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William Smith Clark

1826-1886. American agriculturalist. President of Massachusetts Agricultural College, he came to the notice of Japanese government emissaries who invited him to establish a similar institution in their country. In July 1876 the dynamic Clark reached Sapporo, capital of Japan's newly colonized northern island, and within eight months set up a college, preparatory school, and experimental farm, introduced crops and trees, agricultural buildings and methods, and converted all sixteen students to Christianity. The young believers, exemplifying his parting words, “Boys, be ambitious,” won all the second class who also signed Clark's “Covenant of Believers in Jesus.” The zealous group became known as the Sapporo Band, whose most notable member was Kanzo Uchimura.*

See also Japan.

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