 
own sensitive feelings. Since then she stays with me 
and does not give me a chance to write much. Just 
now I sent her off for a few minutes in order to write 
this letter. Though I am absolutely prepared to re- 
sign my future into the tender hand of the Heavenly 
Father, yet when I think of you, all my past affairs, 
your motherly and unceasing love, comes at once to 
my precious memory, and I weep like a babe. I dis- 
like to pass off suddenly without a good-by to my 
dear friends. Therefore, though it may be useless to 
inform you of such a matter beforehand, I should be 
sorry to leave this world without sending you my last 


farewell, with my unspeakable thanks for all you have 
done for me. I owe you all, and have nothing to pay 
back but my thanks and daily prayers for you. If I 
fail to send you my last farewell by reason of passing 
off suddenly, as my doctor described to me, please 
regard this as my last word to you. I wish I could 
write as I feel, but I cannot express myself at all. I 
trust you can guess at it. What I cannot say I hope 
I shall say in another world. With regard to my 
tender feeling to my dear wife and aged mother you 
may sympathize with me. You know also how much I 
am interested in our Kyoto schools and the gospel work 
throughout this island empire. I am willing to leave 
all these interests behind. I am thankful for what has 
been done for my beloved country. What now shall I 
hope or expect to receive ? As you know, I have a 
desperate will and plan to make our Kyoto school a 
Christian university. For this cause I came to To- 
kyo. For this cause I became ill and fainted away. 
For this cause I am still staying here. However, I am 
very careful. I fear I cannot write you much here- 
after. If I pass off I hope you will not feel too 
sorry. I fear this may not be a very complimentary 
letter to receive on your fourth of July. But so long 
as I am prepared to resign myself to His hand I like 
to tell my sympathizing mother and ask for her prayers 
for my soul. My wife has returned and warns me to 
stop. What I write here is not revealed to her. 
Please keep this secret from other people. I am still 
hopeful to live, but am prepared to go also." 



IKAO, JOSHU, August 13, 1888. 

My friends have held a special council to see what 
they can do for my poor health. They consulted with 
Dr. Baelz of the Tokyo University, who urged me to 
come to this bathing place. Their plan is to keep me 
away from Kyoto lest I should be worried about our 
school. I am enjoying the quietness of this place. It is 
cool and pleasant, and nearly 3,000 feet above the sea, 
the road ascending gradually from Mayebashi, a rail- 
way terminus, where we have a church of two hundred 
members. I am surprised to find how fast a moun- 
tain town like this is Americanized. We can get 
good milk, meat, and tolerably good bread. I have 
hired a small cottage, although there many hotels well 
filled in the bathing season. This little district is 
honeycombed by the gospel, and is one of the 
strong proofs of my humble theory, educate the 
natives, and they will take care of themselves and 
start self-sustaining churches. I wish I could visit 
these churches. Alas ! it may be His will to keep me 
ill and teach me His way. I am trying to rest ; I 
walk little, eat slowly, talk little, read and write spar- 
ingly. I have read Victor Hugo's " Les Miserables " 
and "Ninety-three," and the Life of Dr. Franklin. His 
precepts are good, but his example might mislead 
many. I suppose you are now at Mt. Desert. If I 
might sit down on your piazza I would talk with 
you and listen to you, hear gentle sounds of the surf 
and see the lanthe in the bay. Alas ! with this pleas- 
ure, something would be missing. A year ago I re- 
ceived Mr. Sears' telegram about Mr. Hardy's death. 


What I felt then I feel now keenly and will feel it 
forever. I have pressed for you a petal of a sweet- 
smelling wild lily, a token of my profound respect. 

During the year 1889 Mr. J. N. Harris of New 
London, Conn., who had previously given $15,000 for 
the erection of a building for the scientific depart- 
ment of the Doshisha, increased his gift to $100,000. 
In acknowledging this gift in behalf of the trustees 
of the university Mr. Neesima wrote to Mr. Harris : 
" A donation like this is unknown and unprecedented 
in our country." Referring to this donation he says in 
a letter to Mrs. Hardy : 

" Our trustees recently held a meeting in Kyoto to 
talk over financial matters. The Buddhist priests are 
making an utmost effort to check our growth, and are 
bringing all sorts of bad names against me. They 
think I am the leader of the Christian movement. 
Through God's hand I am still protected ; my life is 
in his hand and I am not nervous at all. This sum 
came in just a right time to relieve me from an in- 
tense anxiety. When I left Boston in 1874 I bought 
a single mattress, supposing that I might be obliged 
to live a single life and even be killed for His name's 
sake. You may laugh at me for my thought when I 
bought that mattress with such a martyr-like spirit. 
During this pioneer period the Lord has blessed this 
poor fellow beyond my comprehension. You know 
how ill and weak I am, unable to engage in any vigor- 
ous work. Even in this weakness He still uses me. 
This is a perfect wonder to me. I write this private 
matter to you and request you to rejoice with me." 

Mr. Neesima seemed much better during the sum- 
mer of 1889, and after having seen the foundation of 


the new science building laid, went to Tokyo in Octo- 
ber to work for the university endowment fund. 
Count Malsugata, Minister of Finance, became much 
interested in his projects, but owing to the attempt on 
the life of Count Okuma, Minister for Foreign Affairs, 
and the unsettled condition of politics, not much was 
accomplished. Mr. Neesima therefore went to Maye- 
bashi for a brief rest. Here he contracted a severe 
cold, but returned to Tokyo and resumed his work. 
A relapse followed, and in a weak condition he went 
with his clerk to Oiso, a health resort on the seashore, 
about forty miles southwest of Yokohama, where he 
died. The last letter he wrote to Mrs. Hardy was from 
Kyoto, October 5th, just before leaving for Tokyo. 

