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Morihei Ueshiba

Aikido is a modern derrivative of Daito-ryu Aikijujutsu. Founded by Morihei Ueshiba (1883 - 1969) also known as O'Sensei.

He was born in Tanabe, Kii Province (Wakayama Prefecture) on December 14, 1883. He began his Martial Art studies with Tenshin Shinyo-ryu Jujitsu under Tokusaburo Tozawa in Tokyo. 2 years later he married Hatsu Itogawa in Tanabe and joined the 61st Army Infantry Regiment of Wakayama, taking part in the Russian/Japanese War with his Regiment at the Manchurian Front.

Three years late in 1908 he received his Yagyu-ryu Jujitsu Certificate (probably Goto-ha Yagyu Shingan-ryu) from Masanosuke Tsuboi or Masakatsu Nakai, a year before the famous Kodokan Judo Headquarters was established.

Some 4 years later he met Sokaku Takeda of Daito-ryu Jujitsu in Hisada Inn in Engaru and with an introduction from Kotaro Yoshida he completed his first 10-day Daito-ryu Seminar. Following this he began his intensive study of Daito-ryu Aikijujutsu.

In 1920 he moved to Ayabe, site of the Omoto religion, in Kyoto Prefecture, with his family to build Ueshiba Juku dojo attached to his residence. Sokaku Takeda visited Ayabe with his family to teach, afterwhich Ueshiba received Kyoju Dairi from Takeda qualifying him as Certified Daito-ryu Instructor.

5 years later he gave a special demonstration in Tokyo for high-ranking military officers and dignitaries, moving 2 years later with his entire family to Tokyo to establish a temporary dojo in the billiard room of Count Shimazu's mansion in Shiba, followed in 1931 by the dedication of Kobukan Dojo in Ushigome, Wakamatsu-cho where Ueshiba's name appears in Takeda's enrolment book.

In 1933 the Technical manual, Budo Renshu, is published followed 5 years later by the Technical manual, Budo, containing photographs of Ueshiba's techniques.

In 1941 Ueshiba gives a demonstration arranged by Admiral Isamu Takeshita at Saineikan dojo on palace grounds before members of Imperial family and takes Sessions at The Military Police Academy and Martial Arts Advisor for Shimbuden and Kenkoku University afterwhich the name "Aikido" becomes official and is registered with Ministry of Education.

He later moved to Iwama, Ibaragi Prefecture where Kisshomaru Ueshiba becomes Director of Kobukan Dojo and First Aiki Shrine built in Iwama. The Aikikai Hombu Dojo moves to Iwama, with an office opened in Tokyo and Kisshomaru becomes head of Aikikai Dojo where in 1949 regular practice resumes at Tokyo dojo.

In 1960 Usehiba receives Medal of Honour with Purple Ribbon from the Japanese Government and then in 1964 receives Order of the Rising Sun, 4th Class, as the founder of aikido. In 1969 Ueshiba gave his final demonstration at Kagami Biraki Celebration before succumbing to liver cancer on 26 April. His ashes are buried at Kozanji, Tanbe, his hair preserved at Iwama, Kumano Dojo, Ayabe and Hombu Dojo and posthumously made an honorary citizen of Tanabe and Iwama.