The Ansei Five-Power Treaties, which came into effect in July 1859, ended Japan's long
disengagement from international commercial and diplomatic networks. The treaties also
provided for the establishment of designated settlements for foreigners in the five Japanese
ports of Nagasaki, Kanagawa (Yokohama), Kobe, Niigata and Hakodate.
The foreign settlements subsequently served as springboards for the modernization of
Japan. During the first years, Nagasaki played a particularly important role in that it was the
closest port to China and a stepping stone for the introduction to Japan of everything from
second-hand steamships to bowling balls and as a gateway for coal mining, railroads,
newspaper publishing, shipbuilding and other technologies.
In the process, the Nagasaki foreign settlement developed its own unique style of
administration, architecture and economic activity and provided a venue for international
exchanges on various levels. The port also served as the setting for Madame
Chrysanthemum, the 1888 novel by French author Pierre Loti that took nineteenth-century
Europe by storm, deepened the cultural influence of "Japonisme" and paved the way for
Giacomo Puccini's famous opera Madama Butterfly.
From the outset, however, the Japanese government wanted to revise the treaties because
of their inherent inequality: foreign residents of the settlements enjoyed the privilege of
extraterritoriality (immunity from local laws) and unilateral authority over many aspects of
trade, but this was certainly not the case for Japanese visiting Europe or America.
In 1894 Japan finally succeeded in negotiating the abolition of the former treaties and
replacing them with trade pacts similar to those concluded among European countries. The
new pacts became effective five years later in July 1899, placing Japan on an equal
international footing with the Western powers.
As a result, the Nagasaki foreign settlement, like its counterparts in Kobe, Yokohama and
other ports, ceased to exist as an official entity. But the great prosperity of the port
around the turn of the century, brought on in part by the military and economic activity
related to the Sino-Japanese War, the Spanish-American War, and the Boxer Rebellion,
assured its continuation as an unofficial institution retaining its primarily foreign population,
its unique social infrastructure and its quasi-Western architectural identity.
During the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-5, Nagasaki was placed under special military
supervision because of its proximity to the theaters of war. As a result, international
shipping came to virtual standstill, and smaller ports in Kyushu such as Kuchinotsu, Moji and
Hakata took over a large share of the trade and coal supply business once monopolized by
Nagasaki. The following decades witnessed a steady decline in the number of foreign
residents, and the outbreak of World War II caused an almost complete exodus.
After World War II, the homes, offices and hotels used by the residents of the former
Nagasaki foreign settlement disappeared one after another under the wave of development
and urbanization. Now only about one-tenth of the original buildings remain and memories
have mostly faded in the old neighborhoods, but the area - and however indirectly the
foreigners who once inhabited it - continue to contribute to the economy and culture of
Nagasaki through its ongoing role as one of the city's most important tourist attractions.
2. Social Structure of the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement
(2) Consular Jails and Courts
(3) Clubs and Organizations
a) Municipal Council
b) Nagasaki Club
c) Freemasons Lodge
d) Seamen's Home
(4) Churches and Missionary Activity
(5) Foreign-run Businesses
(6) Stores and Factories
(7) Medical and Dental Treatment
(8) Foreign Language Newspapers
(9) Entertainment and Sports
a) Public Hall
b) Bowling and Tennis
c) Boat Races
(10) Hotels and Restaurants
During Japan's more than two-century long period of national isolation (1641-1859), the
Japanese people lived in a state of peace and self-sufficiency under the benevolent
dictatorship of the Tokugawa Shogun and his train of feudal lords. World news trickled into
the country via the Dutch and Chinese in Nagasaki, but the insularity of the country was
such that the Industrial Revolution, the Napoleonic Wars and other important events were
all but unknown to most of the nation. But by the 1830's the reports of international
upheaval were beginning to issue from sources alarmingly close. In 1842, the Chinese were
devastated by the British in the Opium War and forced to sign the Treaty of Nanjing, a set
of unilateral demands including the payment of a crushing indemnity, cession of the island of
Hong Kong, and the opening five coastal towns including Canton and Shanghai as trade
ports with low fixed tariffs and extraterritorial rights for foreigners.
The Dutch delivered warnings to the Tokugawa Shogunate about an impending crisis, but it
was not until July 1853, when Commodore Matthew Perry anchored a squadron of
American warships in Tokyo Bay and demanded the opening of Japan to trade and
diplomatic relations with the United States, that the Shogunate finally arose from its long
hibernation. The following month, Russian Admiral Evfimii Putiatin sailed into Nagasaki
Harbor to accomplish the same mission. Both the Americans and Russians eventually
succeeded in winning agreements from the Shogunate, setting precedents that were
followed by Britain, France and the Netherlands.
In 1858, the Shogunate signed full-fledged commercial treaties with the United States,
Russia, Britain, France and the Netherlands and opened - effective July 1, 1859 - the three
ports of Nagasaki, Yokohama and Hakodate. No warfare or outright force was involved in
the forging of these treaties, but Japan's huge military and economic disadvantage left it
little choice but to agree to the tariffs fixed by the foreign countries, to grant
extraterritorial rights to foreign residents, and to allow the construction of foreign
settlements in each treaty port. Yokohama was close to the seat of the Shogunate in Edo
(Tokyo) and would soon grow into the largest of the foreign settlements, but in 1859
Nagasaki was still the most important port because it had been Japan's only open window
during the period of national isolation and because it was close to Shanghai, the point of
departure for most of the ships making the first voyages to Japan. Soon foreigners of
various nationalities were arriving here in droves to begin the work of building communities
on the blueprints of the foreign settlements in China and to establish links with Japanese
merchants, officials and agents of feudal lords.
In Nagasaki, foreign representatives conferred with Japanese authorities and selected the
mouth of Oura Creek and its adjacent hillsides - lands belonging to the Omura feudal
domain - as the site for the foreign settlement. In 1860, workers began to fill in the mud
flats along the coast and to build the waterfront bund that imitated its counterpart in
Shanghai and would go on to serve as the facade of the foreign settlement. The two
hillsides rising away from Oura Creek were earmarked for residential districts, the one close
to the old town named Higashiyamate ("Eastern Hillside") and the other Minamiyamate ("
Southern Hillside"). During the following months, the hillsides were carved into ledges and
reinforced with stone embankment walls to make space for the construction of Western-
style houses, a network of stone-paved gutters was installed for drainage, and flagstone
paths and steps were laid to provide access to individual lots. The two-phase construction
project reached completion in early 1862, and all foreign residents of Nagasaki were ordered
to move into the new neighborhoods by April 15, 1862. Land ownership was administered by
a system of "perpetual leases." Issued in lieu of a title deed, the perpetual lease allowed
foreigners to buy, sell and own property but precluded legal possession of land. For
example, Thomas B. Glover acquired - for a yearly fee of 194 dollars - the perpetual lease
to the hillside lot of No.3 Minamiyamate, where he built his famous residence in 1863. But
the Glover family did not actually own the land until 1911 when Glover died and left the
house to his son Kuraba Tomisaburo, who was a Japanese citizen.
