Kano Washio (加納鷲雄)

Washio KANO (December 14, 1839 - October 27, 1902) was an officer and corporal of the Shinsengumi masterless warriors' party; he later became a member of Goryo-eji (guardians of Imperial mausoleums) party (Kodaiji-to party). He was also known as Michinosuke KANO. He was from Izu Province, and his martial style was Hokushin Itto-ryu kendo school. His was formerly known as Taro IZU. After the Meiji Restoration he identified himself as Michihiro KANO.

In 1839, he was born as the first son of Bampei TAKANO in Kano Village, Kamo County, Izu Province. He went to Edo at a young age to enter the Ito kendo training hall for Hokushin Itto-ryu kendo school located in Fukagawa-saga Town. He studied under Kinetaro ITO (later, Kinetaro), the school manager, while also working with Tainoshin SHINOHARA at the Kanagawa Magistrate's office (also where Jibu'uemon KUBOTA worked) on security for Yokohama City's Enclave for foreign residents.

In October 1864, he went to Kyoto and applied for the position of members of the Shinsengumi masterless warriors' party with ITO and succeeded in getting the position. He became a corporal upon an organizational restructuring in spring of the following year; but, in April 1867, he left Shinsengumi masterless warriors' party to join the Goryo-eji party (Kodaiji-to party)--organized by ITO, its leader. In November of the same year, he successfully avoided trouble in the Abura-no-koji Incident, which involved the assassination of ITO by the Shinsengumi masterless warriors' party, and was sheltered at Satsuma-Hantei (Satsuma domain's residence maintained by a daimyo in Edo). On January 12, 1868, he assaulted Isami KONDO on Fushimi-kaido Road together with Tainoshin SHINOHARA and the others of the Goryo-eji (guardians of Imperial mausoleums) party to retaliate against him for his involvement in the Abura-no-koji Incident.

In the Boshin War, which began with the Battle of Toba and Fushimi in January 1868, he fought battles along with the Sekihotai Army and then the Satsuma army. On April 26 of the same year when he was in Itabashi camp he discovered Isami KONDO, who was disguised in an attempt to run away, among the soldiers of the Bakufu army who surrendered themselves to the government forces in Shimousa Province. He carried to his grave an obsession with the idea that Isami KONDO was the man who killed Ryoma SAKAMOTO.

After the Meiji Restoration, he worked as a Hokkaido Development Commissioner, at the No-Shomusho (Agriculture and Commerce Department) (Japan) etc., and in October 1902, died in his residence in Azabu, Tokyo Prefecture. He died at the age of 64.

[Original Japanese]