" Your favor written at West Gouldsborough was 
at hand yesterday. A precious memory is connected 
with the house where you wrote it, and whence you 
doubtless looked down from time to time on the calm 
expanse of that picturesque bay, spotted here and there 
by white sails. The memory of it is as fresh to me as 
if I saw it yesterday. It is so sad, and yet so sacred. 

" It is quite warm to-day and the doors of my study 
are wide open. As the weather is calm I could not 
help being calm also. Here I am reflecting upon the 
past, the past connected with you. My thought is 
flying far off to a distant land, a celestial spot on 
earth. It is almost immaterial to me whether it be 
on the earth or in heaven. Where my thought goes 
there is something sweet and sacred. 

" Since I had my serious heart attack I cannot engage 
in any vigorous work. But my thought is busily en- 
gaged with the idea of our future university and of 
building up Japan. The Christian work is somewhat 
neutralized now on account of the union question. 


There is also great political excitement. The people 
are earnestly discussing the revision of the treaties, 
and political parties are using this question to gain 
ascendancy. The excitement will be greater next 
year when we come to elect representatives to the 
National Assembly. It will be a great epoch in our 
political history. The world is moving in Japan, so 
we are bound to push forward our educational work, 
and to get hold of the conscience of the people. 
Alas ! why can we not make an utmost effort to take 
up Japan and humbly offer it to Christ ? 

" Some scholars in Tokyo are endeavoring to check 
the progressive party and the Christian work. I sup- 
pose they will be a power for a while. They are pos- 
itive, but narrow and exclusive. The movement is a 
semi-political one. The petty politicians wish the 
support of the Buddhist priests. The latter hope to 
maintain their position through the help of these 
narrow-minded and short-sighted politicians. Let us 
wait and see how long they will survive against the 
light of the world. At such a time we ought to make 
a union effort to keep our front strong. But the 
union attempted is the centralization of the power of 
our local churches. Our simple-minded people rather 
favor this union because it looks broad and is pre- 
sented in a tangible form. The union I would favor 
is rather spiritual. I am a lover of democracy. It is 
not an easy task to occupy the position where I am. 
When anything happens I am apt to receive the 
hardest blow. But I don't mind it at all. I have 
chosen a policy in which church autonomy is recog- 
nized and every member can have his voice in the 
management and government. If the terms of the 
union are based on this condition I have no least ob- 


jection to it ; but I confess I am careful not to rush 
forward without any conditions. I beg your pardon 
for speaking of such unpleasant affairs. But have no 
least fear. We must go through some fire in this 
world, but time will heal all petty feelings and misun- 
derstandings. Alas ! I must go back to West Goulds- 
borough to calm down my feelings. Laying aside 
such thoughts for awhile to engage in meditation on 
the past seems to me a very part of heaven. What 
will be my thought when I step forward to the future 
immaterial heaven ! Though I am often disgusted 
with this world's affairs, I am bound to live through 
and push through all I can for Christ." 

On learning of his retirement to Oiso, Mrs. Nee- 
sima became anxious and desired to join him. He> 
however, urged her to remain with his mother, then 
eighty -four years of age, reminding her that "in olden 
times the samurai did not take his wife with him into 
battle." No serious apprehensions of a fatal result 
were at first entertained, and during the first week of 
January there were signs of improvement. On New 
Year's day he wrote a short poem of which the follow- 
ing is a literal rendering : 

Seeing the old year go, 
Do not lament over the sick body ; 
For the cock's crow is the harbinger 
Of happy times at hand. 

Although inferior in ability, 

Poor in plans for the good of my generation, 

Yet still cherishing the greatest hope 

I welcome the spring. 

The first days of the new year he passed in study- 
ing the missionary problem in Japan, writing long 
letters to several of the leading native pastors and 

INN AT 01SO. 325 

workers, in which he urged the occupation of certain 
new centres. He was never a random sower of seed. 
Thoroughly conversant with the characteristics of the 
people of the various provinces, and watching carefully 
the opening of the interior to foreign influences, he 
planned his campaign like a general, marking on a 
map of the five provinces the strategic lines of advance, 
and indicating by different colored inks the relative 
importance of the places he wished to have occupied. 
On January 10th he seemed as well as usual, and 
passed the evening with two of his associates on the 
Faculty in the discussion of plans for the new school 
of science. Professor Shimomura, seeing the discom- 
fort of his life in a Japanese inn, urged his return 
home, but he characteristically replied : " I have here 
a debt of $20,000, and cannot leave until it is paid." 
On the following day he had an attack of intestinal 
catarrh, which rapidly developed into peritonitis, and 
on the 17th physicians were summoned from Tokyo 
and Kyoto. To the suggestion that Mrs. Neesima 
should be sent for he replied: "No, wait a little." 
His disease, however, made rapid progress, and on 
the 19th a telegram was sent to his wife, who, with 
other friends from Kyoto and Tokyo, hurried to his 
bedside. On the 21st, referring to friends expected 
from Kyoto, he said to Mrs. Neesima : " If they come, 
please encourage them and tell them not to weep for 
me, for I also am a man of feeling. I might be moved 
by their sorrow, and increase it by my own." 

The Japanese inn where he was lodging being with- 
out modern conveniences, a mattress and bedclothes 
were procured ; but to these slight provisions for his 
ease he objected, saying he was not worthy to die so 
comfortably. His pain was at times severe, but his 


mind remained clear to the end. On January 22d, 
he was told that he could not live, and was asked if 
he had any directions to give. He replied: "Not to- 
day; let me rest." The next morning he sent for the 
maps which he had been studying, and with these 
spread before him he explained his plans for the ex- 
tension of the mission work, and dictated the follow- 
ing messages : 

"The object of the Doshisha is the advancement of 
Christianity, Literature, and Science, and the fur- 
therance of all education. These are to be pursued 
together as mutually helpful. The object of the edu- 
cation given by the Doshisha is not Theology, Liter- 
ature, or Science, hi themselves; but that through 
these, men of great and living power may be trained 
up for the service of true freedom and their country. 