By the middle of the Meiji Period, the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement was home to a large
multinational community. Fine Western-style buildings of companies like Jardine Matheson
& Co., Great Northern Telegraph, and Holme Ringer & Co. cut a gracious figure on the
waterfront "bund," hotels, warehouses, merchant shops, newspaper offices and other
establishments run by foreigners formed an orderly labyrinth in the rear quarters, and
taverns and small hotels lined the banks of Oura Creek. The two hillsides, meanwhile, were
studded with gracious colonial-style villas that displayed all the features demanded by the
wealthy foreigners who inhabited them, such as high windows and doors, wood-strip floors
ready for carpets, coal-burning fireplaces, spacious gardens and wide verandas commanding
panoramic views of the harbor. The Nagasaki Foreign Settlement, in short, was like a patch
of Liverpool or Vancouver sewn onto the waterfront of a Japanese town.
2. Social Structure of the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement
The Nagasaki British Consulate was the first foreign consulate established in Japan after
the opening of this country's doors in 1859, and until its closure on the eve of World War II
it served as both the most important foreign representation in Nagasaki and the socio-
political center of the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement. The first British consul, C. Pemberton
Hodgson, arrived in Nagasaki on June 13, 1859 and, after negotiations with the Nagasaki
bugyo Okabe Suruganokami, rented a building at Myogyoji Temple and conducted consular
duties there until being replaced by George S. Morrison in August the same year. Morrison,
who had served as a diplomat in China, set out regulations for British citizens in Nagasaki
and engaged in negotiations with Japanese officials about trade guidelines and living
conditions in the settlement. He also arranged for the construction of a permanent British
consulate at No. 9 Higashiyamate. This building was sold and the consulate moved to No.6
Oura in 1886. The British consulate remained here until October 1904, when it was moved
temporarily to No. 47 Oura to allow for the construction of a new building. This building - a
gracious two-story brick and stone building with a courtyard and dormitories for both
British and Japanese employees at the rear - reached completion in 1908. The British
consulate remained in operation until 1941, when the impending outbreak of war between
Japan and Britain made conditions too dangerous for government officials to remain in
Nagasaki. After the war the building was ceded to the City of Nagasaki and was used to
house a science museum until 1996, when it was designated a national important cultural
asset and reopened as an art gallery.
The United States, France, Germany, China and Russia also dispatched consuls to Nagasaki
and established independent consulate buildings in the foreign settlement. Like the British
Consulate, these institutions served the needs of the citizens of the respective countries
residing in Nagasaki and engaged in exchanges on various levels with Japanese officials,
business representatives and citizens. Although they did not have their own consulates or
officially dispatched consuls, many other countries such as the Netherlands, Portugal,
Belgium, Italy, Spain, Austria-Hungary, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Brazil and Hawaii either
enlisted the British consul or prominent Nagasaki entrepreneurs like Frederick Ringer to
serve as acting consuls.
In this way, at its peak of activity around the turn of the 20th century, the small area of
the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement bristled with consulates of various foreign countries, like a
miniature model of the world at large.
(2) Consular Jails and Courts
One of the most important features of the foreign settlements was that the foreigners who
lived there were allowed the privilege of "extraterritoriality," that is, immunity from
Japanese laws. The rationale behind this was that Japan, as a nation only recently
inducted into the international community, was not equipped to deal with legal issues
affecting foreigners. It was also one of the main reasons for Japan's later condemnation of
the Ansei treaties as "unequal treaties" and its diplomatic efforts to abolish the settlements.
Foreigners may have enjoyed immunity from Japanese laws, but that did not mean that
they were free to commit crimes. In fact, it was the consulates of the respective countries
that served as courts for the trying of criminal and civil cases and the consul who served
as judge. Each consulate in Nagasaki also employed constables whose responsibility it was
to maintain peace and order, to arrest suspected criminals, and to confine them in the jail
built in each consulate.
After the revision of the Ansei Treaties and the official abolition of the foreign settlements
on July 17, 1899, the consular jails and courts became obsolete because foreigners now had
to answer to Japanese laws. The first arrest of a foreigner by Japanese police occurred on
July 21 - only four days after the inception of the new treaties - and the history-making
person was an American sailor, seriously the worse for drink, who damaged a Nagasaki
rickshaw, assaulted its driver when asked for compensation, and soon had the sobering
experience of being marched off to the Japanese police station.
(3) Clubs and Organizations
a) Municipal Council
Soon after the completion of the first phase of the foreign settlement construction project,
the Oura, Dejima, Umegasaki, Higashiyamate and Minimiyamate neighborhoods were divided
into lots and put up for rent, and on April 21, 1861, all the foreigners who had applied to
rent land held a meeting at Myogyoji Temple, which was still serving as a temporary British
consulate. The British consul George Morrison was appointed chairman. The main purpose
of the meeting was to select a "municipal council" to supervise the administrative affairs of
the foreign settlement. William Alt (British), John Major (British) and Franklin Field
(American) were elected to seats on the council and submitted their first report three
weeks later, calling for negotiations with the Japanese government and various measures to
improve facilities and promote business in the new settlement. In 1876 the chairman of the
Municipal Council was Thomas Glover.
