Kuwana Domain (1/2)Ruled by multiple Matsudaira families

Kuwana Domain

Matsudaira family crest “Rokuyo”

Article category
History of the domain
domain name
Kuwana Domain (1601-1871)
Mie Prefecture
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Kuwana Castle

Kuwana Castle

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Kuwana Castle continued to exist until the end of the Edo period as the domain castle of the Ise Kuwana clan and as a strategic point along the Tokaido route. The Kuwana clan is ruled by several Matsudaira families other than the Honda family. Here, we will explain the history of the Ise-Kuwana domain.

Reign of the Honda family

Since Kuwana was a key point along the Tokaido route, both Oda Nobunaga and Toyotomi Hideyoshi had their vassals rule over it. In 1600, the Battle of Sekigahara occurred, and when Tokugawa Ieyasu took control of the country, he gave 100,000 koku to Honda Tadakatsu, one of the four kings of Tokugawa, and entrusted him with the reign of Kuwana. Honda Tadakatsu poured his energy into the construction of Kuwana Castle and the maintenance of the castle town. In addition to carrying out a large-scale town division called the ``Keicho Town Division'', they actively gathered commercial and industrial businesses to create areas such as Aburamachi, Konyamachi, Kajicho, Nabeyacho, Uomachi, Funamacho, Furocho, and Tenmacho. We will carry out urban development that is fixed for each industry such as.

Originally, Kuwana was called "Juraku no Tsu" and developed as a city of trade and commerce during the time when Oda Nobunaga and Toyotomi Hideyoshi ruled this area. Honda Tadakatsu decided to develop the domain by adding commerce and industry to it. In addition, in parallel with the development of the Tokaido, the city was also established as a post town. Honda Tadakatsu served as the lord of the domain until 1609, when he retired and handed over his inheritance to his eldest son, Honda Tadamasa. Honda Tadamasa participated in the Osaka Winter Siege and Summer Siege and achieved great military results. After this battle, Tadamasa's eldest son, Honda Tadatoki, and Tokugawa Ieyasu's grandson, Senhime, got married. As a result of this, the Honda family was transferred to the Harima Himeji domain in 1617 with an additional 150,000 koku. Unfortunately, however, Tadatoki Honda died of illness at the young age of 31. Princess Sen moved from Himeji, Harima to Edo Castle with her daughter and spent the rest of her life there.

Reign of Hisamatsu Matsudaira family

Following the Honda family's change of country, Tokugawa Ieyasu's half-brother Sadakatsu Matsudaira became the lord of the Kuwana domain. Although Ieyasu and Sadakatsu were younger brothers, there was a 17-year age difference between them, so at the time, their relationship was similar to that of father and son. Sadakatsu Matsudaira was the lord of the Yamashiro Fushimi domain and had a koku of 50,000 koku, which he increased by 60,000 koku to 110,000 koku when he joined the Kuwana domain. Sadakatsu was mainly active in important positions in the shogunate, including serving as an advisor to the second shogun, Hidetada Tokugawa, until his death in 1624. His eldest son, Sadayuki Matsudaira, who succeeded him, focused his efforts on the installation and construction of water supply systems in Kuwana Castle Town, and the development of Misaki Shinden by reclamation of wetlands.

However, in 1635, Sadayuki's estate was increased to 150,000 koku and transferred to the Iyo Matsuyama domain. Normally in such cases, another family would enter the Kuwana domain instead, but in this case, Sadayuki Matsudaira's younger brother, Sadatsuna Matsudaira, was given 113,000 koku and became the lord of the domain. Sadatsuna Matsudaira took over his brother's business and worked hard to develop new rice fields, improve water supply, and organize a group of vassals. For this reason, Matsudaira Sadatsuna was rated higher in later generations, and is still enshrined as Chinkoku-ko and Chinkoku Daimyojin.

However, even though the head of the Matsudaira clan desperately carried out flood control works, the Kuwana domain is prone to flood damage due to the three major rivers flowing through it: the Ibi, Nagara, and Kiso rivers, resulting in damage of tens of thousands of koku every few years. It is suffering from large-scale flood damage. Sadatsuna Matsudaira was succeeded by his second son, Sadatsuna Matsudaira, but due to his poor health, he died three years after becoming the lord of the domain. Later, Sadashige Matsudaira became the fifth lord of the Iyo Matsuyama domain as an adopted son, but during his reign, the domain suffered seven floods and four major fires. The castle tower of Kuwana Castle was destroyed by a fire in 1701, and has not been rebuilt since then. Sadashige Matsudaira continued to fight disasters as the lord of the domain for 53 years, but Masuemon Nomura, a lower-ranking samurai he held in high esteem, aroused the jealousy of his vassals, which eventually escalated into a family turmoil called the ``Nomura Riot.'' It will be.

