His father, Shimoda Nisaburō (下田仁三郎), participated in the "Kigyōsha" (起業社) organization from the Kanezawa han, which developed land to make it suitable for habitation.
After graduating from Hakodate Commercial High School (函館商業高等学校 Hakodate Shōgyō Kōtō Gakkō ), he worked as an officer in the army stationed in Japan.
In 1914, during the fall season training of the Seventh Division of the Army, he was asked by Lieutenant General Utsunomiya Tarō (宇都宮太郎), to set up a youth organization.
In 1916, he founded the Hokkaido Iwanai Youth Organization (北海道岩内少年団 Hokkaidō Iwanai Shōnendan ).
In 1920, from July 30 to August 7, he participated in the First World Scout Jamboree, held in London. The other participants from Japan were Koshiba Hiroshi and Richard Suzuki. He also met Sir Robert Baden-Powell.
In 1921, he established the Nihon Kenjidan (日本健児団) ("Japan Stalwart Youth Troop"), and worked as Japan's first Chief Scout, using his own home as the organization's international office.
In 1964, the Japanese Scout Association awarded him the title of Senior Scout (先達 sendatsu ).
- The tale of Shimoda Toyomatsu - the unnamed first Chief Scout (下田豊松物語 - 無名の初代チーフスカウト Shimoda Toyomatsu Monogatari - Mumei no Shodai Chief Scout ) (Kuniichi Komachi, Kuni Scouting Library)
Much of this information in this article was translated from the equivalent article in the Japanese Wikipedia, as referenced on October 28, 2006
|Chief Scouts of the Scout Association of Japan