The Municipal Council was later disbanded because of its redundancy with other
organizations, but it played an important role in the early years of the foreign settlement by
uniting residents of various backgrounds and nationalities and establishing the settlement as
an autonomous community.
b) Nagasaki Club
In 1861, less than two years after opening of the port, several British residents of Nagasaki
joined to create a social organization called the "Nagasaki Club" in imitation of similar men's
clubs in Calcutta, Shanghai and other British colonial enclaves. The club rules were laid out
in early 1862, and a permanent building was constructed at No. 31 Oura, the former site of
the English-language newspaper Nagasaki Shipping List and Advertiser. The first trustees
were British merchants W.J. Alt and H.M. Wright. In 1881, the club was moved to a fine two-
story building at No.10 on the Oura Bund and continued under the supervision of British
newspaper publisher Charles Sutton. Although a typical British institution, foreign residents
of various nationalities as well as visitors to Nagasaki used the club as a place to relax and
mingle with friends. The only qualification for entry seems to have been foreign nationality
and a certain financial standing. Among the facilities were a reading room, library, bar and
billiard room. Events such as dances and costume parties were held occasionally, especially
to mark holidays and the departure of important residents. It was the Nagasaki Club that
served as a model for the Nagasaki International Club formed in 1899 as a social venue for
Japanese and foreign residents of Nagasaki. The Nagasaki Club moved to No. 4
Minamiyamate in 1933 and closed permanently in 1941.
Click here for a photograph of Nagasaki Club members in 1910.
c) Masonic Lodge
The Freemasons are a fraternal order whose basic tenets are brotherly love, philanthropy
and truth. Although frequently mistaken for a religion or secret society, Freemasonry is
neither of these. It is probably better understood as a friendship organization, like the
Rotary Club or Lions Club. It does, however, have a long international history. Said to have
started in the Middle Ages as a organization of skilled stone masons involved in the
construction of the great cathedrals of Britain, the Freemasons grew into a gathering of
men interested in making regular, enjoyable contact with other men of good character and
thus reinforcing their own moral development. After the organization expanded to include
men of all occupations, the tools of the medieval stonemason - such as the rule, the
compass and the square -- became symbols for human equality, justice, and other ideals.
The Nagasaki Masonic Lodge was inaugurated at No. 50 Oura on October 5, 1885. The
founding members were all British, but during the following years, men of various
nationalities and religions became members and participated in regular meetings and social
events. The lodge moved to a new building at No. 47 Oura in June 1887. The Freemasons
contributed to the Nagasaki community until disbanding in the early Showa Period due to a
lack of members. Today, the graves of several former Freemasons can be found in Nagasaki'
s international cemeteries, and the stone gate of the former lodge is preserved in Glover
d) Seamen's Home
At the peak of its prosperity as an international port, Nagasaki saw the visits of hundreds of
foreign ships a year and welcomed countless numbers of foreign seamen ashore. Because
many of these men went on drinking and gambling sprees or visited the many brothels that
catered to them, the missionaries of the foreign settlement made efforts to establish a
facility where seamen and other travelers could rest and engage in healthier activities while
ashore. In 1879, Walter Andrews of the Anglican Episcopal Church rented a building at No.
15 Oura and established a "Reading and Coffee Room" for sailors. Andrews and his
successor A.B. Hutchinson ran this facility until June 1889, when the latter left Nagasaki to
take up missionary work in Fukuoka. In February 1896, Protestant missionaries and a group
of sailors on a visiting American navy vessel launched a fund-raising campaign that resulted
in the inauguration of the "Christian Endeavor Seamen's Home" at No.26 Oura (present-
day Umegasaki Junior High School). After about 10 years, this facility had grown to such an
extent that it had accommodations for about 90 men as well as a dining room, a large
general room and a library. One difficulty faced in the early years was the lack of a married
couple to manage the institution. Elizabeth Mills operated the home for the first two years,
but it was not until October 1897 that Mr. and Mrs. John Makins were hired as permanent
managers. Other managers who followed included Risher W. Thornberry, Mr. and Mrs. Jonus
White, Mr. and Mrs. James Hatter and Mr. and Mrs. E.A. Clark. The Seamen's Home saw
many ups and downs over the following years but managed to remain open until just prior to
the outbreak of World War II.
(4) Churches and Missionary Activity
One of the problems that arose from the opening of Japan's doors and the establishment of
foreign settlements was the fact that, while the ban on Christianity enforced by the
Tokugawa Shogunate since the early seventeenth century was still firmly in place, the
foreigners taking up residence here naturally wanted to build churches and to conduct
religious services. In view of the extraterritorial rights granted foreigners, the Shogunate
had little choice but to permit the construction of churches within the confines of the
settlements, but it strictly outlawed any attempt to win Japanese converts and only
stepped up its efforts to suppress the religion in the local community.
The first Catholic church to appear in the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement was Oura Cathedral
at No.1a Minamiyamate, a quasi-gothic structure built by Japanese carpenters under
orders from French priests of the Paris Foreign Mission Society and completed in February
1865. It was at the door of this church - only weeks later on March 17 - that a group of
peasants from Urakami village approached Fr. Bernard Petitjean and informed him that they
shared his belief in "Santa Maria." This event marked the discovery of the "underground
Christians," whose ancestors had sought refuge from persecution in remote islands and
villages in the early seventeenth century and who had kept their religion alive for two
centuries despite complete isolation from the Church. Petitjean and the other French
priests defied the law and made surreptitious visits to Urakami and other villages where
Japanese Christians were hiding. But the authorities learned of the existence of the
underground groups and in the latter part of the decade took the drastic measure of exiling
the entire population of Urakami to other parts of Japan.
In 1876, when the Vicariate Apostolic of Japan was divided into Northern and Southern
Apostolic Vicariates, Nagasaki became part of the Southern Vicariate Apostolic, which had
jurisdiction over the Kyushu, Chugoku, and Kinki regions. Ten years later, the Nagasaki
mission was staffed by 16 French priests from the Paris Foreign Mission society, including
Fr. Marco de Rotz, who was revered for his efforts to help the Catholic faithful in the poor
villages of Sotome.
Catholic nuns also played an important role in the religious life of the foreign settlement.
Answering a plea from the French missionary Bernard Petitjean for a contingent of sisters
to come and serve in Japan, Sister Mathilde and four other members of the order Soeurs
de l'Enfant Jesus moved their mission to Japan in June 1872. The first group of French
sisters arrived in Nagasaki on July 6, 1877. In 1880, they opened a school called Seishin Jo
Gakko (Sacred Heart Girls School) in Minamiyamate. By 1886, the school had been
transferred to No. 5 Oura, where it remained until 1899 when it was established in a fine
new building at No.16 Minamiyamate. This school welcomed the daughters of both foreign
and Japanese families and soon grew into a Nagasaki landmark.
