Back to top

On the deadline for all foreigners to be expelled, Japanese factions begin attacking Western shipping

"American Merchant Strolling in Yokohama," Satahide Utagawa, circa 1861, detail
The Japanese Imperial Court had announced three weeks before that all foreigners were to leave Japanese soil by this date. The fiercely anti-Western Chōshū clan, whose domain was in Shimoneseki on the island of Honshu, began attacking foreign shipping at the deadline, starting with the U. S. merchant ship Pembroke bound for Shanghai. The vessel was able to escape and inform Western authorities. (By John Osborne) 
Source Citation: 
Gopal Kshetry, Foreigners in Japan: A Historical Perspective (New York: Xlibris Corporation, 2008), np.