"The trustees should deal wisely and kindly with 
the students. The strong and impetuous should not 
be harshly dealt with, but according to their nature, 
so as to develop them into strong and useful men. 

"As the school grows larger there is danger that it 
will become more and more mechanical. Let this be 
carefully guarded against. 

"Every care must be taken to unite the foreign and 
Japanese teachers together in love, that they may 
work without friction. I have many times stood be- 
tween the two and have had much trouble. In the 
future I ask the trustees to do as I have done. 

"In my whole life I have not desired to make an 
enemy, and I look upon no one with hatred. If, how- 
ever, you find any one who feels unfriendly towards 
me, please ask his forgiveness. I find no fault with 
heaven, and bear no malice towards my fellow- men. 

"The results which have been accomplished are not 

DEATH. 327 

due to my labors, but to yours ; for all I have been 
able to do has been done only through your earnest 
cooperation. I do not regard it as my work at all, 
and I can only thank those who have so zealously 
labored with me. 

"My feeling for the Doshisha is expressed in this 
poem : 

" When the cherry blossoms open on Mt. Yoshino, 
Morning and evening I am anxious about the fleecy clouds on its 

To Mrs. Hardy: "I am going away. A thousand 
thanks for your love and kindness to me during the 
many years of the past. I cannot write myself. I 
leave this world with a heart full of gratitude for all 
you have done for my happiness." 

To Dr. Clark : " I want to thank you most sincerely 
for your confidence in me and in all I have under- 
taken. I have been able to do so little, owing to my 
feeble health." 

Among his last words to Mrs. Neesima were these : 
"Do not erect a monument after my death. It is 
sufficient to have a wooden post stating on it, 'The 
grave of Joseph Neesima. ' ' 

At two P. M. on January 23d seeing the end near, 
Mr. Kanamori, subsequently acting president and 
pastor of the College Church, said to him: "Teacher, 
please go in peace. We will do our best to carry on 
your work." In great pain, Mr. Neesima raised his 
left hand with a smile, saying: "Sufficient, suffi- 
cient," and at twenty minutes past four, with the 
words, "Peace, Joy, Heaven," on his lips, entered 
into rest. 

Less than a month before, in a mountain village of 
the provinces, a band of children were going about the 


streets, their cheeks rosy with the cold. To a traveler 
who asked what they were doing they answered with 
sweet smiles, " We are paying Christmas visits to our 
friends and relatives, gathering presents; and when 
Mr. Neesima conies we shall give them to him for the 
university." Dearly beloved children ! He for whom 
you so eagerly waited will come no more. 

On January 24th the body was taken to Kyoto for 
burial. The train did not arrive until nearly mid- 
night, but a thousand persons, including over six hun- 
dred students, were waiting at the station. On re- 
ceipt of the news that Mr. Neesima was dangerously 
ill, the students had been with difficulty restrained 
from proceeding to his bedside in a body, and the 
earnest appeals made in the prayer-meetings held for 
several days before his death testified to the strong 
affection between the teacher and his pupils. The 
night was stormy and the streets were deep in mud 
and half -melted snow, but they allowed no one else 
to touch the bier, carrying it themselves by relays, 
changed at every block, the three miles which separated 
the house from the station, so eager were all to share 
in this sacred service. On Sunday, the 26th, memo- 
rial services were held in the chapel, that of the morn- 
ing being conducted in Japanese, and that of the 
afternoon in English. All day long hundreds filed 
by the casket to look for the last time upon the face 
of him they loved. "It touched my heart," a young 
Japanese said to me, "to see among many who came 
to take their farewell look at his face, the chief judge 
of the Kyoto court, a pleasant gentleman, always 
ready to say something amusing. He entered the 
house very softly, and before passing into the room 
where the casket was, took off his outer garment, so 


that I saw he wore his ceremonial dress. He came in 
very gently and made a most profound bow ; then, as 
if spaking to a live person, he said: 'Mr. Neesima, 
while you were living I was much indebted to you. I 
am sorry I have not accomplished more. In the fu- 
ture I will try to do better;' and, shedding tears like 
a child, he left the room. The next day, as the coffin 
was being borne away, I heard him say, 'The Marquis 

and Mr. were carried to their graves by 

the public undertaker; but Mr. Neesima is taken 
thither on the shoulders of those who will do great 
honor to their country. ' ' The two persons referred 
to were the late prime minister and the wealthiest 
merchant of Tokyo. 

The funeral services took place on Monday, Janu- 
ary 27th, in the presence of the school, graduates from 
all parts of the empire, the provincial and city author- 
ities, and representatives of the foreign missions. A 
large tent had been erected in the college grounds, as 
the chapel could not accommodate the assembled 
crowd, which numbered over four thousand. The 
walk leading from the gate to the chapel was lined by 
fifty of those immense .bouquets of flowers and ever- 
green of which the Japanese are so lavish on ceremo- 
nial occasions. The bier was hidden in flowers. A 
brief sermon was preached by Mr. Kosaki, Mr. Nee- 
sima' s successor, from the text: "Except a corn of 
wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone; 
but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." The pro- 
cession, a mile and a half in length, was formed in a 
heavy rain, the students again acting as bearers. 
They had from the first insisted upon doing everything 
possible with their own hands, and had themselves pre- 
pared the grave. Japan is essentially a land of con- 


trasts, and as the procession, with its flowers and ban- 
ners, files through the beautiful grove of the Buddhist 
temple on the slopes of San Jo, where lies the body of 
Mr. Neesima's father, but where burial was refused 
the son because he was "the very head of Christianity 
in Japan," one is astonished to see in its ranks a dele- 
gation of priests, bearing a banner with the inscrip- 
tion, "From the Buddhists of Osaka." Among other 
banners was one from Tokyo, with the device, " Free 
education, self-governing churches; these, keeping 
equal step, will bring this nation to honor," one of 
Mr. Neesima's last utterances. 

