To follow is a rough translation:
The report of inspection of Takeshima presented by the third fleet
commander, Rear Admiral Taketomi Kunikane on June 14th
1. I was ordered by the chief commander of the third fleet to give an architectural engineer from the Sasebo Naval Defense Office（鎮守府) a lift in our ship Hashidate as far as Takeshima and also to judge whether a plan of the temporal watchtower at the island is adequate or not. So we departed Takeshiki on the afternoon of the 12th. As soon as we arrived there at 2:00pm of the 13th, we sent the engineer to the island. At the same time I ordered the captain to send naval officers to inspect the island.
2. According to an observation from our ship along with the reports by the captain and by the architectural engineer, I would like to say the following concerning the building a temporary watchtower at Takeshima, which comprises of east and west islands.
(A) The west island is higher than the east island, it is more
than 410 feet high. The circumference of the islands is precipitous cliff and very hard to climb, and there is no room to establish a watchtower there. In addition, the summit of the island was obscured by cloud and fog on the inspection day – even if we could
build a watchtower at the summit, it is assumed that visibility would be always bad unless cloud and fog would disappear.
(B) The east island is shorter than the west island, but its height is still 325 feet high. There is a room to build a watchtower at near the summit, with a slope at south and a little cove at west where we can attach a boat for transportation. It is a pity that the visibility would be obstructed for about 30 degree at the west-northwest direction by the west island. However, I believe that it wouldn’t be obscured by cloud and fog like the summit of the west island.
Considering above, I recognize that the adequate place of the watchtower would be the east island.
3. A plan and devices of the watchtower
I recognize that the plan made by the architectural engineer would
be adequate. According to the plan, there would be a staff room which would be
made after digging the rock. And there would be a distillation apparatus in it
along with a storeroom for food, firewood and charcoal. There would be a
watch-house and a flag pole at another place. (The flag pole can be easily put
up or put away.) The details would be abbreviated here.
4. Difficulty of watchtower officials’ life
(A) The indispensable thing at an isolated island like Takeshima
is drinking water. I recognize that there would not be a big difficulty in
living for the watchtower officers if there would be a distillation apparatus
for drinking water, stored food for several months and a steam ship that would
come to supply things once or twice a month. Actually, dozens of Japanese fishermen
are staying here and engaging in hunting seals. According to them, they are
living here from mid-May until mid-August with a supply of food by a Japanese
ship which comes here from Oki island once in a month.
(B) At first, we assumed that this island would not be adequate
for humans to live because surging waves wash all over the island. But after the
observation I understand that if we plan adequately it would not so difficult to
5. Protection of the watchtower officials
As to the protection, we need to construct it firmly and need to
make the steam-ship transportation constantly to the mainland. As this is an
isolated island in the ocean and it would not always be calm, transportation
with small ships would be difficult. It would be more difficult particularly in
winter when north wind could be severe. So we need to consider how to cope with
this season and to equip enough.
6. Attached sheets are rough sketches, reports by the captain of
Hashidate and by the architectural engineer, and a sketch of the planned
location for the watchtower.