Kagawa Keizo (香川敬三)

Keizo KAGAWA (December 27, 1841 - March 18, 1915) was a loyal supporter of the Emperor in the Mito Domain. He served as Daigungen (Senior Assistant Deputy General) at the Government-general of the Tosando Force, Kogogu no daibu (Master of the Empress's Household), Kotaigu no daibu (Master of the Empress Dowager's Household), and a member of Privy Councilors. His imina (personal name) was Hiroyasu (広安). His former family name was Kamata. His childhood names were Ryosuke and Tokumatsu. His former name was Iori KOINUMA.
He changed his name to Torajiro KOBAYASHI
In the Meiji period, he changed his name to Hiroyasu KAGAWA, and later to the current name. He was of the samurai class but incorporated into the peerage.
When the peerage system was established, he was given the title of viscount, and later he was raised to count
He was conferred Juichii (Junior First Rank) Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun with Paulownia Flower
Some suggest that he was born in 1839.

He was born as the third son between Juemon Takasada KAMATA, a goshi (country samurai) of the Mito Domain, and his wife Sode in Shimoisehata (present Hitachiomiya City)
His second elder brother was Tozo KAMATA. (in 1856, after his plot to attack Townsend HARRIS was uncovered, he was imprisoned and died there). He became the adopted son of Okinobu KOINUMA (Tsunahiko), who was a Shinto priest of Yoshida-jinja Shrine in Kamiisehata (Hitachiomiya City).

He studied at Noguchigo School (Jiyokan) in Mito and a private school lead by Toko FUJITA. In 1859, when the Chokusho Hokan Incident broke out, he took part in the Nagaoka activist group who gathered in present Nagaoka, Ibaragi-machi as a member of Shinkan-domei (Shinto priest association). The next year (1860) he raced over into Satsuma Domain with his comrade to advocate the expulsion of foreigners, as a result of which he was seized and confined at the Mito Domain estate in Edo. In 1863, he went to the capital (Kyoto) following the lord of domain Yoshiatsu TOKUGAWA as a member of the Shinkan-domei, and deepened a friendly tie with loyal supporters in various domains. Although he served as a close adviser of Yoshinobu HITOTSUBASHI for a while, he was dismissed because of his radical idea. (it is said that he took part in the Kyoto Honkokuji-to [Kyoto Hongan-ji Temple Party]).

Later he played an active role in the Yanagi no Zushi-to (Yanagi no Zushi Party). In 1865, he got acquainted with a court noble Tomomi IWAKURA. It is said that he was involved in the Zeze Incident and escaped into the residence of a loyal supporter, Kenzo INOUE. In 1867, he was promoted to Fukutaicho-kaku (vice- commander) of the Rikuentai (an association of masterless samurai), which had been organized by Shintaro NAKAOKA. After Nakaoka's assassination in November 1867, he raised a voluntary army near Mt. Koya in the following month and fought against local governors and various clans as Fukutaicho-kaku of Washinoo-tai Corps lead by Takatsumu WASHINOO. At that time, KAGAWA was prepared to die and sent a bunch of his hair to his hometown, where 'Koinuma Iori Maihatsu-to' (monument tower for the burial of Iori KOINUMA's hair) remains today in Kamiisehata (Hitachiomiya City).

When the Boshin War broke out, he charged forward as Daigungen (Senior Assistant Deputy General) at the Government-general of the Tosando Force headed by Tomomi IWAKURA's son, Tomosada,
He left Edo (Tokyo) for the Utsunomiya Domain, leading the army. It is said that on the way, he attacked a jinya (regional government office) of Koyo Chinbutai (Shinsengumi [literally, the newly selected corps, referring to a special police force for the Tokugawa regime]) in Nagareyama City, and made the Shinsengumi's leader Isami KONDO surrender. Although Shogungen (Junior Assistant Deputy General) Tota ARIMA told that he was still a hatayaku (flag man) at that time, the discovery of Okadake monjo (the Okada family's documents) confirmed a common view that he was the Daigungen (Senior Assistant Deputy General) of the Government-general of the Tosando Force. During the Battle of Utsunomiya Castle, he was defeated and forced out of the castle by Keisuke OTORI and Toshizo HIJIKATA, but he recaptured the castle with help of relief soldiers. After that he traveled up to Aizu, fighting in various places.