No private citizen has ever died in Japan whose 
loss was so widely and so deeply felt as that of Mr. 
Neesima. "Who is this man," exclaimed a native of 
Oiso, "whose name I have never heard, with whom 
the rich and the great not only hold communication, 
but for whom, in his extremity, they also sorrow?" 
His death was deplored by the press throughout the 
country as a national loss. Hundreds of letters and 
telegrams were received from men of all ranks and 
classes, and no just estimate of the esteem and love in 
which he was held by his countrymen can be formed 
without some knowledge of the many touching tributes 
elicited by his death. For, under circumstances in 
which one of his persistent purpose and firm convic- 
tion might well have created enemies as well as op- 
ponents, he retained the respect and even won the 
affection of all. 

Count Inouye had telegraphed to Oiso, "You must 
keep him alive." Viscount Aoki wrote, "I have lost a 
great and good friend." A letter from the governor 
of Shiga contained, with its message of sympathy, the 
sum which had been promised for the university fund. 


In a letter addressed to his followers and family, a 
Buddhist priest wrote : 

" Having learned from the papers of the death of 
your honored President, Mr. J. Neesima, I lament 
exceedingly. Being in my religious belief a Buddhist, 
I always opposed him and often attacked his cause. 
Meek, noble, patient, and earnest as he was, I doubt 
not he proclaimed what he believed, and this greatly 
helped to awaken the religious thought of our people. 
When I first met him I was moved by his kindness 
and love, and in two hours felt as if we had long been 
friends. Oh! had I not believed in Buddhism, I 
would have followed him and believed in Christianity. 
And I distinctly remember saying to myself, he that 
works for religion should be like this man. I had af- 
terwards several interviews with him, and each time I 
saw him my respect for him increased. On hearing 
this sad news his gentle face rose before my eyes, his 
words of love sounded again in my ears, deepening the 
feeling of loss. From the paper I learn he was of the 
same age as myself. This and many other thoughts 
come crowding upon me unbidden. I sent you a mes- 
sage of consolation by telegraph, but wishing to ex- 
press my feelings more fully, I send you these humble 

In the "Woman's Magazine" (Tokyo) Mrs. Toyoju 
Sasaki gives the following account of an interview 
with Mr. Neesima a month before his death : 

"Mr. Joseph Neesima, the pole star of our reli- 
gion, the founder of the university in Kyoto, died Jan- 
uary 23d, in the 23d year of Meiji, at the age of 47. 
We sorrow over his death, not only on our own ac- 
count but for the education of Young Japan. He was 
overflowing with love, full of virtue and of the spirit 


of consecration. His departure on the eve of the 
completion of his great work is especially lamentable. 
His life is well known to the world, and any attempt 
to narrate it on the part of my unworthy pen would 
but mar the perfect gem. So I let that pass, wishing 
only to place before you some words of his which I 
wish thus to preserve as an incentive to my own spirit. 

"About fifteen years ago, on his return from 
America, he preached frequently in Tokyo and Yoko- 
hama, and also delivered several lectures. He deeply 
impressed all who heard him, causing them to look 
upon him as the father of our people. I was one of 
his listeners, and from that time tried to see him as 
often as I could. Gradually his name became known, 
and he recently set about his plan to establish a uni- 
versity. I rejoiced in this undertaking, and to show 
my interest in it, with other sisters gave a musical 
concert, the proceeds of which, a widow's mite, we 
forwarded to him. He sent us a letter of thanks, but 
we felt unworthy to receive even this from him. 

"Last winter he came to Tokyo. It was on the 
23d of December. I had the pleasure of having a 
long talk with him. His face was gentle, but indica- 
tive of will. Though a man of few words, yet every 
one he uttered carried incalculable weight. He re- 
ceived me as a father receives his child, with overflow- 
ing love, yet with a delicate reserve. 'Believing 
this is the best opportunity, ' he said, ' I wish to ask a 
favor of you. There is a work to which I desire you 
to give yourself, an important one at this juncture. 
Among the reasons why there are so few great men 
among us, why national morality is so low, I believe 
the greatest to be the existing inequality in the rights 
of man and woman. Therefore the first thing to im 


press upon the minds of the young girls in our classes 
is the fact that they have individual rights and duties, 
that we may thus enlist their interest in the cause of 
religion. I have seen many girls who, after four or 
five years of study at the expense of much money and 
sacrifice on the part of their parents, enter married 
life to conduct themselves as if they had had no edu- 
cation. They do nothing for society. They are un- 
der the rule of their husbands. They have no oppor- 
tunity to show their ability, but are condemned to 
things in which they have had no schooling, the 
kitchen and the care of children. This is deplorable. 
It is sad that their husbands, in the treadmill of petty 
conveniencies, do not realize it. It may be the result 
of custom, but it is a hindrance to the progress of civ- 
ilization. In matters of social reform woman's influ- 
ence is greater than man's. Her power is indeed 
great. But in our country we still find conservative 
and obstinate-minded men who cling to the old order of 
things. Looking back over my own life I find great 
troubles. A man whom I thought my sincere friend 
and to whom I yielded my secret, turned out to be my 
enemy. For what I undertook, believing it to be for 
the best, I received sneers and hatred. There are 
unspeakable troubles in our path. Equally great are 
the trials which the women of to-day must meet. To 
ask you the favor of doing for this cause may be ask- 
ing you to shorten your life. But we do not live for 
selfish ends, and you and I, being the servants of 
God, do the duties appointed for us. Therefore we 
must not be surprised at the sneers and evil tongues 
of the world, for we must not forget that the greater 
the trials we endure the greater shall be our reward. 
This that I now say is foolishness in the judgment of 


the majority; for looking at the great men of the past 
I find that all had to endure the sneers and attacks of 
their contemporaries, and even to sacrifice life. No 
wonder that Christ had to suffer the Cross. He, 
therefore, who wishes to be a leader must be ready to 
sacrifice his life. 