The foremost Catholic school for boys in the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement was Kaisei
Gakko, founded by French Marianist brothers in 1892. The school purchased land on the
Higashiyamate hillside and in 1898 began classes in a grand four-story brick building
commanding a panoramic view over Nagasaki Harbor. A group photograph taken around the
turn of the century shows how the school accepted pupils of various nationalities, races and
religious backgrounds, just like the city in which it was located.
The Protestant denominations also established churches and schools in the Nagasaki
Foreign Settlement. The American Episcopal Church, which had a station in China, sent two
missionaries to Nagasaki prior to the official opening of the port in 1859, and one of these, C.
M. Williams, constructed Japan's first Protestant church at No.11 Higashiyamate in October
1862. After the abolition of the ban on Christianity in 1873, Henry Stout, a missionary of
the Reformed Church in America serving as an English instructor at the government school,
started bible classes for Japanese students in his home at No.14 Higashiyamate and, with
his wife Elizabeth, opened mission schools for young men and women that would grow into
Tozan Gakuin and Umegasaki Jogakko, respectively. Eliza Goodall, the widow of an Anglican
military chaplain, started classes in English and dressmaking for girls in her house at No.3
Higashiyamate and thus laid the foundation for Nagasaki Jogakko (Girls' School). The No.3
Higashiyamate lot had originally been rented by Guido Verbeck, the pioneer American
missionary and educator who worked at the government school in Nagasaki. Another
notable American missionary is John C. Davison, a member of the Methodist Episcopal
Church who came to Nagasaki in 1873, helped to establish a Protestant church at Deshima
in 1876 and arranged through the American Board of Foreign Missions for the dispatch of
ministers to found Methodist mission schools in Nagasaki. As a result of his efforts, Kwassui
Jogakko (for young women) and Chinzei Gakuin (for young men) were established on the
Higashiyamate hillside in 1879 and 1881, respectively, and went on to make important
contributions to education in Japan. The "Nagasaki Directory" and other records for the
period around 1897 show that, of the 17 lots in the Higashiyamate district, 13 were occupied
either by the Protestant mission schools named above or by the homes of missionaries and
teachers working there. It is no wonder that Higashiyamate was also known among foreign
residents and visitors as "Missionary Hill."
The Russian residents of Nagasaki joined together in 1883 to found a Russian Orthodox
Church near the Russian Consulate at No.5 Minamiyamate. Just as the consulate served
their political needs, the church served the religious needs of the Russian community of
Nagasaki until both were closed in 1932. Today, the Russian Orthodox chapel in the Russian
Cemetery at Goshinji Temple is a reminder of the religion's former presence in Nagasaki.
Although Nagasaki's early Catholic and Protestant churches have gained far more attention,
the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement was also the site of Japan's first Jewish synagogue.
Jewish people began to arrive in Nagasaki from the 1860's, most establishing hotels, bars
and stores on the back streets of the settlement. Although united by their religion, these
people hailed from various countries including Russia, Austria, Romania and Turkey, and
many arrived in Nagasaki after moving around various international ports searching for
financial security and freedom from prejudice. Their numbers increased in proportion to
Nagasaki's prosperity as a trade port, and in September 1896 they joined together to
establish the Beth Israel Synagogue at No. 11 Umegasaki. The leaders in this endeavor
were the prominent Jewish entrepreneurs Haskel Goldenberg and Sigmund Lessner. This
synagogue continued to serve the Jewish community of Nagasaki until the building and
property were sold in 1924, a point in time that coincides with the departure of the last
Nagasaki Jewish residents. Today, nothing remains of the former synagogue, but the large
number of Jewish graves in the international cemeteries speaks silently of the contributions
made by the former Jewish community to Nagasaki.
(5) Foreign-run Businesses
Even before the official opening of Nagasaki to foreign trade on July 1, 1859, foreign
merchants entered the port and began to establish contact with the representatives of
various han (feudal clans) of southwestern Japan. Since land had still not been procured
for the foreign settlement, these merchants rented rooms in houses and temples in the
Japanese town. After the construction of the foreign settlement, the Oura neighborhood
became home to dozens of trading companies, ship chandlers, shipping agencies, auction
houses and other businesses run by foreigners. And just as they lay closer than any other
Nagasaki neighborhood to the mouth of Nagasaki Harbor, the settlement and its cluster of
foreign businesses sat at the vanguard of Japan's push for globalization during the vibrant
years of the Meiji Period.
One of the earliest merchants to begin operations in Nagasaki was William J. Alt. Alt arrived
in Nagasaki on October 27, 1859 and opened a general commission agency called Alt & Co.
After establishing business links with a number of feudal clans, the young Englishman made a
quick fortune trading in tea, marine products, ships and weapons. One of his foremost
contacts was Iwasaki Yataro, a young representative of the Tosa Clan who had been
stationed in Nagasaki to negotiate trade deals and who would go on later, with Alt's help, to
found the Mitsubishi Co. Alt & Co. had offices on the waterfront at No. 7 Oura and also
operated tea-firing warehouses No. 18, 19 and 20 Oura, where tea from the neighboring
countryside was dried by hundreds of Japanese laborers working on rotating shifts 24 hours
a day. Alt built his private residence at No.14 Minamiyamate, a choice spot on the hillside
overlooking Nagasaki harbor.
Another prominent merchant in the early days of the settlement was Kenneth R.
Mackenzie, who came here as a representative of Jardine, Matheson & Co. A skilled trader
with years of experience in the Far East, Mackenzie rented a Japanese building at Myogyoji
Temple and, when a French Consulate was opened there, served as the first French consul.
After the construction of the foreign settlement, he also rented No.15 Oura and served as a
local agent for the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co. In addition to his business
and consular duties, Mackenzie also organized the first fire brigade in the foreign settlement
When Kenneth R. Mackenzie left Nagasaki in June 1861, he gave the reins of the Nagasaki
branch of Jardine, Matheson & Co. to a young fellow Scotsman named Thomas B. Glover,
who had been working as a clerk in the office since the autumn of 1859. Glover established
his own company (Glover & Co.) in 1862 and over the next few years made a fortune selling
steamships, guns and other merchandise to the clans of southwestern Japan. He also
introduced various modern technologies to Japan and arranged for both the import of
related machines and facilities and the employment of British engineers to serve as
advisors. His achievements not only facilitated Japan's efforts at modernization but also
contributed enormously to the development of the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement. In 1863,
Glover arranged with the Japanese master carpenter Koyama Hidenoshin to build a house
on the Minamiyamate hillside. This building, which was designed for use by foreigners but
built by Japanese hands using Japanese materials, symbolized the earliest meeting of
European and Japanese culture in a new age of globalization. In 1870, Glover's Nagasaki
trading firm Glover & Co. went bankrupt as a result of debts incurred around the time of
the Meiji Restoration, but the Scotsman stayed in Japan and became involved with
expanding Japanese industries.
