Masatomo was the fourth son of Hotta Masayoshi, the rôjû (shogunate Elder) famous for his role in negotiating the Harris Treaty. Following the abolition of the han, Masatomo was named a Count, and was obliged to relocate to Tokyo.
Once he was able to return to Sakura, he became an advocate for regional (rural) industry and development; Sakura castle having been converted into a military base, he built a mansion on the other side of the city in 1890, and developed an agricultural experimentation operation on the lands adjacent to the mansion in 1897. The experimental station remained a prominent site for such activities for twenty-five years, before an official prefectural agricultural testing station was established. Masatomo was also very active in contributing to the construction of Western-style schools in the region.
He is buried alongside his father and ancestors at Jindai-ji, a temple in Sakura City.
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