Makino Gonrokuro (牧野権六郎)

Gonrokuro MAKINO (September 20, 1819 - August 5, 1869) was a feudal retainer of Okayama in Bizen Province and patriot of Sonno Joi (advocating reverence for the Emperor and the expulsion of foreigners) in the end of Edo period. His childhood name was Kozaburo and another name was Seiken.

His forefather was Nobushige MAKINO in Mikawa Province (the lord of Imabashi-jo Castle). Uemon MAKINO, Nobushige's grandson, was summoned by Terumasa IKEDA and this is the history of his ancestor's serving for the Ikeda family.

In December 14, 1853, the Edo bakufu (Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun) ordered Okayama Domain to guard Boso ('Hojo' [Hojo, Tateyama City, Chiba Prefecture] and 'Takegaoka' [Kagamigaura and Yawata, Tateyama City, Chiba Prefecture], which continued until July 1858) due to the arrival of the Black Ships, and thereby Gonrokuro moved from Okayama to the spot as the chief of staff, but he caused a mess such as making Boso Otsu-e (Otsu paintings, named after the town of Otsu in Shiga Prefecture) Song (a song of famous places and products) and holding a wild drinking party with soldiers every day, and even Tadazumi Igi, the commander in chief, indulged in a tea ceremony, and therefore, Tadatake KAGAWA, Igi's subordinate, submitted a petition of reformation in samurai (warrior) style (enforcement of official discipline) to Yoshimasa IKEDA.

In August 1862, Yoshimasa was requested by Tadaka ICHIJO, Sadaijin (Minister of the Left), to 'receive the order of Imperial court and procure the state affairs' through a secret agent and also received an 'Imperial order to procure and devote the country' from the Imperial Court in October 1862, but Yoshimasa was caught in the middle of the Sabaku-ha (supporters of the Shogun) and the sonjo (advocating reverence for the Emperor and the expulsion of foreigners) party, and moreover, could not move due to illness. Therefore, Gonrokuro who belonged to the sonjo party went up to Kyoto and started activities uniquely as an official to procure the state affairs together with Ichizen TOKURA (senior retainer), Ryuhei DOI (head clerk), Yoichiro ITO (head of the servants), Eima EMI (archer), etc., but it is said that Tadaka was outraged and said to 'have Yoshimasa retire' because his scheme to grasp the initiative in the Imperial Court suppressing Satsuma and Choshu domains by linking with the lord of Okayama Domain did not work well as he planned.

Later, Gonrokuro was active in Kyoto with Akimasa IKEDA as the representative, but it did not work well against Satsuma and Choshu of which lord of the domain himself stood in the front, so it was decided to have Yoshimasa retire, but Gonrokuro and Emi visited Tadaka ICHIJO for consultation because Teigoro IKEDA, Yoshimasa's son, was ingorant, and Tadaka said to 'select Mochimasa IKEDA in Mito Domain', and therefore, they submitted an opinion to the upper stratum to adopt Kuromaro.

In 1865, Gonrokuro recommended Kagenao MORISHITA to a magistrate of the county (Bicchu Province) and later made Kagenao his own right-hand man. In the same year, Gonrokuro, a shell-drum magistrate (Assistant Deputy General), proposed to Mochimasa IKEDA to dispatch Yoshimoto HANABUSA to Nagasaki for purchasing warships and weapons of the domain. After that, Torataro applied to study in Europe to the upper stratum of the domain, but not permitted, and therefore, Gonrokuro himself collected money secretly to the domain and sent him from Nagasaki to Europe in April 9, 1867.

In April 1866, Gonrokuro became Goyogakari (a general affairs official) of the miliary affairs of Okayama Domain. Mochimasa IKEDA who was recommended by the Sonjo-ha party became the lord of the domain on March 26, 1863, but gradually strayed and when Yoshinobu TOKUGAWA, his real older brother, became Seiitaishogun (great general), Mochimasa retired from the procurement work between the Shogunate and the Imperial Court, and after the incident that Atsunobu SHINJO, Hiromichi TSUDA, Shigemichi HIRAI, etc. in the procurement side of state affairs (Sonjo-ha) pressed Mochimasa to retire and threatened him by the sound of a cannon from Bansei Pass (Bansei, Okayama City) to the Okayama-jo Castle, Mochimasa ordered thier dismissal of the role and house arrest, but Gonrokuro mediated to release from the house arrest.

In the beginning of October 1867, Gonrokuro had a meeting with Tatewaki KOMATSU, Takachika FUKUOKA, Shojiro GOTO, Shoso TSUJI, Shozo TSUZUKI, etc. in Kyoto, and delivered a speech that 'the only thing we should do is to have Yoshinobu return Shogunship to the Imperial Court' and unified their intention to Taisei Hokan (transfer of power back to the Emperor). In November 8, he had an audience with Yoshinobu TOKUGAWA in the Nijo-jo Castle and proposed Taisei Hokan.

Gonrokuro once retired in July 1868, but resumed working and served as a military adviser of Okayama domain in August 1868, and became a secretary of precedence and councilor for Penal Code of the Okayama domain in 1869. Gonrokuro died in 1869. Died at the age of 51.