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The Treaty of Portsmouth
Treaty of Portsmouth
formally ended the 1904–05 Russo-Japanese War. It was signed on September 5, 1905[1] after negotiations lasting from August 6 to August 30, at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard
Portsmouth Naval Shipyard
in Kittery, Maine, United States. U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore Roosevelt
was instrumental in the negotiations, and won the Nobel Peace Prize
Nobel Peace Prize
for his efforts.

Contents

1 Background 2 Portsmouth Peace Conference 3 Effects 4 Commemoration 5 Notes 6 References 7 External links

Background[edit] The war of 1904–05 was fought between the Empire of Russia, an international power with one of the largest armies in the world, and the Empire of Japan, a nation which had only recently industrialized after two-and-a-half centuries of isolation. A series of battles in the Liaodong Peninsula
Liaodong Peninsula
had resulted in Russian armies being driven from southern Manchuria, and the Battle of Tsushima
Battle of Tsushima
had resulted in a cataclysm for the Imperial Russian Navy. The war was unpopular with the Russian public, and the Russian government was under increasing threat of revolution at home. On the other hand, the Japanese economy was severely strained by the war, with rapidly mounting foreign debts, and its forces in Manchuria
Manchuria
faced the problem of ever-extending supply lines. No Russian territory had been seized, and the Russians continued to build up reinforcements via the Trans-Siberian Railway. Recognizing that a long-term war was not to Japan's advantage, as early as July 1904 the Japanese government had begun seeking out intermediaries to assist in bringing the war to a negotiated conclusion.[2] The intermediary approached by the Japanese side was the United States President Theodore Roosevelt, who had publicly expressed a pro-Japanese stance at the beginning of the war. However, as the war progressed, Roosevelt had begun to show concerns on the strengthening military power of Japan and its impact on long-term United States interests in Asia. In February 1905, Roosevelt sent messages to the Russian government via the US ambassador to St Petersburg. Initially, the Russians were unresponsive, with Tsar Nicholas II still adamant that Russia would prove victorious in time. At this point, the Japanese government was also lukewarm to a peace treaty, as Japanese armies were enjoying an unbroken string of victories. However, after the Battle of Mukden, which was extremely costly to both sides in terms of manpower and resources, Japanese Foreign Minister Komura Jutarō judged that the time was now critical for Japan to push for a settlement.[2] On March 8, 1905, Japanese Army Minister Terauchi Masatake
Terauchi Masatake
met with the American minister to Japan, Lloyd Griscom, to convey word to Roosevelt that Japan was ready to negotiate. However, from the Russian side, a positive response did not come until after the loss of the Russian fleet at the Battle of Tsushima. Two days after the battle, Tsar Nicholas II met with his grand dukes and military leadership and agreed to discuss peace. On June 7, 1905, Roosevelt met with Kaneko Kentarō, a Japanese diplomat, and on June 8 received a positive reply from Russia. Roosevelt chose Portsmouth, New Hampshire, as the site for the negotiations, primarily because the talks were to begin in August, and the cooler climate in Portsmouth would avoid subjecting the parties to the sweltering Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
summer.[2] Portsmouth Peace Conference[edit] The Japanese delegation to the Portsmouth Peace Conference was led by Foreign Minister Komura Jutarō, assisted by ambassador to Washington Takahira Kogorō. The Russian delegation was led by former Finance Minister Sergei Witte, assisted by former ambassador to Japan Roman Rosen and international law and arbitration specialist Friedrich Martens.[3] The delegations arrived in Portsmouth on August 8 and stayed in New Castle, New Hampshire, at the Hotel Wentworth (where the armistice was signed), and were ferried across the Piscataqua River each day to the naval base in Kittery, Maine, where the negotiations were held. The negotiations took place at the General Stores Building (now Building 86). Mahogany
Mahogany
furniture patterned after the Cabinet Room of the White House
White House
was ordered from Washington. Before the negotiations began Tsar Nicholas had adopted a hard line, forbidding his delegates to agree to any territorial concessions, reparations, or limitations on the deployment of Russian forces in the Far East.[2] The Japanese initially demanded recognition of their interests in Korea, the removal of all Russian forces from Manchuria, and substantial reparations. They also wanted confirmation of their control of Sakhalin, which Japanese forces had seized in July 1905, partly for use as a bargaining chip in the negotiations.[2] A total of twelve sessions were held between August 9 and August 30. During the first eight sessions, the delegates were able to reach an agreement on eight points. These included an immediate cease fire, recognition of Japan's claims to Korea, and the evacuation of Russian forces from Manchuria. Russia was also required to return its leases in southern Manchuria
Manchuria
(containing Port Arthur and Talien) to China, and to turn over the South Manchuria
Manchuria
Railway and its mining concessions to Japan. Russia was allowed to retain the Chinese Eastern Railway in northern Manchuria.[2] The remaining four sessions addressed the most difficult issues, those of reparations and territorial concessions. On August 18, Roosevelt proposed that Rosen offer to divide the island of Sakhalin
Sakhalin
to address the territory issue. On August 23, however, Witte proposed that the Japanese keep Sakhalin
Sakhalin
and drop their claims for reparations. When Komura rejected this proposal, Witte warned that he was instructed to cease negotiations and that the war would resume. This ultimatum came as four new Russian divisions arrived in Manchuria, and the Russian delegation made an ostentatious show of packing their bags and preparing to depart.[3] Witte was convinced that the Japanese could not afford to restart the war, and applied pressure via the American media and his American hosts[3] to convince the Japanese that monetary compensation was something that Russia would never compromise on.[4] Outmaneuvered by Witte, Komura yielded, and in exchange for the southern half of Sakhalin
Sakhalin
the Japanese dropped their claims for reparations.[2] The Treaty of Portsmouth
Treaty of Portsmouth
was signed on September 5. The treaty was ratified by the Japanese Privy Council on October 10,[5] and in Russia on October 14, 1905. Effects[edit] The signing of the treaty settled immediate difficulties in the Far East and created three decades of peace between the two nations. The treaty confirmed Japan's emergence as the pre-eminent power in East Asia, and forced Russia to abandon its expansionist policies there, but it was not well received by the Japanese people.[6] The Japanese public was aware of their country's unbroken string of military victories over the Russians, but was less aware of the precarious overextension of military and economic power these victories had required. News of the terms of the treaty appeared to show Japanese weakness in front of the European powers, and this frustration caused the Hibiya riots, and the collapse of Katsura Tarō's cabinet on January 7, 1906.[2] Because of the role played by President Theodore Roosevelt, the United States became a significant force in world diplomacy. Roosevelt was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
Nobel Peace Prize
in 1906 for his back channel efforts before and during the peace negotiations, even though he never actually went to Portsmouth.

