Sakura: Cherry Blossoms as Living Symbols of Friendship
Letter from Yei Theodora Ozaki to Mrs. William Howard Taft
225, Shinagawa, Tokio.
Feb. 26th 1911 [sic, 1912]
My dear Mrs Taft,
on the 14th of February by the “Awa Maru” via San Franco my husband shipped off 3000 cherry trees which he hopes will form an avenue in Washington as a
memorial of national friendship between the U.S. and Japan. As you may remember the first cherry trees sent by the Tokyo Municipality were destroyed on reaching their destination as they were found to be infected by some insect. I specially ask your kind attention to these second trees as my husband has had them grown in specially prepared and disinfected soil to prevent a like misfortune befalling them. We hope to hear of their blooming in the salubrious Washington climate reminding you all of Japan’s faithful devotion and admiration for her old friend and tutor, America.
We watch the President’s career with the deepest interest and never forget your kindness and the memorable evening we spent at the White House.
You may be interested to hear that a second daughter was born to me Jan. 26th and since we have both done well.
You were so kind as to promise to send us the President’s and your own photograph. We would be highly honoured if you will be as good as your gracious word.
Please forgive me for trespassing on your valuable time and may I ask you to present our highest esteem and kindest regards to the President and believe me,
Yours ever Sincerely,
Yei Theodora Ozaki,
p.s. If there is ever anything I can do for you in Japan, please command me. Y.T.O.