" ' I add one thing more, and that is of the Christians 
of to-day. Being fed and clothed by God they are 
just like dead matter. This is because they do not un- 
derstand the words of God. Among many sad things 
this is the most deplorable. Even if 39,000,000 of 
people become nominally Christian, this will not suf- 
fice to purify society. This should not be lightly 
thought of.' 

"His words pierced me through. Some time had 
passed, so I rose to leave, promising to see him again 
with Miss Ushiwoda. On my going he presented me 
with his photograph, saying, 'I give you this that you 
may not forget what I have asked you to do. ' Two 
days later I visited him with Miss Ushiwoda. Though 
very busy, he received us, saying many things to us 
which I cannot speak of here, feeling my inability to 
express his thought rightly. But one sentence I shall 
not forget so long as I live. 'Let neither of you ever 
despair. Persevere. Dare to become reformers, yea, 
the renewers of this generation, and work on.' He 
seemed to be greatly moved as he uttered these words, 
and we left him in tears. His last words to us were : 
'This may be the last time I shall see you, so please 
pray for me and for the Doshisha. ' We went out of 
the door looking into his face, and sorrowfully gained 
our homes. 

"From that time we prayed daily for his recovery 
and for the university, when unexpectedly we heard the 


sad news of the 23d. We did not know even how to 
lament, it was so unexpected. It was the 23d of De- 
cember when he talked with us, but thirty days be- 
tween these two 23ds. Who could dream that those 
words were the last that he should speak to us? 
When I look back upon that day I recollect that his 
face showed traces of suffering, but he spoke to us as 
if he were unconscious of pain. Oh, his words ! Even 
now though I shut my eyes I see his face clearly , and 
I can relate but little of what he said, for my feelings 
overwhelm me.'* 

To those familiar with the national movement of the 
last thirty years in Japan Mr. Fukuzawa's name is 
well known. Like Mr. Neesima he was of the samu- 
rai class, and by his pursuit of western knowledge 
estranged his family and subjected himself to perse- 
cution and obloquy. On his return from America, 
which he visited with the first Japanese ambassador, 
he published a work entitled "The Condition of the 
Western Nations." This book was a revelation to 
Japan, and in those days of bitter feeling Mr. Fuku- 
zawa was intensely hated by the anti-foreign party. 
In 1866, he visited Europe, and on his return issued 
"The Promotion of Knowledge," whose first edition 
exceeded half a million copies. In all questions of 
religious, political, and social reform, Mr. Fukuzawa 
has been the recognized independent leader of Young 
Japan. Like Mr. Neesima, also, he has steadily re- 
fused all political preferment. As journalist, lec- 
turer, author, and especially as teacher, he has, in the 
words of a Japanese writer, "done more toward the 
growth of western civilization in Japan than any 
other man." The extract given below is from an 
article in the "Contemporary Review," of which Mr. 
Fukuzawa is editor. 


"It is reported that Mr. J. H. Neesima died of 
heart disease on the 23d inst. in a hotel at Oiso. 

"There is nothing more lamentable in human expe- 
rience than death. But the death of Mr. Neesima is 
especially to be lamented as a loss to society. If we 
examine the state of society we see men attaching too 
much weight to everything official, as if there were no 
position of fame or honor outside of the government, 
This is the natural outcome of the feudal system. To 
be a government official is to be on the road to sure 
success. And because of this belief the avenues of 
official patronage are crowded. In education and re- 
ligion, as well as in politics and commerce, every 
eye is turned towards the government as the central 
source of prosperity. The existence of this .tendency 
is disgraceful. Many things go to make up society, 
and of these government is one, but not the only one. 
In the lower stages of civilization extraordinary pow- 
ers are vested in those who govern. Such a state of 
things would, however, be a blot upon this enlight- 
ened century, and those interested in educational and 
religious movements should aim at independence both 
for themselves and these enterprises. But is this the 
fact with us to-day ? How many men are there among 
us who, free from selfish interests, seek the true inde- 
pendence of society? Now and then we hear a re- 
mark on this subject; but of what avail is it unless 
accompanied by individual illustration and example? 
It is as if a man who himself drinks to excess should 
preach temperance to others. Independent men make 
an independent society. Mr. Neesima, living in a 
corrupt age, was not corrupted by it. ^Vorking ear- 
nestly in the cause of education and religion, his pur- 
pose was ever single. He was indeed an example of 


independence. His body perished, but his name is 
beyond the reach of oblivion. Many of the coming 
generations will hear of him, to take heart and fol- 
low him. This may perchance be a comfort to his 
spirit. Learning the sad news of his death we lament 
the loss to society of a true freeman, and present 
herewith our humble condolences." 

Mr. Jichiro Tokutomi, who is preparing a life of 
Mr. Neesima, to be published in Japanese, wrote in 
the "Nation's Friend," of which he is the editor: 

"Lamartine tells us that, next to his blood, his 
tears are the most precious things a man can give. 
Individually we have lost him to whom we looked as 
to a father and teacher, for strength and light and 
love, Mr. Joseph Neesima. As a society we have 
lost the leader of the cause of moral reformation in 
Japan. We have done our best to keep back our 
tears, but in vain. It is now no time to express our 
sorrow, for it cannot to-day be contained in letters 
and words. Nor is this the tune to eulogize him, to 
analyze his character. . . . Not only brave men, but 
those soulless waves which wash the shores of Oiso 
seem to mourn for him. But his spirit of consecra- 
tion still lives, and shall not we who enjoyed his per- 
sonal teaching take courage and work on after him in 
this spirit? An elaborate eulogy, a magnificent fu- 
neral, a splendid monument, these would not please 
him. Far better is it for us to do our daily duty, to 
help forward little by little with our whole heart and 
life the moral regeneration of society, that our land 
may be the home of men and women loving liberty, 
truth, charity, and God. This, indeed, would be 
pleasing to him, and let him who admires his charac- 
ter and deplores his death think of these things. You, 


preachers, make your church a self-supporting one. 
You, teachers, make your schools training places of 
character. You, students, seek for the spirit and 
energy of those who, loving liberty, can contribute to 
their country's welfare. You, editors, proclaim the 
truth fearlessly, to your enemies as to your friends. 
And you, all men, with all your soul and strength love 
God, truth, each other." 

