Presented By Hakodate City Museum

Presented By Hakodate City Museum

Presented By Hakodate City Museum

These mineral specimens were collected by Gerard Peuillier Francois (known by the Japanese name Furie Okada, 1859-1947), the first abbot of the Tobetsu Trappist Monastery in the city of Hokuto.

The history of the Tobetsu Trappist Monastery begins in 1896, a year after Peuillier came to Japan. He was adopted by a Japanese Catholic, and renamed Furie Okada. Throughout his daily life, prayer, and work as the monastery’s abbot, he strove to become Japanese.

Peuillier was also well-versed in academic fields such as archaeology and geology, and collected around 2,000 mineral specimens from around the world, including fossils and rocks from Hokkaido. However, during the second world war, his home country ceased funding the monastery, and in dire financial straits following the war, he sold off his beloved collection.

During the Meiji period (which lasted 1868-1912), Furie imported dairy cattle from France, leading to the Trappist Butter and Trappist Cookies which are iconic souvenirs of Hakodate to this day.

Words Masaharu Taniguchi
Translation by Xene Inc.

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