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The U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet Band, conducted by Chief Petty Officer Jimmie Blount, enlivened the atmosphere of the 125th anniversary of 18th U.S. president Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's visit to Japan in 1879. The ceremony took place at Ueno Park in Tokyo where a commemorative monument of Grant was erected in 1929.
The U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet Band, conducted by Chief Petty Officer Jimmie Blount, enlivened the atmosphere of the 125th anniversary of 18th U.S. president Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's visit to Japan in 1879. The ceremony took place at Ueno Park in Tokyo where a commemorative monument of Grant was erected in 1929. (Hiroshi Chida / S&S)
The U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet Band, conducted by Chief Petty Officer Jimmie Blount, enlivened the atmosphere of the 125th anniversary of 18th U.S. president Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's visit to Japan in 1879. The ceremony took place at Ueno Park in Tokyo where a commemorative monument of Grant was erected in 1929.
The U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet Band, conducted by Chief Petty Officer Jimmie Blount, enlivened the atmosphere of the 125th anniversary of 18th U.S. president Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's visit to Japan in 1879. The ceremony took place at Ueno Park in Tokyo where a commemorative monument of Grant was erected in 1929. (Hiroshi Chida / S&S)
U.S. and Japanese officials gathered at Tokyo’s Ueno Park on Friday for a commemoration ceremony marking the 125th anniversary of U.S. president Ulysses S. Grant's visit to Japan. Attendees included Mark J. Davidson, U.S. Embassy Cultural Affairs Officer (front center), Embassy military attache Capt. Frank M. Buerger (right of Davidson), Sharon Esty of Barrie School, Md. (left to Davidson). Behind Davidson are students of the Barrie School and the members of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet Band.
U.S. and Japanese officials gathered at Tokyo’s Ueno Park on Friday for a commemoration ceremony marking the 125th anniversary of U.S. president Ulysses S. Grant's visit to Japan. Attendees included Mark J. Davidson, U.S. Embassy Cultural Affairs Officer (front center), Embassy military attache Capt. Frank M. Buerger (right of Davidson), Sharon Esty of Barrie School, Md. (left to Davidson). Behind Davidson are students of the Barrie School and the members of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet Band. (Hiroshi Chida / S&S)
Sharon Esty, 17, of Maryland's Barrie School — which is in Japan on a visit program — presents remarks Friday on behalf of the school’s 14 students and 2 teachers.
Sharon Esty, 17, of Maryland's Barrie School — which is in Japan on a visit program — presents remarks Friday on behalf of the school’s 14 students and 2 teachers. (Hiroshi Chida / S&S)
Mark J. Davidson, the Cultural Affairs Officer for the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, reads a message from U.S. Ambassador to Japan Howard H. Baker, at a commemoration ceremony of the 125th anniversary of 18th American President Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's visit in Japan on Friday.
Mark J. Davidson, the Cultural Affairs Officer for the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, reads a message from U.S. Ambassador to Japan Howard H. Baker, at a commemoration ceremony of the 125th anniversary of 18th American President Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's visit in Japan on Friday. (Hiroshi Chida / S&S)
Mark J. Davidson, the Cultural Affairs Officer for the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, offers a bouquet to the monument of Gen. Ulysses S. Grant at Tokyo’s Ueno Park on Friday.
Mark J. Davidson, the Cultural Affairs Officer for the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, offers a bouquet to the monument of Gen. Ulysses S. Grant at Tokyo’s Ueno Park on Friday. (Hiroshi Chida / S&S)

U.S. and Japanese officials joined the Navy’s 7th Fleet Band in Tokyo on Friday to commemorate the 125th anniversary of former President Ulysses S. Grant’s visit to Japan.

Mark J. Davidson, the U.S. Embassy cultural affairs officer, read a message from Ambassador Howard Baker Jr. at the Ueno Park event. He was joined by embassy military attaché Navy Capt. Frank M. Buerger, 14 students and two teachers from the Barrie School in Maryland, and Akiko Kuno, of the America-Japan Society.

“Today, as we commemorate the 125th anniversary of the Grant visit and celebrate 150 years of bilateral relations, high-level visits by our governmental leaders are a regular and vital part of our special partnership,” said Davidson on behalf of Baker. “But even more important are the strong ties of friendship between individual Japanese and Americans.”

The 1879 visit by Grant and his wife was the first visit to Japan by a former foreign head of state, Davidson read from Baker’s message, and “an important milestone in the development of our bilateral relationship.”

During their visit, the Grants planted trees as part of a ceremony in Ueno Park. The trees still stand today.

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