JAPAN PHOTOS by Philbert Ono

*Be sure to wear a mask when traveling.


Most viewed - Iimoriyama Hill (Byakkotai) 飯盛山
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Monument from Rome, Italy, given in 1928 by Mussolini. The column is from the ruins of a palace in Pompeii.288 views
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Byakkotai souvenirs224 views
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Monument from a German, Hasso von Etzdorf (1900 - 1989).208 views
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Monument message in Italian. After WWII, the US Occupation authorities wanted this monument removed. But all they did was remove the engraved message (later restored).187 views
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Entrance to Iimoriyama Hill, site of the Byakkotai "White Tiger" Battalion gravesite. In 1868, a unit of teenage warriors called Byakkotai (White Tiger Battalion) fought against the Emperor-backed Imperial forces encroaching their domain of Aizu186 views
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About the monument from Rome.166 views
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Graves of the 19 teenage Byakkotai warriors who killed themselves with their own swords.150 views
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Painting depicting Byakkotai suicide on Iimoriyama Hill150 views
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Byakkotai gravestones. Each one shows the name, age, and method of death called "jijin" (died with one's own sword 自刃).145 views
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Sazaedo145 views
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Escalator to go up Iimoriyama Hill. Their tombstones are on this hill near where they killed themselves. Their story has become legend.143 views
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Another monument140 views
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Byakkotai Gravesite. It is on a flat area which also has several other Byakkotai monuments including those from other countries.139 views
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Approach to the Byakkotai gravesite.134 views
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Slope where they committed seppuku (hara-kiri). 自刃の地133 views
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Byakkotai statue outside the Byakkotai Memorial Museum133 views
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In despair, the boys decided to kill themselves rather than die in the hands of the enemy. Photo: Escalator to go up Iimoriyama Hill.128 views
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On the left of the gravestones, there is a monument for a poem composed by Lord Matsudaira Katamori, the last Aizu lord and whom the Byakkotai died for. 幾人の 涙は石にそそぐとも その名は世々に 朽じとぞ思う128 views幾人の 涙は石にそそぐとも その名は世々に 朽じとぞ思う
Ikutari no namida wa ishi ni sosogu tomo sono na wa yoyo ni kuji to zo omou
"No matter how many people pour their tears on these stones, these names will never fade from the world."
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Grave of Iinuma Sadakichi (Sadao) (1854-1931). His grave was built here in 1957 for the 90th anniversary of the Byakkotai's demise. 飯沼貞吉128 views
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The Byakkotai were outnumbered and forced to retreat. Twenty of them escaped to Iimoriyama Hill where they saw what looked liked a burning Tsurugajo Castle. Photo: Pay a small fee to take the escalator up the hill. Or climb up the steps for free.126 views
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On the right side are more gravestones. These are 31 Byakkotai members who died in battle. 戦死126 views
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Statue of a teenage samurai looking at Wakamatsu Castle.126 views
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Arrow points to Tsuruga-jo Castle.125 views
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This has become a national shrine, almost as important as Sengakuji where the 47 masterless samurai are buried.123 views
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Site where they committed seppuku (hara-kiri). 自刃の地123 views
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Sazaedo, a unique wooden, hexagonal structure which you will see when coming down from Iimoriyama.123 views
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Names of Byakkotai members, all 14 to 17 years old.122 views
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Byakko Kannon statue121 views
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Byakkotai Graves120 views
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Byakkotai Graves120 views
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Sazaedo120 views
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A short walk away is the grave of Iinuma Sadakichi, the only Byakkotai survivor who had slit himself, but was rescued by a villager passing by when everyone else had killed themselves.119 views
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Opened in 1956, the Byakkotai Memorial Museum has numerous artifacts related to the Byakkotai as well as the Shinsengumi. Photography inside is not allowed. Admission 400 yen.117 views
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Monument for teenage samurai who died in battle.116 views
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Sazaedo116 views
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About Iinuma Sadakichi (later changed his first name to Sadao)114 views
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Tombs of those Byakkotai who died in action.113 views
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Uga Shrine 宇賀神社109 views
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Their names, age, and "senshi" 戦死 (died in battle) are engraved on the stones.108 views
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Statue faces Tsuruga-jo Castle which can be seen in the distance.108 views
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Byakkotai enshrined in Uga Shrine108 views
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Grave of Iinuma Sadakichi, the only Byakkotai warrior who survived and told the story of this valiant teenage group.107 views
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Tombs of those Byakkotai who died in action.102 views
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A recent addition is this statue of a teenage samurai looking at Wakamatsu Castle.101 views
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