- Nihongo: literally second generation - those born outside Japan and their descendants. Also called Nikkei by the inhabitants of the Home Islands.
- The Japanese of North America.
- Ruled by the Diet parliament and subjects of the Japanese Emperor, Juntoku, 136th Tenno no Nihon.
- Accorded the status of being Second from the Center as long term Méxica allies and the treaties of Unity.
In the late 1100s, a proto-Mongol Empire [ruled by Genghis’ father Yesükhei] conquered northern China and Korea. Attempts by the ruling Japanese clan of the time, the Fujiwara, to exploit this chaos by seizing southern Korea for themselves, and parts of coastal China angered the Khagan and he launched an invasion of the islands with a Korean fleet.
The Khagan did not attempt to land on Kyushu, but instead landed in southern Honshu and immediately defeated the main Fujiwara army sent against him. The Japanese Emperor panicked, as the Mongols were advancing upon Kyoto and burning every town, city and hamlet they encountered. The foray into China (initially for piracy) had yielded a variety of large, ocean-going Chinese-built ships – some very large.
Believing that all of Japan would be destroyed, the Japanese Emperor fled, following the description of a mythical land to the far east, across the ocean. Gumshan, the land of the golden mountain. He took with him his court and thousands of others – retainers, craftsmen, everyone who could be packed aboard every ship they could find.
The journey across the north Pacific was hellish, and nearly half of the refugees perished in the initial attempt.
They arrived in gumshan, the west coast of North America. The coastal regions first settled by the Japanese newcomers were Chemakum and Chehalis, founding the city of Shinedo. Within two years of their arrival, the Nisei had established contact with the wide-ranging Toltec pochteca network and had bartered away their dominance of the new world (metalworking, horses, double-growing-season rice) to the southerners in exchange for slaves and food.
Two centuries after contact the kingdom of Tollán disintegrated, signalling a wave of tribal migrations into the south; the seventh of these tribes were the Aztecâ tlaca, ‘the People of the Place of the Herons’ who were to become the Méxica.
The Nisei continued to trade with the cities of the Valley of México and the basis of a long-lasting alliance was created. The Nisei expanded along the west coast of North America and then across the forests and mountains into the Plains. Here the samurai came into conflict with the Dakota and other plains nations, reaching towards the Great Lakes and the Great Snake River where their expansion drove into the lands held by the Shawnee and the Iroquois.
The Nisei kept the survival of the Imperial family in the Americas a secret for a long time, fearing that the Mongols would pursue them across the Pacific if the descendants of Ameratsu remained among them.
After five centuries the Nisei returned to Japan to restore the Imperial dynasty, defeating the Mongol dynasty which had ruled the home islands during their exile. (The popular Five Rings saga of Lord Musashi recalls this period.)
In recent centuries the wealth and power of the ancient nobility has been restricted by tax laws, eroding their estates, and causing most of these clans to pursue military careers.
For the early history of the nation see:
- the Nisei Republic
- the Tokugawa Nisei Shogunate
- the Azuchi Nisei Shogunate
- the Hideyoshi Nisei Shogunate
Some of the information on this page is derived from an interview with Space Archaelogy