Ono Uchu (大野右仲)

Uchu ONO (January 14, 1837 - June 11, 1911) was a feudal retainer of the Karatsu Domain in the end of Edo period and a member of the Shinsengumi. He served as todori (chief). Later, he served as an assistant army commissioner.

He was born as the first son of a feudal retainer of Karatsu Domain, Kansuke ONO, and he entered Shoheizaka Gakumonjo (Shoheizaka School) at the age of 21 in 1856.

At the outbreak of the Boshin War, he followed the lord of domain, Nagamichi OGASAWARA, and went into Aizu. Around the beginning of May, he stayed in his old friend, Tsugunosuke KAWAI's who rose to Hitto karo (the head of chief retainers) of the Echigo Nagaoka Domain at that time, and he came upon the scene where the Nagaoka Domain started the war with the New government army due to breaking off of Ojiya danpan (Ojiya negotiation) after Nagaoka Domain's adhering to neutrality ("Shidankaisokkiroku"). After he visited Toshizo HIJIKATA, who was recuperating, and researched the war situation, he joined the Shinsengumi in Sendai. He joined Takeaki Enomoto's fleet, and went to Ezo.

Under Hakodate Government (Ezo Republic), he became an immediate subordinate of Toshizo HIJIKATA who took office as 陸軍奉行並 (the corresponding post of an army commissioner), and then, he served as Hijikata's assistant from the battle at Fatamataguchi to the all-out assault of Hakodate.

After surrender, he presented himself at the New government. In 1871, he became gon-sanji of Kumihama Prefecture and gon-sanji of Toyooka Prefecture. Moreover, he successively hold important posts in Chiba, Nagano and Aomori Prefecture. He also wrote down a record of the Hakodate war ("Hakodate Senki (the Record of the Hakodate War)."

He died in 1911. He died at the age of 76.

Death of Toshizo Hijikata

According to Ono's literary work "Hakodate Senki", Ono saw Toshizo HIJIKATA who was on the way to Hakodate City at Chiyogaoka jinya (regional government office), and accompanied him to Ippongi kanmon (a barrier). Since the warship of the New government army, Cyoyomaru, was torpedoed and sunk by the warship of the former army of bakufu (Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun), Banryumaru, in Hakodate Port, they made an attack toward the direction of Benten Daiba (Cape Benten Battery) by Hijikata's command.
Although soldiers took flight one after another, it is said that Ono believed that 'Hijikata certainly stopped them at Kanmon.'
However, when Ono was surprised that there was no sign of decreasing the number of soldiers who took flight and returned to Chiyogaoka jinya, he was told by his colleagues such as Torao OSHIMA and Saisuke YASUTOMI that Hijikata was killed in the war.

After that, he told Kazue SOMA who visited to Goryokaku to meet Hijikata about his death.

It is said that Ono surrendered to the enemy with other Shinsengumi members at Benten Daiba, however there is also a different view concerning this.

[Original Japanese]