Recommended reading: “Sokaku Takeda Biography (4)” by Tokimune Takeda

The article below has been selected from the extensive archives of the Online Aikido Journal. We believe that an informed readership with knowledge of the history, techniques and philosophy of aikido is essential to the growth of the art and its adherence to the principles espoused by Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba.

The invading army surrounding the Wakamatsu Castle numbered 20,000 soldiers with over one hundred cannons against only 3,000 Aizu soldiers. Heavy fighting began raging throughout the castle town starting on August 23, 1868. The Aizu defended themselves desperately even advancing to inflict defeats on the enemy. The battle at Suwaguchi was particularly violent. The soldiers of the Choshu, Hikone and Bizen clans fired cannonball volleys from the mound at the entrance of Yutsuji Temple. The Aizu soldiers built a mound at Suwaguchi to fight to the end. Also, other strong Aizu forces sallied forth from the castle to fight. Although they repeatedly engaged in desperate struggles to maintain their position, an attack from the flank by Choshu soldiers of the western army defeated the besieged Aizu army.

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