The Netherlands – Japan > 1823: The increasing influence of the Dutch in Japan

In 1823, the physician Philipp Franz von Siebold (1796 - 1866) arrived on Deshima to become the trading post’s doctor and take care of the VOC employees’ health. But this was not enough to satisfy him. With the authorization of the Japanese authorities, Von Siebold began a medical school and established a hospital on the mainland. Through his work, he gained much influence on the Japanese health care. Von Siebold’s initiatives paved the way for later physicians such as Johannes L.C. Pompe van Meerdervoort Esq. and Toon Bauduin.

Prince Fizen on Gedeh

In other areas too, the Dutch helped develop modern Japan. Hendrik Hardes built a steam engine factory in Nagasaki. Naval officer Gerhardus Fabius developed a program for training Japanese naval officers. Many of his pupils made a career for themselves and were later to visit the Netherlands.
The Dutch government presented Japan with the paddle steamer Soembin. This gift had the desired result: the Japanese placed orders for a number of steamboats with Dutch shipyards.

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