THE NEW YORK TIMES  1922

JOKICHI TAKAMINE, NOTED CHEMIST, DIES

 

Japanese Who Discovered Adrenalin and Takadiastase Had Been Ill Two Years.

 

FOUNDED THE NIPPON CLUB

 

He Was Widely Known for His Work for Friendly Relations Between

Japan and United States.

 

Dr. Jokichi Takamine, the chemist, and perhaps the best-known Japanese in this country, died yesterday at the Lenox Hill Hospital, where he had been ill for several weeks of heart disease.  His illness dated back two years, and he had almost regained his health when his activities in welcoming the delegates of the Japanese Business Menfs Mission, Baron Shibusawafs party, and the Japanese delegates to the Disarmament Conference brought on a recurrence of his illness.  He was forced to take to his bed on Dec. 16.1921, and never again regained his strength.

With Dr. Takamine at the time of his death were his wife, his two sons, Eben T. and Jokichi, with their wives, and his sister, Mrs. J. Takehashi.  A few intimate friends were also at the bedside.

The body was taken to Dr. Takaminefs home in Passaic, where it will remain until Monday afternoon.  It will then be taken to the Nippon Club, in West Ninety-third Street, where a memorial service will be held at 6 ofclock Monday evening.  On Tuesday the body will be taken to St. Patrickfs Cathedral, where the funeral services will be held at 10:30 ofclock.  Burial will be in Woodlawn Cemetery.

 

Born in Japan In 1854.

Dr. Takamine was widely known in the United States and Japan for his work for better relations between the two countries and his achievements in chemistry.  He was born Nov. 3. 1854. at Kanazawa City in Kaga Province, Japan, the first son of Sei-Ichi and Yuki Takamine and a samurai of the Kanazawa clan.  His father was a physician to the Prince of Kaga.  When 12 years old he went to Nagasaki to study under the Portuguese Consul, and later went to Osaka to study medicine.  He was one of the first graduates of the Imperial University of Japan at Tokyo, taking his degree in Engineering and Chemistry.  He then went as a Government student to the University of Glasgow and the Andersonian University of Glasgow, where he spent three years.

On his return to Japan Dr. Takamine was appointed Chemist of the Department of Agriculture and Commercial, where he did much to improve the brewing of sake and the making of indigo.  The quick applicability of his inventions to commercial uses was always a market feature of his work.  His appointment as Japanese Commissioner to the Cotton Centennial Worldfs Fair at New Orleans in 1884 was the turning point of his life, for there he met Miss. Caroline Hitch, whom he married, and resolved to spend the rest of his life in the United States.

 

Has Two Greatest Discoveries.

He went to Tokyo in 1857 to erect the first superphosphate works in Japan, and his two sons, Jokichi and Eben, were born there.  He returned to America in 1890, and began his research work which brought him recognition as a commercial chemist.  His two greatest discoveries were adrenalin and takadiastase.  He discovered adrenalin in 1900 through experiments with the glands of sheep.  It is now manufactured from bovine glands, and is used by surgeons throughout the world to raise blood pressure, which is accomplished through the contraction of the small arteries.  It has made possible bloodless surgery in minor operations, especially on the eye, ear and throat.  He was honored for his discovery by surgeons all over the world.

Dr. Takamine discovered takadiastase in 1894.  It is obtained from a fungus growth, mainly on the rice plant, known as aspergillus oryzoe, and is largely used in the fermentation of sake, or rice beer, in Japan.  It is also used by physicians for starch digestion and is today a remedy known to all druggists.

A company was formed in Chicago for the manufacture of this product and it soon became very profitable.  In the meantime he introduced many useful industries into Japan, among which were soda, works, fertilizer works, dye, alkali and aluminum, and was also the founder of a large pharmaceutical corporation.  He established a chemical and physical research laboratory at Tokyo and on his return here set up a laboratory of his own at Clifton. N. J.

 

 

Decorated by Japanese Emperor.

Dr. Takamine was made Doctor of Chemical Engineering in the University of Japan and Doctor of Pharmacology in 1906.  He was decorated by the Japanese Emperor with the Fourth Order of the Rising Sun in 1915, having been appointed member of the Royal Academy of Science by the Emperor in 1918.  He was President of Sankyo. &. Co. Ltd., Tokyo;  Talamine Ferment Company, International Takamine Ferment Company, Takamine Laboratory, Inc., and Takamine, Incorporated.

He founded the Nippon Club of New York, the Japan-America Society, the Chemical and Physical Research Society of Japan and was prominent among the founders of the Japan Society of New York and the Japanese Association of New York Athletic.  Merriewold, Bankers and Nippon Clubs, the American Chemical Society, Royal Chemical Society of England, Institute of Chemical Engineers and the Franklin Institute.

 

J. I. C. Clarkefs Tribute.

A tribute to Dr. Takamine was paid yesterday by his friend J.I.C. Clarke, who had known him for many years, and said: gApart from his devotion to science, it was his dearest wish to promote abiding and enduring friendship between the land of his birth and that of his adoption.  In the field of the chemistry of life he had created powerful corporations to develop and apply his valuable inventions and discoveries, always keeping before him big cherished ideal of a union between Japan and the United States based on a common economic interest and mutual esteem.  In his pursuit of this ideal he incessantly worked with tireless zeal and grim determination, giving most unstintedly, and was rightly spoken of as an uncrowned Ambassador of Good-Will between the two nations, An intense lover of Japan, its ancient art, its domestic virtues, its rich traditions, he became an equally ardent lover of the United States, its high ideals, its balanced freedom.h

Dr. Takamine had a unique country home at Merriewold Park, Sullivan County, N. Y.  He purchased two of the Japanese buildings at the St. Louis Exposition, combined them under one roof and adapted them to American life, surrounding them with a wealth of Japanese designs and gardens.  His friends were frequently entertained there.

 

 

 

 

DR. TAKAMINE.

 

The year of Dr. TAKAMINEfS birth in Japan was the very year in which Commodore PERRY negotiated the treaty with Japan opening that country to foreign commerce and residence.  Thus, the life of this world-famous chemist, the best known and most highly respected of all the Japanese in America, spans the entire period of Japanfs new relations with our country and with Europe.  His contributions to pure science, and especially to the health of both Eastern and Western nations, are among the first notable fruits of that intercourse.  While Japan has reason to be proud of the great service of this samurai of an ancient clan to the modern world, America may rightfully lay claim to a share of the credit for his achievement.  The United States opened the doors of Japan, and then opened her own doors of opportunity to his genius.

In his own person and through the organizations which he founded or fostered Dr. TAKAMINE has done perhaps more than any one else of his race in this country to bring the two peoples into better understanding.  It will be especially remembered that his last public service, given at the peril of his health, was in support of the purposes of the Disarmament Conference at Washington.  His distinguished guest, Baron SHIBUSAWA, had as a young samurai guarded the person of our first Minister to Japan, TOWNSEND HARRIS, and so had helped to initiate that relationship of amity between the two nations which Dr. TAKAMINE, out of his love for the two lands, was to the very end zealously active in strengthening.  He had discarded the two swords of the samurai for these two devotions.