Due to the Nomura Riots, Nomura Masuemon was sentenced to death, but the Hisamatsu Matsudaira family was accused by the shogunate of causing a disturbance in the domain, and Matsudaira Shigesada was given a commission by the Echigo-Takada domain. The current prevailing theory is that the Nomura Riots were caused by Masuemon Nomura, a lowly man, who was envied by his group of vassals because he carried out restructuring of his vassals and implemented large-scale frugality, and was falsely accused of a crime he did not commit. Masu. Nomura Masuemon's sins were forgiven 113 years later, and a memorial tower was erected.

Reign of Okudaira Matsudaira family

After Shigesada Matsudaira was transferred to the Echigo-Takada domain, Tadamasa Matsudaira, the head of the Okudaira Matsudaira family, joined the Kuwana domain. Although Matsudaira is of the same gender, the Okudaira Matsudaira family is the lineage of Tadaaki Matsudaira, the fourth son born between Nobumasa Okudaira, a senior vassal of Ieyasu Tokugawa, and Kamehime, Ieyasu's eldest daughter. The Matsudaira clan is a surname used by feudal lords who are descendants of successive shoguns, including Ieyasu, so there are many Matsudaira clans. In the Okudaira Matsudaira family, Tadamasa Matsudaira caused a family commotion called the ``Shirakawa Riot'' when his grandfather Tadahiro Matsudaira was the lord of the Mutsu-Shirakawa domain, and as punishment he received a reduction in the amount of koku, a ban on the position of chief retainer, and a ban on being transferred to the left. As for his family, Tadamasa Matsudaira himself had a solid personality and skill in governing, and he helped rebuild the Kuwana domain, which had been devastated by floods and large fires, and promoted academics. For this reason, Tadamasa Matsudaira is still revered as the ``father of Chukyo.''

The Okudaira Matsudaira family. Starting with Tadamasa, successive generations included Tadatoki Matsudaira, Tadahiro Matsudaira, Tadayasu Matsudaira, Tadakazu Matsudaira, and Tadatsugu Matsudaira. Although the feudal lords were never extravagant or neglectful of national affairs, the Kuwana domain suffered from repeated floods and national affairs were always under strain. During the major construction work called ``Horeki Flood Control'' carried out when Matsudaira Tadatoki was the feudal lord, more than 50 people from the Satsuma domain who were in charge of the construction committed suicide and more than 30 died from illness. This was called the ``Horeki Flood Control Incident,'' and the Kuwana Clan was deeply resented by the Satsuma Clan. In addition to this, in the Kuwana domain, famines frequently occurred due to floods, and peasant uprisings also broke out. In particular, when Matsudaira Tadayaki, who succeeded Matsudaira Tadayuki, was ordered to transfer to the Musashi-Obori clan, the uprising that occurred in opposition was large-scale.

The reason for this uprising is said to have been because the clan attempted to move to another domain without repaying the money, even though they had received money from the people as a subsidy for agricultural finances. The situation finally settled down when the wealthy merchant Hikoemon Yamada took over his duties. However, as a result of this uprising, 20 village headmen were attacked, and reinforcements had to be called in from other domains to put it down, which is said to have thrown the Okudaira Matsudaira family into great turmoil. Thus, the reign of the Okudaira Matsudaira family came to an end.

Re-rule of Hisamatsu Matsudaira family

After the Okudaira Matsudaira family left Kuwana, Matsudaira Sadanaga, the lord of the Mutsu-Shirakawa domain, entered the castle. Sadanaga is descended from the lineage of Sadashige Matsudaira, and is the eldest son of Sadanobu Matsudaira, the head of the Roju who carried out the Kansei reforms and the lord of the Shirakawa domain. The theory behind this change of country is that Sadanobu Matsudaira used his power to take away the Kuwana domain from the Okudaira Matsudaira family and had his vassals go back to the domain ruled by his ancestors, and that he demoted Sadanaga to take responsibility for the Songo Incident. Both theories exist. There is also a theory that Sadanobu Matsudaira himself wanted to become the lord of Kuwana, but since he was already 72 years old at the time of the change of country, he never succeeded in entering Kuwana Castle. As a result of this country change, the Abe family of the Tadaaki clan, which had ruled the Musashi-Obori domain for 155 years, also changed to the Shirakawa domain.

The article on Kuwana Domain continues.

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Writer(Writer)I am a writer who loves history, focusing on the Edo period. My hobbies are visiting historical sites, temples and shrines, and reading historical novels. If there is a place you are interested in, you can fly anywhere. I'm secretly happy that the number of sword exhibitions has increased recently thanks to the success of Touken Ranbu.
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