Japanese Delegation Honors CCNY Founder Townsend Harris

July 10, 2013 | City College

Shimoda Mayor Shunsuke Kusuyama will lead a 13-member delegation from that city to The City College of New York July 17 to honor City

CCNY Archivist Professor Sydney Van Nort exchanges gifts with a visiting Shimoda city government official in 2011.

College founder Townsend Harris.

The delegation, comprising civic officials, students and citizens of Shimoda, will be the 27th since 1986 to visit CCNY to pay homage to Harris, who founded what was known as The Free Academy in 1847 and later opened the first U.S. consulate in Japan. Because Harris was instrumental in opening trade between Japan and the West, he is revered there.

The group will visit the Cohen Library Archives in the North Academic Center building to examine its collection of Townsend Harris memorabilia. Among the items on display in the archives are the American flag that Harris flew in Japan, his diplomatic pouch, a volume from his journals and his diplomatic passport.

While in New York, they will also visit Brooklyn’s Green-Wood Cemetery, where Harris is buried. Then they will travel to Newport, R.I. to attend the Black Ships Festival. The festival is named for the kurofune, or black ships, that Commodore Matthew C. Perry anchored in Yedo Bay (now Tokyo Bay) in July 1853.

About The City College of New York
Since 1847, The City College of New York has provided low-cost, high-quality education for New Yorkers in a wide variety of disciplines. More than 16,000 students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in: the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; the Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture; the School of Education; the Grove School of Engineering, the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education, and the Colin L. Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership.

Set on a striking, 35-acre hilltop campus in upper Manhattan, CCNY has produced more Nobel laureates than any other public institution in the United States. The College has been touted as one of the Best Colleges in the United States as well as one of the Best Value Colleges by the Princeton Review, and ranks among U.S. News’ top regional universities.

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