However successful, the companies established by Alt, Mackenzie and Glover were all short-
lived. But Holme, Ringer & Co., established in 1868 by Glover & Co. employee Frederick
Ringer, became a Nagasaki institution and stayed in business here until being forced to close
on the eve of World War II. From its office at No.7 on the Oura Bund, the company
unfolded a dazzling array of business activities. Starting out as a importer-exporter dealing
in tea, coal, marine products, vegetable wax and tobacco, it later expanded into a banking,
insurance and shipping agency with branch offices in China, Korea and several other
Japanese ports. The company also operated a flourmill, steam laundry, tanning factory, gas
supplier, power station, stevedore business, trawler fishing company and whaling company.
At the peak of activity in the foreign settlement, Ringer also launched a daily English
language newspaper, the Nagasaki Press, and led a group of investors in the construction of
the grand "Nagasaki Hotel" on the waterfront in 1898. Although historians have paid him
much less attention than his former employer Thomas Glover, Frederick Ringer made
tremendous contributions, not only to the development of the foreign settlement and the
economic prosperity of Nagasaki, but also to the cultivation of a new generation of
Japanese enterprises that emulated the Western-style business practices of Holme, Ringer
& Co. and borrowed from its international expertise.
Other foreign enterprises that appeared and thrived in Nagasaki are Major & Co., M.C.
Adams & Co., N. Mess & Co., R.H Powers & Co. and R.N. Walker & Co. The hundreds of
foreigners who worked for these companies over the years lived on the Higashiyamate and
Minamiyamate hillsides or in rooms rented in hotels and buildings in the Oura district, many
staying here for decades or finding an unexpected permanent home in the international
cemeteries of Nagasaki.
(6) Stores and Factories
Separated from the Japanese town politically, geographically and culturally, the Nagasaki
Foreign Settlement by nature had to maintain a high level of self-determination and self-
sufficiency. At every year of its existence - and particularly during the peak years around
the turn of the 20th century - a cross section of the settlement reveals Europeans,
Americans and Chinese at virtually every social station from diplomat and doctor to barber,
undertaker and store clerk. Since the foreign residents naturally chose a lifestyle similar to
that in their own home countries - and many necessities were unavailable in Japan - the
supply of foreign furniture, clothing, accessories, foodstuffs and various other items became
an important industry in the settlement and led to the development of an urban business
core similar to that in European and American cities and in the older colonial enclaves of
With regard to foods and drinks, slaughterhouses were established in the Naminohira
waterfront area (at the southern edge of the settlement) soon after the establishment of
the foreign settlement and provided a steady supply of meat. Since the Japanese people of
the time did not drink milk, a dairy was also founded to provide fresh milk and other
products. One of the foreigners who made a living in the dairy business was G. Napalkov, a
Russian entrepreneur whose shop was located at No.36 Oura (on the southern bank of Oura
Another food in constant demand but unavailable in the Japanese town was bread. In the
early part of the Meiji Period, a French entrepreneur named Charles Thomas opened a
bakery and French provisions store at No.42a Oura. After his death in 1877, a Canadian of
French descent named Jean Couder took over the bakery and later re-opened it along with
a French restaurant at No.22 Oura. Although the proprietor later changed, this bakery
remained in business throughout the years of the foreign settlement.
Soft drinks such as lemonade, ginger ale and soda water were also produced by foreign
entrepreneurs and supplied to the residents of the settlement on a regular basis. One of
the principal producers was an establishment called the "Medical Hall," which, as the name
indicates, also served as an outlet for various imported drugs and medical supplies.
Launched in the 1860's by an Englishman named James Gye and located at No.12 Oura
(later No.11 Oura), the Medical Hall changed proprietors several times but served the
foreign residents of Nagasaki throughout the settlement years. The final proprietor, William
H. Evans, sold the establishment and its soft drink factory in September 1904. Historical
records indicate that the equipment was purchased by R.N. Walker and given a new life at
the "Banzai Aerated Water Factory" that he established in his warehouse at No.44a Oura
in December the same year.
Some of the other shops that vied for customer attention in the streets and alleys of the
Nagasaki Foreign Settlement - and made visitors feel like they were our for a walk in
Brighton or San Francisco - were the "Eureka Shaving Salon," "Mrs. Fullerton's Millinery
Shop," "G. Lodurqvist, Shoemaker," "N. Stibolt & Co., Shipwrights & Carpenters," "P.
Bernardi, Wines & General Stores Merchant," "D.F. Jacobs, Cabinet-maker," "Sigmund
Lessner, Fancy Goods and Auctioneer," "Nagasaki Steam Laundry, J. Nicholson," "Chang
Fong, tailor.," and "Saphiere & Co., Bicycle and Machines."
(7) Medical and Dental Treatment
During the early years of the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement, foreigners who suffered injuries
or came down with illnesses had very few choices with regard to medical treatment: they
could either visit the government-run hospital supervised by a Dutch physician but staffed
mostly by Japanese students with more potential than expertise, or they could wait for the
visit of one of the foreign physicians who traveled around the ports of the Far East. The
naval vessels calling regularly at Nagasaki invariably carried surgeons and physicians, but
these men naturally placed priority on the crews under their care.
As the settlement developed, however, the navies of the United States, Russia and other
countries built hospitals here for sailors who required intensive medical care. Also, foreign
physicians began to settle in Nagasaki for extended periods and to attend to the needs of
foreign residents, while at the same time often making medical and educational contributions
to the Japanese community as well. British physician Charles A. Arnold came to Nagasaki
in 1886 and opened a private practice in the Oura neighborhood. He also accepted a post
as lecturer in the government-run hospital and earned the respect of both the Japanese
and foreign communities. Dr. Edward Amuat, a native of Switzerland and naturalized
American citizen, came to Nagasaki in 1889 to serve as director of the government-run
hospital, and in addition to his duties there he opened a private practice for foreign
residents in his home at No.11 Higashiyamate. Dr. Mary Suganuma, an American physician
married to a Japanese man, came to Nagasaki in 1893 and opened (with financial assistance
from the Methodist Church) a hospital in Junin-machi where she treated both Japanese
and foreign patients.
