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Kurogami
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Any military strategists out there (Nate?) who can help fill in some information about the Aizu campaign at the end of the Boshin War?

The impetus for this research is I am writing a short historical fiction (seriously short, social fiction written for a phone app) set during that time. I don't need a ton of details; however I want to put characters in the right place at the right time, and also offer name references that help establish timeline and/or location. Finding the right detail lets me maximize information delivery using a minimal character count. If that makes sense?

I am particularly interested in the breach of Bonari Pass (母成峠の戦い), battle at Tonoguchihara ( 戸ノ口原の戦い) that ended with the Byakkotai suicides, and siege/surrender of Aizu/Tsurugao Castle (会津城籠城戦). Also, how far to the northeast Takamori Saigo Taichou (Satsuma) did manage to get? I think it was Hillsborough's book that described him preparing for the campaign but getting delayed in Kagoshima due to illness. Did Omura Masajiro Taichou (Choshuu) participate in the Aizu campaign? It would great to learn the composition of the pro-Imperial troops involved, han藩, ie家, or kuni国? Or I could figure it out from the names of commanders.

Totally awesome would be time markers for assaults/actions/events I could add to my reference timeline. For example--(dawn, 5/15, Keio 4/aka July 4, 1868), Battle of Ueno begins at Kuromon Gate, Kaneiji Temple, Takamori Saigo (Satsuma), Omura Masajiro (Choshuu), Iba Hachiro (Shogitai), (Shinsengumi).

Here's the Aizu timeline I have assembled thus far using Lunar calendar dates:
(time?, 4/25-5/1), Battle of Shirakawa 白河口の戦い
(evening, 4/25-5/1) Destruction of Komine Castle 小峰城
(time?, 7/29), Battle of Nihonmatsu Castle 二本松の戦い
(morning, 8/21) Battle of Bonari Pass 母成峠の戦い, Imperial forces break through
(8/23), Siege of Aizu Castle 会津城籠城戦 begins
(time?, 8/23), Imperial loyalist forces arrive in Wakamatsu, mass suicide by hanshi families
(time?, 8/23), Battle of Tonoguchihara 戸ノ口原の戦い / Tragedy of the Byakkotai
(time?, 8/26) Yamakura Okura unit returns to Aizu Castle
(time?, 8/28) Yonezawa han surrenders, Imperial reinforcements begin arriving
(time?, 9/14) Imperial troops begin all-out attack
(time?, 9/22), Surrender of Aizu Wakamatsu Castle

Would it be too much to ask for a map showing the roads from Edo to Aizu? I have discerned a couple possibilities for getting my characters, as well as pro-Imperial troops to Aizu:
1) Oshuu Kaido to Shirakawa, then a connector road (name?) to Aizu. Would they stay on the southwestern side of the Lake Inawashiro? Or go around the northeastern side? For example, both Nihonmatsu and Bonari Pass are located northeast of Lake Inawashiro.
....or....
2) Oshuu Kaido to Utsunomiya, then the Nikko Kaido to Imaichi Nikko, then the Aizu Nishi Kaido to Ouchi Juku, then for the last dozen or so kilometers to Aizu use a connector road (name?).

At any rate, I'm heading to the library to pick up "The Meiji restoration" by W.G. Beasley, among others, and hope to get some answers. I can muddle through a Japanese website that isn't too technically dense using translation tools, でも、日本語をあんまり読めません。お願いいたします!

P.S.--I just heard on the podcast, Nate mentioned Conlan's book, "Weapons & Fighting Techniques of the Samurai Warrior 1200-1877 AD." Anyone know if it includes information on the Aizu campaign?

Whew, that was long... :D
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