Treaty Building in 1912

Envoy reception

Key to envoy reception

Hotel Wentworth, c. 1906

Commemoration[edit]

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Ratification of the Peace Treaty between Japan and Russia, November 25, 1905

In 1994, the Portsmouth Peace Treaty Forum was created by the Japan-America Society of New Hampshire to commemorate the Portsmouth Peace Treaty with the first formal meeting between Japanese and Russian scholars and diplomats in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, since the negotiation of the Portsmouth Peace Treaty in 1905. As the Treaty of Portsmouth is considered one of the most powerful symbols of peace in the Northern Pacific region and the most significant, shared peace history for Japan, Russia and the United States, the Forum was designed to explore from the Japanese, Russian and American perspectives, the history of the Portsmouth Peace Treaty and its relevance to current issues involving the Northern Pacific region. The Forum is intended to focus modern scholarship on international problems in the "spirit of the Portsmouth Peace Treaty". Notes[edit]

^ "Text of Treaty; Signed by the Emperor of Japan and Czar of Russia", The New York Times. October 17, 1905. ^ a b c d e f g h Kowner, Historical Dictionary of the Russo-Japanese War, p. 300-304. ^ a b c Jukes, The Russo-Japanese War
Russo-Japanese War
1904–1905, p. 86-90. ^ White, J. A.: "Portsmouth 1905: Peace or Truce?", Journal of Peace Research, 6(4):362 ^ Partial record of Privy Council meeting to ratify the treaty (from the National Archives of Japan) ^ "Japan's Present Crisis and Her Constitution; The Mikado's Ministers Will Be Held Responsible by the People for the Peace Treaty – Marquis Ito May Be Able to Save Baron Komura," New York Times. September 3, 1905.

