Manzo Nagano

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Manzo Nagano (永野 万蔵, Nagano Manzō, 1855–1923) was the first Japanese person to officially immigrate to Canada.[1]


Manzo Nagano emigrated from Japan to Canada in 1877, arriving in New Westminster, British Columbia. He became a salmon fisherman working in the Fraser River and later moved to Vancouver to load timber onto ships. He returned to Japan briefly in 1884, then moved to the American city of Seattle, Washington, to open a tobacco and restaurant business. He returned to Canada in 1892 to open a hotel and store, amongst other businesses. He lost all his possessions in a fire in 1922 and moved back to Japan, where he died a year later.

The Canadian Mount Manzo Nagano, near Owikeno Lake, BC, was named in his honour.

The figure skater Keegan Messing is his great-great-grandson.[2]



  • Mori, Kenzo and Hiroto Takami. (1977). Kanada no Manzo Monogatari: The First Immigrant to Canada. Tokyo: Suzuyama Shobo.

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