Kubo Castle (Mikawa)

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Kubojō was constructed in 1530 by Okudaira Sadamasa, a vassal of Matsudaira Kiyoyasu, to exert Okudaira control in Miyazaki Township following their expansion out of Tsukude Valley. When the Takeda Clan began expanding southward, the Okudaira were forced to consider their future alliances. Secret talks were held at Kubojō in the autumn of 1570 to determine whether the clan would support the Matsudaira or the Takeda. Under Okudaira Sadakatsu, the Okudaira decided to split into two in order to guarantee that at least one branch would survive the clash between giants. Hostages were sent to the Takeda by Lord Sadakatsu, and Okudaira Sadayoshi, his son, headed up the pro-Tokugawa faction. One of the hostages sent by Sadakatsu was his grandson and Sadayoshi's son, Senchiyō, who was about ten years old at the time. The boy was marked for death.

Following the death of Takeda Shingen in the spring of 1573, Okudaira Sadayoshi wholly defected to Tokugawa Ieyasu, incurring the wrath of the Takeda. Takeda Katsuyori had Sadayoshi's son Senchiyō killed, and then sent 5,000 warriors to collect Sadayoshi's head. Sadayoshi had escaped from the Okudaira seat at Kameyamajō with his eldest son, Nobumasa, and retreated to the mountain redoubt of Takiyamajō, just southeast of Kubojō. Pushed back by the defenders, the hostile terrain, and Tokugawa reinforcements, the Takeda force was defeated at the battle of Takiyama. Kubojō was likely overran by enemies during the battle, but was thereafter restored, and decommissioned in 1590.

Visit Notes

Kubojō is a yamajiro (mountaintop castle) ruin in Ishihara Township, Okazaki Municipality. Ruins feature kuruwa (baileys), horikiri (trenches) and dorui (earthen ramparts). Additionally, there is a reconstructed watchtower because the site is maintained as a small park by a private company. Palings and doorless gateways also stand, and the company building, described on the sign as a manufacturing and research facility, appears to be intended as a faux reconstructed goten, or lord's residence.

Even though the castle site is directly above a signboard across the Otogawa River in the village of Kubo, to access it requires taking a forest road which begins and ends some distance away. I cycled along the forest road to reach this site, which actually proved to be rather isolated.

The ruins of Kubojō of have been altered over time, but some identifiable features remain. I dismounted before reaching the carpark because I had already seen a horikiri beside the path. Above was dorui. The upper bailey of the castle is on the inside of the ramparts and hosts the reconstructed tower. Lower baileys may have been altered over time, and the hillside has a lot of old, tall, decently but not expertly stacked ishigaki (stone-piled retaining walls) which contains some quite sizable stone blocks and looks like it could date to the Edo period. I also enjoyed inspecting this ishigaki, and followed a path down the hillside to discover several bands of tall stone-lined terraces, and some curious abandoned structures...


Castle Profile
English Name Kubo Castle (Mikawa)
Japanese Name 三河久保城
Founder Okudaira Sadamasa
Year Founded 1530
Castle Type Mountaintop
Castle Condition No main keep but other buildings
Historical Period Pre Edo Period
Artifacts Horikiri, Dorui, &c.
Features turrets, trenches
Visitor Information
Access I cycled from downtown Okazaki
Visitor Information 24/7 free; mountain
Time Required 30 minutes
Website https://blog.goo.ne.jp/shiro-rekishimeguri/e/beab37812c733449bc61496acd0a4f67
Location Okazaki, Aichi Prefecture
Coordinates 34° 56' 20.33" N, 137° 22' 13.66" E
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Added to Jcastle 2024
Contributor ART
Admin Year Visited Viewer Contributed
Friends of JCastle
Jōkaku Shashin Kiroku
Umoreta Kojō
Jōshi Meguri Bibōroku

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