On February 21, 1890, a large audience gathered 
at Koseikan, where the great public meetings of To- 
kyo are held, in commemoration of Mr. Neesima. 
The following is an extract from the address delivered 
by Mr. Hiroyuki Kato, President of the Tokyo Uni- 
versity : 

" You have assembled to-day to pay a tribute to the 
memory of Mr. Neesima. I have been requested to 
be present and to say something. I declined at first, 
for I never even met Mr. Neesima and have had no 
relations whatever with him. I am not a believer in 
Jesus. Those who have already addressed you are 
all, I believe, his followers. I alone am not a Chris- 
tian. Neither am I a Buddhist. I am a man of no 
religion. . . . Yet, being urged to speak, I would 
like to make a simple statement. From what I have 
heard of Mr. Neesima I know very well what kind of 
a man he was, one greatly to be honored and re- 
spected. All who have spoken unite in ascribing to 
him an invincible purpose. It is this unconquerable 
spirit of his which I honor. I do not praise him 
because he was a Christian. I care not whether he 
believed in Jesus or not. I praise him for that stead- 
fast spirit, so essential in every sphere, of religion, 
learning, politics, or trade. I believe this spirit a 
great necessity in this country, although it is of course 


everywhere important. We are a clever people. 
Western nations commend us in this respect, and they 
are doubtless right. Within twenty or thirty years 
we have, in virtue of this quality of smartness, appro- 
priated much from the west. It is a good thing to 
be clever, but to be clever only is to lack strength. 
Cleverness and steadfastness of purpose rarely go 
hand in hand. The former is apt to taper away into 
shallowness and fickleness, and the fickle, shallow 
mind can rarely carry through to its end any great 
undertaking. While there are undoubted exceptions, 
yet I think this is our weakness, that we have not the 
endurance, the indefatigable spirit, of the men of 
the west. In the case of Mr. Neesima, however, 
from the very first, when he decided to go to Amer- 
ica, to the close of his life, this invincible spirit was 
conspicuous. Such success as he attained cannot be 
brought about by mere cleverness. 

" We are praised for the enormous progress we have 
made during the last thirty years. Many who, not 
long since, despised foreigners as barbarians, now 
almost worship them. From regarding them as beasts 
of the field they have come to consider them divine. 
This transformation has been wrought by the genius 
of cleverness, and it is well that it is so ; but a more 
steadfast spirit would have brought about the change 
more gradually. . . . Foreigners criticise us for our 
mobility, and in itself mobility leads to no good re- 
sults. . . . Without other qualities we cannot com- 
pete successfully with the west. Even if in actual 
hand to hand conflict we should conquer, in the com- 
petitions of peace we would be worsted. For the 
west is not only clever, it is strong. ... I do not say 
that we are altogether destitute of this element of 


strength, for if this were so the future would be hope- 
less. But I do say that for the young, Mr. Neesima 
is in this respect a great example. Not only those 
who follow him in his religious faith, but all, mer- 
chants, statesmen, scholars, should strive to acquire 
his spirit. It is well to understand in this age of the 
survival of the fittest the necessity for this capacity 
to endure, and I earnestly desire that more men of his 
temper may be raised up among us. 

"In this audience there are Confucianists and Bud- 
dhists as well as Christians ; but I think the latter are 
in the majority, and I would therefore take this op- 
portunity to make another suggestion in respect to 
which also Mr. Neesima is an example. ... A be- 
lief in Christianity seems to weaken patriotism and 
loyalty to the emperor (some applause, with cries of 
'No, no,' from the audience). This is the opinion of 
some, and I think it is confirmed by the conduct of 
some Christians. I hear a great many 'Noes,' and I 
am glad if this charge is not true. There is no rea- 
son why belief in Christianity should decrease loyalty 
to country, but as Christianity is of foreign origin 
men of other faiths naturally bring this charge even if 
it be only in defense of their own creeds. During the 
Tokugawa dynasty, when Confucianism was in its 
prime, a great scholar asked his disciples what they 
would do if Confucius and Mencius should lead a hos- 
tile army into Japan, and they made no answer; fail- 
ing to perceive the simple truth that whether it be 
Confucius or Jesus who comes to invade the empire, 
it is our duty to defend it. ... Whether there be 
any such feeling to-day or not, Christians will be open 
to this accusation and should be careful to give their 
opponents no ground for attack at this point. No- 


thing of this sort can be charged to Mr. Neesima, and 
therefore I have not hesitated to speak of it and to 
commend him in this respect also as one to be honored 
and imitated." 

At the same meeting, Mr. Takegoshi, editor of 
"The Christian," said:- 

" In this large audience of the aged as well as the 
young, of men and women, sitting shoulder to shoul- 
der, there are doubtless atheists as well as Christians, 
theists, Buddhists, ' and materialists, and certainly 
many who never knew Mr. Neesima. Why have so 
many unacquainted with him assembled here with 
those who knew him well? To honor his memory. 
And how shall we do this ? Shall we honor him as 
president of the Doshisha? The Doshisha University 
is so firmly established that we need not grieve on its 
account. Shall we honor him then as a Christian? 
But this atheist, this materialist, and yonder Bud- 
dhist, how can they honor him for this reason? Why, 
then, are they here? This great assembly has gath- 
ered, I think, to commemorate Mr. Neesima as one 
of the great men of this century whose extraordinary 
character is the common possession of the people. It 
is, therefore, more fitting to speak of him on this oc- 
casion as a hero than to relate the history of his work 
or to tell the story of his faith. And there arises in 
our mind first the question, What is a hero? Man is 
a being who worships heroes. The universe is the 
temple of hero-worship. The history of the thousands 
of years since man first inhabited the world is the his- 
tory of this worship. 

