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Castle Narukami Castle

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This article is in the series Walking the Japanese Castles
Narukami Castle (鳴神城 ), also known as Ōgoe Castle (大越城 ) is located in Ōgoe, Tamura Town, about 20 km east of Koriyama in Fukushima Prefecture.

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It is believed that the castle was constructed in 1566 by Ōgoe Akimitsu (大越顕光), a retainer of the Tamura clan (田村氏 Tamura-shi) who were related to the Date of Sendai. When Tamura Kiyoaki (田村清顕) died in 1586, the clan split into two factions: the Date branch and the Soma branch who were both strong daimyō in Mutsu Province. In 1588, Date Shigezane attacked Akimitsu who belonged to the Soma side at Ōgoe Castle. Shigezane was not able to capture the castle and instead burned down the castle town. When in 1589 war broke out between the Date and the neighbouring Iwaki clan, the Ōgoe sided the Date. Taken prisoner by Iwaki Tsunetaka (岩城常隆, 1567-1590), Akimitsu was forced to commit suicide. After that, the castle was abandoned.

The castle was situated on a hill near Magino River and had a complicated structure consisting of three enclosures and three mansions.

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The map is based on Digital Japan Portal Web Site powered by the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan.

I started on a narrow path near Ōgoe Post Office at Prefectural Route 19 following the signs.

① The entrance to the site

As there was no parking lot, I parked on the roadside.

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② A precipice at the outer line of the castle.

The steep walls prevented direct attacks by enemies.

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③ I continued along the passage beside the precipice.

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③ One of the defence posts at the eastern mansion.

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The entrance to the main enclosure.

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④ I arrived at the main enclosure; it took about 20 minutes from the entrance. Ōgoe Shrine was constructed in the centre of the former inner bailey.

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⑤ The second enclosure a bit further down from the main enclosure.

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Below the "Komaishi" (literally "horse stone"): it is shaped like a hoof and was said to be the print of Akimitsu's favourite horse "Asagiri-go".

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The view from the main enclosure.

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Date of visit: 10 August 2013

Access:


  • Address: Ogoe-cho, Kami-ogoe, Tamura-shi, Fukushima (Map)
  • Transportation: to the entrance 10 minutes from JR Ban-etsu East line Ogoe station on foot.
    14km from Ban-etsu Expwy Funehiki-Miharu IC via National Route288 and Prefectural Route 19


Map:


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Hiroto Uehara
Hiroto is an ordinary Japanese office worker, but his true mission is searching for castles on the weekend.

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