References[edit]

Davis, Richard Harding, and Alfred Thayer Mahan. (1905). The Russo-Japanese war; a photographic and descriptive review of the great conflict in the Far East, gathered from the reports, records, cable despatches, photographs, etc., etc., of Collier's war correspondents New York: P. F. Collier & Son. OCLC: 21581015 De Martens, F, (1905). "The Portsmouth Peace Conference", The North American Review, 181 (558). Doleac, Charles B. (2006) An Uncommon Commitment to Peace: Portsmouth Peace Treaty 1905 Harcave, Sidney. (2004) Count Sergei Witte
Sergei Witte
and the Twilight of Imperial Russia: A Biography. Armonk, New York: M.E. Sharpe. ISBN 978-0-7656-1422-3 (cloth) ______________. (1990). The Memoirs of Count Witte (translator, Sidney Harcave). Armonk, New York: M.E. Sharpe. ISBN 978-0-87332-571-4 (cloth) Geoffrey Jukes, (2002) The Russo-Japanese War
Russo-Japanese War
1904–1905. Oxford: Osprey Publishing. ISBN 978-1-84176-446-7 (paper) Kowner, Rotem (2006). Historical Dictionary of the Russo-Japanese War. The Scarecrow Press. ISBN 0-8108-4927-5.  Kokovtsov, Vladimir. (1935). Out of My Past (translator, Laura Matveev). Stanford: Stanford University Press. Korostovetz, J. J. (1920). Pre-War Diplomacy The Russo-Japanese Problem. London: British Periodicals Limited. Matsumura, Masayoshi (1987). Nichi-Ro senso to Kaneko Kentaro: Koho gaiko no kenkyu. Shinyudo. ISBN 4-88033-010-8, translated by Ian Ruxton as Baron Kaneko and the Russo-Japanese War: A Study in the Public Diplomacy of Japan (2009) ISBN 978-0-557-11751-2 Preview Trani, Eugene P. (1969). The Treaty of Portsmouth; An Adventure in American Diplomacy. Lexington: University of Kentucky Press. Randall, Peter. (1985, 2002) There Are No Victors Here: A Local Perspective on the Treaty of Portsmouth
Treaty of Portsmouth
Portsmouth Marine Society. White, J. A.(1969): "Portsmouth 1905: Peace or Truce?", Journal of Peace Research, 6(4). Witte, Sergei. (1921). The Memoirs of Count Witte (translator, Abraham Yarmolinsky). New York: Doubleday

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Treaty of Portsmouth.

Wikisource
Wikisource
has original text related to this article: Treaty of Portsmouth

(in French) Text of the treaty, in French The Treaty of Portsmouth, 1905, Russo-Japanese War
Russo-Japanese War
(actual text) Portsmouth Peace Treaty website of the Japan-America Society of New Hampshire The Museum Meiji Mura Imperial rescript endorsing the treaty of Portsmouth (from the National Archives of Japan)

v t e

Treaties of Japan

Bakumatsu
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Japan-US Treaty of Peace and Amity (1854) Anglo-Japanese Friendship Treaty (1854) Treaty of Commerce and Navigation between Japan and Russia (1855) Dutch-Japan Treaty of Peace and Amity (1856) (ja) Japan-US Additional Treaty (1857) Japan-Netherlands Additional Treaty (1857) (ja) Japan-Russia Additional Treaty (1857) Treaty of Amity and Commerce ( United States
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– Japan) (1858) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between the Netherlands and Japan (1858) (ja) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between Russia and Japan (1858) Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Amity and Commerce
Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Amity and Commerce
(1858) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between France and Japan
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(1945)

During Cold War (1945–89)

Security Treaty between the United States
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Korea
Treaty (1965) Ogasawara Reversion Agreement (1968) Okinawa Reversion Agreement (1971) Japan–China Joint Communiqué (1972) Japan–North Vietnam Agreement (1973) Japan–China Trade Agreement (1974) Basic Treaty between Japan and Australia (1976) Sino–Japanese Peace and Friendship Treaty (1978)

v t e

Theodore Roosevelt

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GND: 76306

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