It’s 150 years since this land, formally known as Ezo, was renamed Hokkaido. In a bid to promote industrial growth and military strengt...
Who is Nagayama Takeshiro?
Nagayama Takeshiro was born in Kagoshima and moved to Hokkaido when he was 34 years old. This article traces 67 years in the life of Nagayama Takeshiro, called the “Father of Colonial Soldiers.”
In November 1889, Nagayama proposed the establishment of a northern capital in Kamikawa. Even though the proposal for Kamikawa as the northern capital was not realized, the seventh division was transferred from Sapporo to Asahikawa in 1899. This must have been filled Nagayama’s heart with emotion as he leaned of the decision as division commander.
Nagayama Takeshiro and Asahikawa
The role of Nagayama Takeshiro is still deeply involved in the mentality of Asahikawa city. We thought about the temperament of the people of Asahikawa based on the words of Okamoto Tatsuya, the curator of Asahikawa City Museum and an expert in the history of the modern era.
The Nagayama district in Asahikawa City is named after Nagayama Takeshiro. Are there still historical material and stories related to Takeshiro in the district?
The Former Nagayama Takeshiro Residence
The Nagayama Takeshiro Residence, in which Nagayama Takeshiro spent his private time, reopens after refurbishment.
After refurbishment, the newly opened Former Nagayama Takeshiro Residence and Former Mitsubishi Mining Company Dormitory includes a café and can be enjoyed by many people. But what are the charms that become evident when you spend time there?
Side stories: Walking in Tonden
Nagayama Takeshiro is called the father of the Tondenhei (farmer soldier). There is a district named “Tonden.” Tonden, Kita-ku, Sapporo City. The history of the Tonden district on the lower Ishikari River basin shows another side of Sapporo.
The Tonden region of Kita-ku in northern Sapporo is full of activity, from expansion of commercial facilities to construction of public housing. It has been 130 years since the foundation of the Shinoro Tondenhei (farmer soldier) Village. This region owes its success to rice cultivation.
If you look at a topographic map of Tonden, you’ll see streetscapes surrounded by windbreak trees, and rows of sand dunes on the northern side. It was these two features on which Sapporo’s last Tonden-hei village was created. (Picture provided by Google, ZENRIN)
Big changes can be seen in the Tonden district, including large shopping malls and collections of restaurants. In this article, we look at the past to examine the future of this former rice-growing hamlet that has become a new residential area.