Still another notable foreign physician who served the foreign and Japanese communities of
Nagasaki was Robert I. Bowie, an American navy physician who came to Nagasaki in 1897
and stayed on after being appointed acting assistant surgeon of the U.S. Public Health and
Marine Hospital Service at Nagasaki. Robert Bowie opened a clinic beside his residence at
No. 23 and No.24 Oura in January 1898. At the same time, he founded a Catholic hospital
called St. Bernard Hospital in Kosuge-machi for the treatment of foreign residents and
visitors. The hospital was situated on land owned by Les Soeurs de l'Enfant Jesus and was
staffed by the French sisters. Robert Bowie died of kidney failure on April 24, 1911 at the
age of 54. St. Bernard Hospital closed the following year, but the Bowie residence and clinic
in Oura were purchased by a Japanese physician and later re-opened as "Aoki Hospital."
(8) Foreign Language Newspapers
Launched on June 22, 1861 by British auctioneer Albert Hansard, the "Nagasaki Shipping
List and Advertiser" was the first modern newspaper published in Japan. As the name
indicates, it was primarily a vehicle for shipping information and advertisements. The fact
that more than half of the advertisements were placed by businesses in Shanghai shows
how, especially in its early years, the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement was like a satellite to its
larger and older counterpart in China. The newspaper also reported on various local events,
such as the launching of the "Phantom" - Japan's first yacht and first locally constructed
Western-style ship - by Scottish carpenter James Mitchell. It was published twice weekly
until October I the same year when Hansard moved his printing press to Yokohama and
established the Japan Herald.
The next English newspaper, the "Nagasaki Times," appeared in 1868 but lasted only a year.
It was followed by the Nagasaki Shipping List, which also stayed in print for only a few
months. It was the founding of the "Nagasaki Express" on January 15, 1870 that marked
the beginning of an unbroken series of English newspapers that served the foreign
community of Nagasaki until 1928. The editor was the Portuguese Filomeno Braga, who had
been involved earlier in a newspaper in Kobe. The "Nagasaki Express" carried shipping
information, business and banking reports, church notices, letters to the editor and articles
on local events. It reported, for example, on the laying of the first telegraph cables linking
Japan with the outside world (Nagasaki-Shanghai) in 1871, and published the first
advertisement for telegrams. It also publicly criticized the Japanese government for
dispersing some 3,000 Nagasaki Christians to other parts of the country in 1870 and in that
way played a role in the lifting of the national ban on Christianity in 1873.
With the growth of the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement, other English-language newspapers
such as the "Nagasaki Gazette," the "Nagasaki Shipping List" and the "Rising Sun"
appeared. The first two newspapers soon folded, and in May 1874 the Rising Sun and the
Nagasaki Express merged into a new newspaper called the "Rising Sun and Nagasaki Express.
" This newspaper was also a weekly. It served the foreign community for more than two
subsequent decades until its 956th, and final, issue rolled off the presses in September
During the interval between 1894 and 1897, when international business activity soared in
Nagasaki, four other English newspapers circulated: the "Cosmopolitan Press," "Kiushu
Times," "Nagasaki Observer" and the third incarnation of the "Nagasaki Shipping List."
Thus, around the time of the Sino-Japanese War, there were no fewer than five English-
language newspapers competing for attention in the tiny but prosperous Nagasaki Foreign
Frederick Ringer, president of the British firm Holme Ringer & Co. and the most influential
foreign businessman in Nagasaki, bought both the "Rising Sun and Nagasaki Express" and
the "Nagasaki Shipping List" and amalgamated these into a new daily newspaper called the "
Nagasaki Press," the first issue of which appeared on September 6, 1897. Unlike its
predecessors, the "Nagasaki Press" focused mainly on international news delivered by wire
service and therefore lacked detailed information about local culture and events. Ringer
tried to correct this shortfall in September 1904 by launching a 12-page illustrated monthly
called "Cherry Blossoms," which carried interesting articles about the history and culture of
Nagasaki and about nearby points of interest. "Cherry Blossoms" ceased publication in
1908 after 37 issues.
The most famous of the Nagasaki editors was Wilmot Lewis, who married Frederick Ringer's
daughter Jessie. After leaving Nagasaki he won acclaim as a war correspondent in the
Russo-Japanese War (1904-1905). Later he was on the staff of the "Times" (London) and
was knighted for his achievements as Washington correspondent during World War I.
The "Nagasaki Press" continued its daily publication until July 31, 1928 (9,118 issues in all),
when the dwindling foreign population of Nagasaki and the global economic depression forced
the editors to close down the city's last English newspaper. Most of the English-language
newspapers published in Nagasaki are preserved today at the Nagasaki Prefectural Library
and remain as an invaluable source of information about the former foreign settlement,
about the activities of its inhabitants, and about the interaction of the Japanese and foreign
communities of Nagasaki during the Meiji, Taisho and early Showa Period.
Another lesser-known foreign language newspaper is the "Volya," a Russian newspaper
published in Nagasaki from 1906 to 1907. After the humiliating defeat of Russia in the Russo
-Japanese War of 1904-05, a band of Russian expatriates led by a political activist and
former medical doctor named Nikolai Russell made Nagasaki a base for their activities,
stirring up anti-czarist feelings among prisoners-of-war here and distributing populist
literature on ships carrying the soldiers home. In April 1906, the band founded a Russian-
language newspaper called Volya ("Will") in the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement, using this as a
vehicle for the propagation of populist philosophy. Working from the safe oasis of Nagasaki,
the zealots were able to communicate ideas to a wide readership in the ports of Japan and
China. In March 1907, they moved their base of activity back onto the continent, and the "
Volya" ceased publication after less than a year in print.
(9) Entertainment and Sports
a) Public Hall
Although they enjoyed the privilege of extraterritoriality and were free to lead a lifestyle of
their own design, the foreign residents of Nagasaki were confined, just like the Dutch on
Dejima, to the relatively small space of the foreign settlement. During the early years when
restrictions were particularly tight, they sought permission from Japanese authorities to
hold picnics at Nezumijima, to make excursions on horseback to the surrounding
countryside, and to travel to the hot springs at Obama and Unzen for "therapeutic"
reasons. They also quickly developed a variety of recreational activities within the
settlement and participated in these above the barriers of religion and nationality. These
activities marked the introduction to Japan of various Western games and sports.
