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Edward and Henry Schnell: Wikis

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A reenactment of the German weapons dealer Henry Schnell in the 2006 Aizu Clan Parade in Aizu-Wakamatsu, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan.

Edward and Henry Schnell were two brothers and German arms-dealers active in Japan during the Boshin war, in 1868-1869. Henry is known to have counselled the Daimyo of Nagaoka, in Niigata, to whom he especially sold two Gatling guns (only another one existed in Japan at the time), 2,000 French rifles, and various other armaments.

Edward Schnell also served the Aizu domain as a military instructor and procurer of weapons. He was granted the Japanese name Hiramatsu Buhei (平松武兵衛 ?), which inverted the characters of the daimyo's name Matsudaira (松平 ?). Hiramatsu (Schnell) was given the right to wear swords, as well as a residence in the castle town of Wakamatsu, a Japanese wife (the daughter of a Shōnai-han retainer), and retainers. In many contemporary references, he is portrayed as wearing a Japanese kimono, overcoat, and swords, with Western riding trousers and boots.

Further reading

  • Adachi Yoshio 阿達義雄. Kaishō Suneru to Boshin Niigata kōbōsen 怪商スネルと戊辰新潟攻防戦. Niigata: Toyano Shuppan 鳥屋野出版, 1985.

, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan.]] Edward and Henry Schnell were two brothers and German arms-dealers active in Japan during the Boshin war, in 1868-1869. Henry is known to have counselled the Daimyo of Nagaoka, in Niigata, to whom he especially sold two Gatling guns (only another one existed in Japan at the time), 2,000 French rifles, and various other armaments.

Edward Schnell also served the Aizu domain as a military instructor and procurer of weapons. He was granted the Japanese name Hiramatsu Buhei (平松武兵衛?), which inverted the characters of the daimyo's name Matsudaira (松平?). Hiramatsu (Schnell) was given the right to wear swords, as well as a residence in the castle town of Wakamatsu, a Japanese wife (the daughter of a Shōnai-han retainer), and retainers. In many contemporary references, he is portrayed as wearing a Japanese kimono, overcoat, and swords, with Western riding trousers and boots.

Further reading

  • Adachi Yoshio 阿達義雄. Kaishō Suneru to Boshin Niigata kōbōsen 怪商スネルと戊辰新潟攻防戦. Niigata: Toyano Shuppan 鳥屋野出版, 1985.
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