William Adams

Managing Real Estate Broker with Fathom Realty PB00068179

William Adams was born in Gillingham, Kent, England back in 1564. His father died when he was young so he went to work at a shipyard. He spent twelve years learning shipbuilding, astronomy and navigation before joining the Royal Navy.

He served under Sir Francis Drake seeing battle with the Spanish Armade in 1588 as master of the Richarde Dyffyde, a resupply ship. After the war, he became a pilot for the Barbary Company. In 1598, he set sail for the west coast of South America. In 1600, after 19 months at sea he arrived at the island of Kyusho, Japan. He helped the Japanese construct the Western-style ships. He died in Japan at 55.

What you may not know about William is that he was the first of his nation to reach Japan. After settling in Japan, he was the first ever Western samurai. He is regarded by the Japanese as one of the most influential foreigners in Japan during the time period. There is a statue of him in Nagisacho, Japan. There is so much more that he did during his time there. If you want to know more please look him up, fascinating reading

Until tomorrow give someone the free gift of a smile

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Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning James. Quite the feat for a westerner to become a samurai! Thanks for sharing. Enjoy your day!

Dec 16, 2018 04:17 AM #1
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

I wonder if this was the inspiration for the James Clavell book, Shogun.

Dec 16, 2018 04:45 AM #2
Raymond E. Camp
Howard Hanna Real Estate Services - Ontario, NY
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester

Good morning James,

An interesting man of his times.

Make yourself an astonishing day.

Dec 16, 2018 05:05 AM #3
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Hi James.  I am thinking the same as Joe.  Was this man the inspiration for the Shogun book?

Dec 16, 2018 05:46 AM #4
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning James Dray,

I see you've found another interesting and ambitious person of interest for us to learn about today. Thank you for another great history lesson.

Dec 16, 2018 06:02 AM #5
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning again James. What a terrific read this is today. So fascinating. Travel alone in those days was treacherous.

Dec 16, 2018 06:08 AM #6
Donald Urschalitz
Lubeck Realty Group - Jupiter, FL
P.A. Realtor ABR RSPS North Palm Beach County

Now that was a real accomplishment.

Dec 16, 2018 07:18 AM #7
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Somewhere in my memory I am familiar with this story.  And, I think a movie was made of that.  A

Dec 16, 2018 09:20 AM #8
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good afternoon James - thanks so much for that peice of history.

Dec 16, 2018 11:07 AM #9
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Wow, James- I can't imagine what it must have been like in those days being the only one who looked like you in a foreign country. 

Dec 16, 2018 11:16 AM #10
Kevin J. May
Florida Supreme Realty - Hobe Sound, FL
Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida

William Adams could attribute his success due to Yi Sun-sin (The Admiral). He essentially annihilated the Japanese fleet just prior to Adams' arrival to Japan. That story intrigues me also!  

Dec 16, 2018 03:37 PM #11
Bob "RealMan" Timm
Ward County Notary Services - Minot, ND
Owner of Ward Co. Notary Services, retired Realtor

I will read more James Dray , he certainly was/is a fascinating character.

Dec 17, 2018 07:27 AM #12
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

A fascinating story.  Is this the basis for the recent The Last Samurai or 47 Ronin?

Thanks as always James!

Jan 14, 2019 10:56 AM #13
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