One of the first recreational facilities was a building, open to the public, to accommodate
theatrical and musical performances. This was soon nicknamed the "Olympic Theatre," and
a group of foreign residents gathered to form an acting troupe called the "Nagasaki
Amateur Dramatic Corps." In the mid-1870s, the new "Public Hall and Theatre" was
erected at No. 31 Oura, the lot used previously by the Municipal Council. Over the years,
this stage saw a wide variety of events such as musical recitals by violinist Kitty Walker
(daughter of R.N. Walker) and other local musicians, magic shows by traveling entertainers
like Madame Cora and Annie May Abbott, plays by the crew of the U.S. cruiser New
Orleans, concerts by the orchestra from the Italian cruiser Marco Polo and the Russian
String Quartet; and dances held to welcome the crews of visiting warships. The Public Hall
also hosted a number of charity concerts. In February 1905, a band from the 9th US
Infantry performed here, and the proceeds were donated to a fund for Japanese sick and
wounded in the Russo-Japanese War. The following February, a benefit was held for famine
relief victims in northeastern Japan. In December 1923, the Public Hall fell into such severe
financial difficulty that the trustees decided to sell the buildings and land to Nagasaki
Kyokai. This event marked not only the end of the Public Hall but also another step in the
disintegration of the former Nagasaki Foreign Settlement after World War I. Nagasaki
Kyokai removed the old building and erected a new church building on the site in October
1925. This building still stands today.
b) Bowling and Tennis
The foreign residents also entertained themselves with billiards, badminton, croquet and
other games. One of the earliest forms of indoor recreation introduced after the opening of
the port was bowling. In the June 22, 1861 issue of the Nagasaki Shipping List and
Advertiser, a small advertisement announces the opening of the "International Bowling
Saloon" on Hirobaba Street in the settlement, Japan's first bowling lane. After this, bowling
lanes became a standard feature in many of the hotels constructed in the settlement. The
sport in fact became so popular that the "Nagasaki Bowling Club" was later established at
No.10A Minamiyamate and served for many years as a social institution for residents of all
ages and nationalities.
Another sport that gained popularity in the foreign settlement was tennis. Because of the
spacious dimensions of the lots in Minamiyamate, the foreigners residing here - among them
Thomas Glover and Nathan Mess - were able to build tennis courts near their homes and to
use these, not only for tennis matches, but also for outdoor concerts, luncheons, wedding
parties, and other social gatherings. A group of foreign wives even gathered to form the "
Ladies Lawn Tennis Club." Today the tennis courts are gone, but the heavy stone grass
roller left beside one of the pathways in Glover Garden serves as a reminder of their former
c) Boat Races
Still another athletic activity pursued by the foreign residents of Nagasaki throughout the
foreign settlement period was boat racing in Nagasaki Harbor, the calmness of which
provided an ideal environment for this traditional British sport. Every year in spring, the
foreign residents gathered along with the crews of visiting ships for a day-long regatta,
forming teams that participated in various events and vied for cash prizes and a
championship cup. The Nagasaki Racing and Athletic Committee, which oversaw these
events, built a Western-style boat house on the shore at Naminohira where spectators
could watch the races from a wide second-floor veranda. At the "Nagasaki Regatta" of
April 26, 1871, which was reported in detail in the Nagasaki Express, the program included
races for yachts over seven tons, sailing boats, ships' cutters and canoes. In the canoe
race, a 32 year-old Thomas Glover came in second and so was unfortunately unable to
collect the $10 prize.
(10) Western-style Hotels
Western-style hotels were among the first buildings erected in the Nagasaki Foreign
Settlement after the opening of the country's doors in 1859. The first mention of a "hotel"
in records related to the foreign settlement is an advertisement for the Commercial Hotel
carried in the July 10, 1861 issue of the English-language newspaper The Nagasaki Shipping
List and Advertiser. The location of this establishment is unclear, but it was probably a
refurbished Japanese building in the Hirobaba neighborhood. The content of the
advertisement suggests that it was more of a tavern and bowling alley than a place for
During the allotment of foreign settlement property carried out by the consular body in
October 1860, two Americans residents -- Caroline Weeks and Nathaniel Simmons -
acquired the leases to Oura Nos.25 and 26, respectively. Both would soon erect Western-
style hotels on these lots, namely, the "Commercial House" and the "Oriental Hotel."
The 1865 issue of the "Japan Directory" shows the existence of three hotels in the
Nagasaki Foreign Settlement: the "Commercial House" still run by Caroline Weeks, the "
Oriental Hotel" transferred to M. Broderick, and the "Bellevue Hotel" run by Mary Green,
wife of the former British consulate constable.
The word "hotel" was soon also being used by a large number of low-class taverns, many of
them located along the banks of Oura River. These taverns, which catered primarily to
foreign sailors, earned a bad reputation as hotbeds for drunkenness, brawls and illegal
prostitution. In the spring of 1883, British Minister Sir Harry Parkes asked the acting consul
in Nagasaki, John C. Hall, to conduct a thorough investigation because the British naval
authorities had filed a complaint about the prevalence of venereal diseases in the Nagasaki
Foreign Settlement. In a later report, Hall lists 22 foreign-run public houses in the
settlement and states that, "of this number only five are hotels at which board and lodging
for travelers is procurable, and of this five only two are fit for respectable people to stop
at. The other 20 houses therefore consist of three low class hotels so-called and
seventeen grog shops or taverns." The only two establishments deemed "respectable" by
Hall were the Bellevue Hotel and the International Hotel (opened at No.6 Umegasaki in 1872).
After the Sino-Japanese War of 1894-5, however, Nagasaki saw a dramatic increase in the
visits of large passenger liners plying the ocean routes linking Hong Kong and Shanghai with
Vancouver, San Francisco and other ports on the North American west coast. The city
also gained fame as Kyushu's main international trade port, as an exotic sightseeing spot,
and as a gateway to the summer resort of Unzen, and the wealthy foreign travelers who
disembarked here created a demand for a finer class of hotel.
As a result, several grand Western-style hotels appeared in the Oura neighborhood during
the closing years of the 19th century. These included the Japan Hotel at No.25 Oura (site
of the former Commercial House), the Hotel de France at No.33 Oura, and the Cliff House
Hotel at No.10 Minamiyamate.
