During the Meiji period, 24 Oyatoi Gaikokujin （hired foreigners） engineers from the UKwere employed by Japanese Government to construct and manage its railways. Here, focus isplaced on four railway engineers who received university education in the middle of the 19thcentury at universities in the UK. This study introduces important documentation, such asUniversity Calendars and school records, which provide information concerning their curricula,professors, and tuition fees. At the time, engineers in traditional UK universities, for instance Cambridge Universityand Trinity College Dublin, were required to receive a solid liberal arts education. In contrastat younger universities, for example in the Department of Applied Science of King’s College,London, engineering students were provided theoretical and practical instruction. When considering the contributions they made to the development of Japan’s modernrailway system, the above information concerning their education is significant. Althoughcivil engineers wishing for membership in the Institution of Civil Engineers were required tohave grounding in the liberal arts, the Institution did not consider their school careers untilthe beginning of the 20th century. The first Engineer-in-chief, Edmund Morel, advised to theMeiji government to establish the Kobu Daigakko （the Imperial College of Engineering）. Butthere is no evidence of the four engineers’ contribution to the curriculum, partly because theyengaged in Japan very short period （24 months on average）, and three of them were in poorhealth.
UK railway engineers in Meiji Japan/ UK university engineering curriculum/ Liberal arts/ Institution of Civil Engineers. UK railway engineers in Meiji Japan/ UK university engineering curriculum/ Liberal arts/ Institution of Civil Engineers.