As I’ve been continuing my research into out East Asian students, I’ve found that the Korean students are extremely interesting. Most of them have published their own writings in their own words on the Roanoke Collegian, making their own first hand accounts and the ability to read their thoughts in their own voices extremely helpful. While I’m still sifting through their information, I will be sure to give each of them their own posts as well when I have covered more of their history and their story.
As for today’s posting, I give you Junkichi Furukawa, one of our former Japanese students. Furukawa is interesting since he was the biological son of Mutsu Munemitsu, a diplomat in Meiji Japan, as well as the adopted son of Ichibei Furukawa, a very well off businessman in Japan who was known as the “Copper King of Japan”. After his time here in Roanoke, in 1903, Junkichi was given control of his father’s company and reorganized according to Japanese law. After Junkichi’s death in 1905, it was passed down to his brother. I was able to find photos of Junkichi’s grave on Ancestry.com and interestingly, it seems there is someone who regularly sends him and his father flowers to their graves on the website that was linked from Ancestry.
So far from all of my research regarding the East Asian students, all of them are coming from extremely wealthy and powerful backgrounds, which would explain why they would all go so far for their education.
Photos found here