The most imposing of the hotels built during Nagasaki's golden age as an international port
was undoubtedly the Nagasaki Hotel, a three-story brick and stone building erected on the
Sagarimatsu (present-day Matsugae-machi) waterfront in 1897 by a group of foreign
investors led by Frederick Ringer. The Nagasaki Hotel boasted a panoramic view of the
harbor, telephones in every room, private electric plant, expensive European furnishings,
appliances and tableware, richly stocked wine cellar, hairdressing salon and French chefs.
However, Nagasaki fortunes as an international port declined after the Russo-Japanese War
and one hotel after another closed in the former foreign settlement. The Hotel de France
succumbed in 1909 and the Cliff House Hotel in 1918. The Bellevue Hotel, the oldest
Western-style hotel in Nagasaki, closed in 1920.
Meanwhile, the company running the Nagasaki Hotel declared bankruptcy in 1904. Holme,
Ringer & Co. took over and revived the hotel, but it closed down again in 1908 and remained
empty until 1918 when Japanese merchant Mori Arayoshi (森荒吉) assumed management.
However, the hotel faltered again and was closed permanently in 1924.
The Japan Hotel met an unexpected demise in December 1937, burning to the ground in an
accidental fire. A few smaller hotels, including the Golden Eagle Hotel, Europe Hotel and
Kaida Hotel, remained functioning in the former foreign settlement, but all of them were
gone by the end of World War Two.
During the Edo Period, Goshinji Temple in the Inasa district (the side of Nagasaki Harbor
opposite the main town) was the site of cemeteries for the Dutch and Chinese, who were
the only foreigners allowed a foothold in Japan during the period of national isolation. In
1858, a Russian Naval Cemetery was opened beside the Dutch Cemetery for the burial of
several seamen on the Russian frigate "Askold" who died during an outbreak of cholera.
After the opening of the port in 1859 and the establishment of the foreign settlement,
another cemetery was established at Goshinji to accommodate foreign graves, but this soon
proved too small and also inconvenient for the foreign community clustered on the other
side of the harbor.
In 1861 the British consul spearheaded negotiations with the Japanese authorities for the
establishment of an international cemetery closer to the foreign settlement. The Japanese
complied, and a new cemetery was opened in present-day Kawakami-machi. Referred to
today as Oura International Cemetery, this cemetery contains 283 graves arranged in 13
rows on five levels. The earliest legible tombstone is dated June 21, 1861, but many of the
other stones have eroded or disappeared over the years. Oura International Cemetery
served the foreign community until becoming virtually full in the late 1880's. In 1888, a large
new foreign cemetery was opened at Urakami Yamazato (present-day Sakamoto-machi)
and served the foreign residents of Nagasaki until after World War II. Today, Sakamoto
International Cemetery and its adjacent addition contain about 440 graves where people of
at least 16 nationalities lie in eternal rest.
(Click here for an illustrated essay on the international cemeteries of Nagasaki.)
In July 1894 the Japanese ambassador to Britain, Aoki Shuzo, succeeded in negotiations
with his British counterparts to revise the Anglo-Japanese treaty in force since 1858.
Signed in London on July 16, 1894 and effective as of July 17, 1899, the new "Anglo-
Japanese Commercial Treaty" called for an end to extraterritoriality and a restoration of
Japan's right to autonomy in customs tariffs. Britain agreed on the condition that Japan
guarantee the rights of British entrepreneurs to travel, live and do business anywhere they
wanted in Japan. The United States, France and other countries soon emulated Britain and
agreed to treaty revisions. The momentous change in Japan's relationship with the world
and in the status of foreigners living in this country arrived on July 17, 1899. At the top of
its editorial page, the Nagasaki Press gushed that:
"Today, the 17th of July, marks an epoch in the history of Japan, a country that has
already surprised the Occident by its wonderful adaptation in so short a time to the modern
civilization of the Western world. After years of patient toiling on the part of her able
statesmen, Japan today enters upon an equal footing with all the Powers, and now holds the
proud distinction of being the first Oriental nation to exercise jurisdiction over Occidentals.
The old Treaties have ceased to exist, and there is reason to believe that under the new
order of things foreigners resident in this country, and those who come after, will have little
to fear from the change."
The end of extraterritoriality and the abolition of the foreign settlements was in fact a soft
landing, mainly because Nagasaki was enjoying an unprecedented economic boom that
issued directly from the visits of foreign ships to its harbor. Thus, although legally abolished,
the Nagasaki Foreign Settlement persisted as an unofficial institution retaining its primarily
foreign population, its unique social infrastructure and its quasi-Western architectural
identity. And for the foreigners who lived there, the settlement continued to provide a safe
gray zone neither really in Japan nor out.
For the first few years after the turn of the century, Nagasaki continued to prosper as a
trade port, coaling station and shipbuilding center, but as soon as war broke out between
Japan and Russia in February 1904, the Japanese government imposed martial law on the
city because of its proximity to the theater of war, and military forces established
checkpoints at key locations, laid mines at the entrance to the harbor and monitored all
maritime traffic. In the ensuing months the city fell into a deep economic slump as a result
of the suspension of commercial shipping. Companies run by Russians or involved in
business with Russia, such as M. Ginsburg & Co., N. Mess & Co. and the Russo-Chinese
Bank, closed their Nagasaki offices or transferred their agencies to British firms. Hotel
rooms, restaurant tables and bar counters in the former foreign settlement meanwhile lay
In the years after the Russo-Japanese War, Nagasaki saw a few spurts of activity but
never fully regained its former vitality as an international port. The foreigners living in the
former foreign settlement gradually departed, selling their homes in Minamiyamate and
Higashiyamate to Japanese buyers and casting their offices and stores in Oura to the winds
After World War II, the former foreign settlement was little more than an empty shell, and
few of the Japanese inhabitants of the old buildings had any interest in its history or the
stories of the people who once lived there. The demolition of historic buildings and their
replacement with modern structures continued unchecked, and by the end of the 20th
century less than one tenth of the buildings of the former foreign settlement remained.
But when the dust is swept away and the forgotten stories of the Nagasaki Foreign
Settlement are recalled, researchers will find a unique period in Japanese history when a
few foreigners of various nationalities and religions lived in peaceful cooperation with their
Japanese neighbors and made important contributions to the modernization of Japan and
to the industrial, educational, and cultural development of Nagasaki.
Nagasaki Foreign Settlement
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