He later took the office of Hyobu no Gon no taijo (Provisional Senior Secretary of the Ministry of Military), but he asked for discharge saying that he did not find military service suits him. He was transferred to the Imperial Household Ministry, and held various important posts, such as Kunai gon no taijo and Kunai shojo (Junior Secretary). He was not selected to accompany Iwakura Mission against his wish, and he resigned from the Imperial Household Ministry to accompany the Mission at his own expenses. Later, he was allowed to be an official member of the Mission as Rijikan zuiko kokoroe (assistant attendant to the commissioner of the Imperial Household Ministry).

After he came back home, he worked again as a government official to the Imperial Household Ministry and assumed the following important posts: Kunai shojo (Junior Secretary of the Imperial Household Ministry), Kunai taijo (Senior Secretary of Imperial Household Ministry), Kunai-daishokikan (great secretary of the Imperial Household Ministry), Kogogu no daibu (Master of the Empress's Household), Kasei torishimariyaku (Senior Managing Director of the Household to Arisugawa no Miya of the Kaninnomiya family), Kotaigogu no suke (Assistant Master of the Empress Dowager's Household), Kunai no sho (Junior Assistant Minister of the Imperial Household Ministry), Director of the Peerage, Togu goyoiku shunin (chief nurturing staff for Imperial children), Tonomo no kami (Director of the Imperial Palace Keeper's Bureau), Shoryo no kami (Chief inspector of imperial tombs), Shume no kami (Manager of the Bureau of Imperial Mews), Kanin no miya betto (superintendent of Kanin no miya), Daizen no daibu (Master of the Palace Table), Goyo gakari (a general affaires official of the Imperial Household) of Higashi Fushimi no Miya, Daizen no to (Manager of the Palace Table), Gijo kan (Senior official of the Decoration Bureau), Privy Councilor, Kotaigu no daibu (Master of the Empress Dowager's Household).

It is said that in the Meiji period, he made efforts to restore impaired reputation of his comrades, who had worked together with him but died in the movements, and visited their bereaved families in various places to offer his apologetic sentiment and condolence. When he visited Noguchi (present Hitachiomiya City) to see the parents of Shingoro KASUYA, who was a member of Roshigumi (an organization of masterless samurai), he left an inscription about the members of the Kasuya family who died in battle.

He served as Goyogakari (a general affaires official of the Imperial Household) at the birth of Emperor Taisho, and as the head of Goyogakari for the wedding ceremony at the marriage of the Emperor. He worked very hard to have the title of duke conferred on Yoshinobu TOKUGAWA, and he proposed that the daughter of Yoshinobu TOKUGAWA be considered as a candidate to become Emperor Taisho's empress. Emperor Meiji and his wife the Empress Shoken were opposed to the educational policies championed by Takayuki SASAKI and Utako SHIMODA over how to educate imperial princes and princesses, and in accordance with their wishes, Keizo worked to obstruct Sasaki and Shimoda's policies. It is said that he always gave his seat to renshi (brothers and sisters of the former shogun) of the Tokugawa Family even after he became a count. During the Russo-Japanese War, he made it widely known to people that Ryoma SAKAMOTO appeared in a dream of the Empress in order to inspire them.

Also his daughter Shihoko KAGAWA took charge of Gon no naishi no jo and was called 'Kuretake no Naishi' (lady-in-waiting Kuretake). She assumed concurrently Togu-shiki (the Board of the Crown Prince's Affairs) in 1890. After she studied in England, she worked as an interpreter or an adviser on clothing.

[Original Japanese]