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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Ranald MacDonald: Astoria is full of surprises

Near where I took yesterday's photo at Fort Astoria stands a monument to a colorful and internationally-historic character. He has the unlikely name (from today's perspective) of Ranald MacDonald. Don't immediately start thinking of cheap hamburgers and supersized fries. If you click on this image, you'll see that the plaque is in Japanese. The English-language "verso" is below, with a less picturesque backdrop. Amusingly, the backdrop of this image gives an optical illusion, as one blockhouse replica of Fort Astoria is made of real wood, and the other is painted on the back of the Fort George building. The big wooden sign tells the history of Fort Astoria.

Ranald was not only a colorful character, but an important one. You can click on the image to read the plaque. There are also descriptions of his life on this web page and in Wikipedia. On the lower right of the Wikipedia page, you'll see a portrait monument to Ranald in Nagasaki.

As I took the photo, I wondered if fellow City Daily Photo blogger, Nori, would be the only viewer of this post who could read the plaque in both languages.


Stine in Ontario said...

That was a very brave thing to do! He deserves to be remembered.

Nori said...

Very, very interesting!
According to Japan's Wikipedia, he could return to his country (the U.S) after being arrested for 4 years in Japan in spite of Japan's national isolation policy.
It was also amazing!

I really wish to visit there someday!

Unseen Rajasthan said...

Beautiful,informative and peaceful !! Great

B SQUARED said...

An interesting person.

Vogon Poet said...

Brave and a bit crazy, what a life! I am glad he is honored and remembered for his very important accomplishments.

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