Samurai in New York: The First Japanese Delegation, 1860

Year: 1860

Summary: Three samurai ambassadors – Masaoki Shinmi, Norimasa Muragaki,, and Tadamasa Oguri – and approximately 74 samurai diplomats traveled to the U.S. in the spring of 1860 for the first face-to-face cultural exchange since the beginning of Japan’s 1603 sakoku (closed country) policy. The delegation was sent by the Tokugawa Shogunate to exchange instruments of ratification covered in the Treaty of Amity and Commerce between Japan and the United States (1858), an agreement that granted special economic and diplomatic privileges to the United States. After arriving in San Francisco on March 29, 1860, the members of the embassy traveled to San Francisco, Panama, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., and, finally, New York.

Source: Collection of Tom Burnett, Consulate General of Japan in New York
Added Date: 06/26/2022