1860 Japanese Embassy Medal

Washington, D.C. 1860

In the 1850s, after more than 200 years of self-imposed isolation, Japan opened up to trade dialogues with the United States and western Europe. The first Japanese delegation to the United States arrived in Washington, D.C. in 1860. They delivered a trade agreement, negotiated by Commodore Matthew Perry, which opened select Japanese ports to American trade. The Japanese diplomats met with Secretary of State Lewis Cass and President James Buchanan, whom they presented with lavish gifts of state. In return, Secretary of State Cass gave them commemorative medals featuring the President’s likeness—made of gold, silver, or bronze, depending on the recipient’s status. This example is one made of silver, and includes its original presentation box.

  • Source/Credit: Transfer from the Office of the Historian, Department of State
  • Catalog Number: 2011.0003.05
  • Created: 1860
  • Acquired: 2011

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MLA Format

1860 Japanese Embassy Medal. 1860. National Museum of American Diplomacy, https://diplomacy.state.gov/items/1860-japanese-embassy-medal

Chicago Format

1860 Japanese Embassy Medal, 1860, National Museum of American Diplomacy, Washington, DC, https://diplomacy.state.gov/items/1860-japanese-embassy-medal

APA Format

(1860). 1860 Japanese Embassy Medal [Object]. National Museum of American Diplomacy, Washington, D.C., United States. https://diplomacy.state.gov/items/1860-japanese-embassy-medal

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