Thursday, August 11 1921: Masana Maeda, a planner of Industrial policy in Meiji era, died.

1921 (Taisho 10) On Thursday, August 11, Masana Maeda, who had led the Meiji government’s policy of encouraging new industries, passed away. He was 71 years old.

Masana MAEDA was born in 1850. His father was a doctor of the Satsuma Domain, Zen-an MAEDA. I was born as his second son. He studied Western studies under Shohei Yagi, who was a scholar of the Satsuma Domain at the age of 9. Shohei Yagi is an interesting person who was born in Tenpo 3 (1832), so he is 18 years older than Masana Maeda. So when Masana Maeda joined Yagi, his master Yagi was 31 years old. By the order of Nariakira SHIMAZU, Yagi studied Western studies for 2 years at Tekijuku of Koan OGATA, and he just returned to Satsuma and opened a Western studies school in his hometown Kagoshima. Yagi also carried out illicit trade with Ryukyu by the order of Nariakira, and here he had Masana MAEDA, a young boy, help with illicit trade. It is interesting to think about Masana Maeda’s plan to encourage new industries.

After that, Maeda studied in Nagasaki at the domain’s expense and was strongly influenced by Godai Tomoatsu of Satsuma. Since Godai was born in 1836, he was 14 years older than Masana Maeda. Of course, Godai was also a person who led the business world of Japan in the Meiji period, especially the economy of Osaka. Maeda Masana became a bureaucrat who worked out practical plans under the influence of Yagi Shouhei and Godai Tomoatsu. One of the most famous is “General Opinion on Direct Trade” written by Maeda in 1879 (1879), which includes three important opinions (1)establishment of a central bank, (2)establishment of a trading company, (3)establishment of an industrial cartel.

Furthermore, he became an executive officer and director of the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Agriculture and Commerce, and in 1884 (1884), he submitted a report entitled “Opinion on Industry,” a total of 30 volumes, which investigated the actual conditions of domestic industries, and this had an impact on the industry.

By the way, the wife of Masana Maeda is a niece of Toshimichi Okubo. Okubo is well known, but he has three younger sisters, Kitchi, Suma and Mine. In the Taiga drama “Sego-Don”, three sisters were depicted as younger sisters who support their older brothers. The youngest child, Mine, married Chikayoshi Ishihara, who was also a feudal retainer of Satsuma and was famous for being involved in the establishment of the National Police Agency, and became Mine Ishihara. The second daughter of Chikayoshi and Mine Ishihara is Ichi. She became the wife of Maeda Masana.

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