"Carlyle asserts that the worship of a false hero is 
the evidence of weakness, and that the homage paid 
the true hero indicates a great people. Yet even 


great nations often bow down to the false and fail to 
notice the real hero who lives and dies, in their midst. 
It is a great and glorious thing for a nation to recog- 
nize and appreciate its true heroes, and if the charac- 
ter of Mr. Neesima satisfies our ideal of greatness, his 
fame is the common glory of the nation. If a hero is 
one who can command an army, who rides among fly- 
ing bullets and glittering swords, then Mr. Neesima 
was not one. If a hero is one whose eloquence like 
a mighty wind sweeps away all opposition, or whose 
fluent speech and practical tact insure success in 
every undertaking, he was not one. But if he is the 
hero whose life is a poem, a lesson which can be sung, 
and which is capable of stirring the enthusiasm of fu- 
ture generations, then Mr. Neesima may well be given 
that title. Does any one charge me with extravagant 
praise? I can say only what I believe. Often the 
fame of great men is larger than the reality. The 
shadow is greater than the body itself. So that on 
drawing near the reality disappoints us. For this 
reason great men are often compared to a picture 
which must be observed from a certain distance. But 
this was not the case with Mr. Neesima. Great as 
was his fame, when we approach nearer, to see and 
speak with him, he wins a larger respect. Those who 
knew him personally testify to his gentleness and 
meekness. But there burned within him a fire of 
mighty power. It is a very rare thing to see these 
two traits in a single individual. A merely good man 
is often weak-minded, while ability frequently leads 
to rashness and imprudence. Gentleness and force 
coexisted in Mr. Neesima to a rare degree. 

"In one of his letters to me he wrote: 'Young 
man, fighting once, do not stop there. Fighting the 


second time, do not stop there. Do not stop even 
after fighting the third time. Your sword shattered, 
your arrows all spent, yet do not stop fighting till 
every bone is broken and every drop of blood is shed 
for the truth. Yes, if we do not fight for the truth 
is not our life a useless one? ' These words- rouse 
me to action. When I read them I sit upright. 
Within, his spirit raged like the billowy sea, but it 
flowed out calm and peaceful in a meek and gentle 
conduct. So a mighty river foaming with a power to 
move mountains while in its bed, when it reaches the 
sea spreads tranquilly over the vast surface without 
a ripple. The secret of this combination of gentle- 
ness and strength was his confidence in heaven. He 
intrusted all to God. He used to say, 'The grasses 
do not thank the spring breeze, nor the falling leaves 
complain of the autumn wind.' Autumn wind and 
spring zephyr were alike to him. He neither strove 
to win fame nor to avoid misfortune. If joy and 
pleasure came, he did not refuse them ; if they passed 
by, he let them go and did not run after them. He 
left everything to its natural course. And thus on his 
death-bed he said: 'I do not complain to heaven, nor 
find fault with any man. ' He began by trusting in 
heaven, he ended by enjoying it. What a sublime 
life. Nor did he, like an idle preacher, think lightly 
of his high calling. When he was in Kobe for his 
health, being in Osaka I went down to see him. For- 
getful of his own illness he conversed with me a long 
tune, asserting that the progress and prosperity of a 
nation at any epoch was to be measured by the num- 
ber of its great men, and went on to speak of the scar- 
city of men devoted to the cause of humanity. After 
an hour's talk he was tired out, and fearing that he 


would injure himself by so long a conversation I en- 
treated him to stop. But he would not consent, and 
went on speaking as if perfectly well. The transfor- 
mation of this self-seeking world into a realm of free- 
dom and righteousness, where the old should help the 
young and the young care for the aged, in which the 
rich and the poor should cease to antagonize each other, 
where labor should have its due reward, and peace and 
prosperity brood over the entire community, in a word 
the realization of the great possibilities of humanity, 
this was his constant preoccupation and aim. Morn- 
ing and evening, awake and dreaming, it never left his 
heart. To this end he strove to add morality to edu- 
cation. The great enterprise of his life had the same 
object in view. Riu Gen-Toku said ' Cho-un is all 
courage. ' So it has been said of Mr. Neesima, ' he 
was all fire." And this fire burned to bring forth a 
peaceful, prosperous nation. His tears, his prayers, 
his philanthropy, yea, his sickness even, were all de- 
voted to his country. His was a vocation ordained by 
Heaven, and to build up on earth the Kingdom of 
Heaven he conceived to be his highest duty. We can 
readily understand now why he believed in himself 
and assumed so great a responsibility. 

" If it be possible to combine truth and humanity, a 
bold spirit and a meek character, to show practically 
by one's conduct what Christianity is, without help 
from the dignitaries of the state or the powerful of 
this world, Mr. Neesima has done so. He was the 
Puritan of the nineteenth century. His life is like a 
poem which has the power to thrill and awaken. It is 
a precept to be followed. Such a character as his is 
indeed to be respected, and it is an honor to the nation 
to possess it. 


"Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Neesima is no more. 
As a mortal man, as the Puritan of the Orient, the 
leader of humanity, the man of independence, the 
lover of children, the teacher of the young, the friend 
of woman, the comforter of the old, he is no more. 
His body is buried, as was the body of the thief. 
But he still lives. He lives in the memory of his fel- 
low-countrymen, in the cause of truth and humanity, 
in the grateful thought of the nation. You who com- 
memorate him, endeavor to follow in his footsteps, 
consecrate your energies to make this nation strong, 
upright, and noble. This is the best way to honor his 

Few men give serious thought to the condition of 
the society of which they form a part, and of those 
who lament this condition fewer still are ready to con- 
secrate themselves to the cause of social regeneration. 
Criticism and complaint are more common than self- 
sacrificing effort for reform. But Mr. Neesima does 
not seem to have thought of self even in the early pe- 
riod of his discontent and restlessness, for the motives 
which led to his flight were distinctly patriotic. Such 
they remained throughout his life ; but, as his horizon 
widened, so also did his ambition. Beginning with 
the desire to make his country strong, he ended by 
seeking to make it Christian. When the embassy at 
Washington sought his services his allegiance had al- 
ready passed from the empire of Japan to the king- 
dom of Christ. In many of the elements which con- 
tribute to what we call success and constitute worldly 
greatness he was lacking. He was not a learned man, 
nor a profound scholar. He possessed neither great 
tact nor large executive ability. He was too modest 
and retiring to attract general attention, and as a 


public speaker was deficient in those gifts which pro- 
duce instant impressions. Nor did personal contact 
with him reveal those masterful qualities to which, as 
indicative of a profound confidence in self, success is 
often ascribed. But while he seemed to remember 
self only to become conscious of his own deficiencies, 
he had an immovable faith in a Divine Worker, and 
this faith carried him through discouragements and 
disappointments which faith in self only cannot sur- 
vive. With the modest estimate of his own powers 
which gave his presence so rare a charm, was blended 
a trust in a higher Power working through him, and 
this trust was the source of his own courage and of 
the inspiration he imparted to others. He had a large 
heart, and in such an enterprise as that in which he 
was engaged, this quality of great-heartedness is more 
effective than those more negative ones of shrewdness 
and tact. Some of the attributes which go to make 
up the brilliancy of leadership, he did not possess, but 
those which make examples and inspire imitation, sin- 
gleness of purpose, loyalty to duty, self-abnegation, 
gentle conduct, and overflowing love, were his to a 
marked degree. It is difficult to analyze that per- 
sonality which lies behind a word or an act, insig- 
nificant in themselves, to lift them out of the com- 
monplace. In his quiet personal intercourse with 
men, Mr. Neesima possessed this power of investing a 
common thing with an uncommon meaning, and by 
right of his absolute sincerity could do what a more 
prudent but less loving heart would shrink from. 

On one occasion, when a rebellious spirit calling 
for severe discipline was manifested among the stu- 
dents, he acquiesced in the infliction of the penalties 
voted by the Faculty, but, in the presence of the 


school assembled in the chapel, declared with deep 
emotion that the existence of this spirit was proof of 
a defective government, for which he was responsible, 
and for which, therefore, he also deserved punish- 
ment ; and taking a cane proceeded to strike his own 
hand with a force that brought tears and indignant 
protests from the entire school. This incident illus- 
trates forcibly how intimate is the union of love and a 
real justice. Mr. Neesima's love knew no limits. It 
is easy to love our friends, it is possible to love our 
enemies ; but it is rare to find one who loves the great 
multitude of the unknown. In a conversation with 
one whom he was urging to take up work in the prov- 
inces, he quoted the poem written by the wife of one 
of the earlier Shoguns : 

"However glad the city's spring may be, 
The thought of fading country flowers deep sadness brings to me." 

Mr. Neesima's monument is not the simple stone 
which marks the grave on the slope above Kyoto ; it 
is the university on the plain below. Every one who 
visits Japan is impressed by the results it has already 
wrought. A Russian nobleman, high in station in 
his native land, after meeting Mr. Neesima and in- 
specting the Doshisha in 1887, said: "He is one of 
the most wonderful men in some respects I have ever 
known, and this institution would be a blessing to any 
nation. There are no schools in Siberia to compare 
with it, and I wish that some of the energy and force 
and wisdom which have been displayed in its founda- 
tion might be devoted to the work of lifting up my 
countrymen who are scattered through that broad 
Asiatic empire which we possess." Yet even the uni- 
versity itself, the visible outcome of Mr. Neesima'a 


life, does not represent the sum of his activity. For 
beyond all the energy and self-sacrifice involved in its 
foundation are these personal and indirect influences 
upon men and society, which cannot be estimated, 
which cannot be adequately represented by a monu- 
ment or an inscription, and which widen "with the 
process of the suns." 


THE Doshisha School was established in 1875. The 
first class graduated from the Theological department in 
1879, and from the Collegiate department in 1880. The 
Girls' School was opened in 1877 ; the Preparatory depart- 
ment and the Doshisha Hospital and Nurses' Training 
School were opened in 1887. The Harris Science School 
was opened in September, 1890, and the trustees have 
voted to open the department of Political Science in 1891. 
The name "Meiji" University, proposed in 1884, was 
changed in 1888 to Doshisha University. The Board of 
Trustees is composed of ten Japanese, residents of Kyoto, 
Tokyo, and Osaka ; there are also three foreign associates, 
and one honorary member. The catalogue for 1890-91 
shows a Faculty of Instruction of thirty-four members, 
twenty -three of whom are Japanese, and the following 
courses of instruction : a Preparatory course of two years ; 
an Academic course of four years ; a Theological course of 
four years, candidates for which must have completed the 
Academic course or its equivalent ; a Special Theological 
course of three years, established in 1882, with provision 
for one year's preparatory study ; and a short Vernacular 
course of two years, designed for such as cannot take the 
full course, but desire to engage in evangelistic work. The 
Harris School comprises two departments, one of pure sci- 
ence (university courses), and one of applied science (tech- 
nical courses). The number of students entered in 1890 
was : 

Preparatory 76 

Collegiate 376 

Scientific 33 

Theological 86 

Total 670 


The Doshisha now comprises about twenty buildings, in- 
cluding thirteen dormitories accommodating seven hundred 
students, a gymnasium, a chapel for the Preparatory depart- 
ment, and four brick buildings, namely, a chapel with a 
seating capacity of seven hundred, a library which also 
contains six recitation rooms, a recitation hall with eight 
rooms, and the new Harris building with lecture-rooms and 

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