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Center Hospital > About Us > History > The “Phantom Hospital” appears

The “Phantom Hospital” appears
NCGM’s origin

  • After the Boshin War (1868–1869), the shoguns kept their soldiers stationed in the outer moat of Edo Castle, even after the transition from wartime to peacetime. In addition, an increasing number of residents of Tokyo started to demand healthcare. The NCGM has its origins in a provisional military hospital established for the sick and wounded inside the Yamashita Gate (Yamashita Gate provisional hospital) on October 1, 1868.
  • Yamashita Gate was located near the intersection of Miyuki-dori and the expressway behind the Imperial Hotel in present-day Ginza; however, today, the only traces of its existence can be found in the name of the Yamashita-bashi elevated bridge. The gate was built by Hosokawa Tadatoshi from Kumamoto Prefecture in 1636, and was said to be the smallest gate of the Edo Castle.
  • The Yamashita Gate provisional hospital was the army’s first core hospital, but it went through a series of name changes and there are no records of its existence, hence, the name “Phantom Hospital.”
  • This provisional hospital had been originally known as the Gunmukan (Bureau of Military Affairs) Treatment Center until Gunmukan was replaced by the Ministry of the Military in 1869, whereupon it became the Treatment Center of the Ministry of the Military. The Kutsuki house of the Fukuchiyama feudal estate of Uchiyamashita-chō provided the hospital with its daimyō’s mansion, located inside what is now Hibiya Park.
  • Its name was changed to Tokyo Garrison Provisional Hospital in 1871, and again to Second Provisional Hospital of the Army a year later. After the closing of the First Provisional Hospital inside Gokoku-ji temple, it was used to house beriberi patients. (Kurosawa Yoshiyuki, Journal of the Japanese Society for the History of Medicine., vol. 40)
  • After that, the army established a hospital in Kōjimachi at the suggestion of Matsumoto Ryōjun. The hospital was newly rebuilt on August 1, 1873 to inherit the work of its predecessor, and served as the army’s main hospital.