|小栗上野介の史跡（東善寺HP） ● ● 高崎市倉渕町の水沼河原・観音山・相間（あいま）川 など
Historic sites of Kozukenosuke Oguri (Tozenji Temple Web site) ● ● Mizunuma Riverbank, Kannon-yama Mt., Aima River, etc. in Kurabuchi Town, Takasaki City
Kozukenosuke Oguri Historic Sites in Kurabuchi
Memorial Cenotaph, Kannon-yama Mt., Shimai (Sisters) Kannon, etc.
The memorial cenotaph in honor of Kozukenosuke Oguri at Mizunuma Riverbank: Oguri and his retainers were killed by the Western Army on this riverbank.
Memorial Cenotaph in honor of Kozukenosuke Oguri
Take Route 406 from Takasaki City center, drive for 40 minutes, turn left at the "Kurabuchi Post Office" traffic light, go 200 meters, turn right before Mizunuma Bridge to the upstream direction onto the banks of the Karasu River, so that you can find the cenotaph.
In 1929, the villagers, who were deeply moved by Kozukenosuke's legacy and mourning his death, collected donations and planned to build a cenotaph to honor him at the place of his beheading.
From the Meiji era to the end of the WWII, it was a rule to notify the Ministry of Home Affairs when erecting such a monument, and the contact point was the police station. The contact person was the police department.
The plan was to inscribe the inscription, "Kozukenosuke Oguri, a great man, was cut down here without any crime."
Soon after, however, Motokichi Ichikawa, the mayor of the Gonda village responsible for the monument, was summoned by the chief of the Takasaki Police Station.
The chief told him, "The inscription says that he was cut down without any crime, but it was the loyalist army that cut him down. The loyalist army is the Emperor's army, but the Emperor's army would never slay an innocent man. The inscription is a problematc expression, so do something about it."
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The term "loyalist army"
The term "loyalist (government) army" is a self-righteous term that considers itself to be "the Emperor's army and the right army to do whatever it wants," while condemnin the opposite force as "bandit army."
There is no such thing as a "righteous army" in the world.
Moreover, the opposite of "government" is "people." Notwithstanding, they insisted a wild and crude idea that the opposite of "government army" is not "people's army" but "bandit army."
It is clear that the post-Meiji government has conducted its politics with the mindset of a loyalist army.
In the village, we do not call them "loyalist (government) army" but "western forces."
■There were four people who visited the U.S.
If this mansion had been built, that dream would have unfolded.
At that time, there were four people in the village including Kozukenosuke Oguri who had visited the U.S. and traveled around the world. Others were Mahiko Tsukamoto, Yuzo Ebata, and Toshichi Sato. Also, Oguri's adopted son Mataichi was an excellent young man who had graduated from the French language school. Therefore, the dream would have been achieved.
There are ruins of the mansion on Kannon-yama Mountain, pictured here.
Kozukenosuke Oguri was constructing a mansion to live at Kannon-yama Mountain in Gonda. The house is now the residence of the Tomaru family in Soja-cho, Maebashi City. Kannon-yama is a small mountain that rises right behind the national highway. The site of the mansion and the stable remain intact, and the Kannon-yama water supply that Oguri drew from a stream in the distance still flows through the hill.
I will show you someday that a Grand Minister of State will be born from this valley."
Oguri wanted to settle in the village and educate young people to cope with the new era. After driving out the "Buchikawashi*" mob, he told his dream to a village official from a neighboring village, who came to apologize for joining the mob under threat, and explained that from now on they would work hand in hand.
* The term "bushikowashi" refers to a situation that occurred after the middle of the Edo period when, due to bad harvests and hoarding, the people, who were having difficulty making a living, attacked rice dealers, loan sharks, liquor stores, and other wealthy merchants in groups, destroying their houses and taking their rice, silver, and other goods.
◆ Related Page: The site of the Oguri residence on Kannon-yama Mountain... The Western forces accused him of "setting up a fort and filling a large moat with water.
Kotaka Irrigation Waterway
The community of Kotaka in Gonda Village was always having trouble securing water for rice planting due to the scarcity of running water. Seeing Kozukenosuke Oguri had easily drawn water to Kannon-yama Mt. by instrumental survey, the people of Kotaka asked Oguri to survey the path of irrigation water to be drawn from Inasezawa on the other side of the ridge. After Oguri's death, the irrigation system was completed and continues to supply water to the Kotaka community to this day.
→ Kotaka Irrigation Waterway
Statues of Shimai (Sisters) Kannon
The statues were erected in memory of two young daughters of Makiko Tsukamoto, a servant of the Oguri family.
In December 1992, the Kozukenosuke Oguri Honoring Society erected these Kannon statues by the Aima River in memory of two young girls who were martyred. They are rare statues of two sisters carved from a single stone.
Created by Yoshio Hagiwara (Yoshioka Town)
For detals of the story, see "Oguri Kozukenosuke Ichizokuno Higeki (The Tragedy of the Kozukenosuke Oguri Clan)" by Ryohei Koitabashi.
■The place of martyrdom of the Tsukamoto family
Mahiko Tsukamoto's mother, Maki, and her granddaughter, Shisa, were lost in the mountains when they met Kijuro Shimoda, a charcoal burner, and asked him for guidance. Kijuro returned home to get ready, changed his clothes, took lunch boxes for them, and returned to where they were waiting. When he returned there, however, he found that Maki had stabbed her granddaughter in the throat, and then herself had committed suicide and died, perhaps in despair that they had been tipped off because Kijuro had returned so late.
Kijuro was surprised and reported to Nanokaichi with their belongings. The remains were later moved to the side of the Shimoda family cemetery, and then to Tozenji Temple in 1955.
Location where the that happened: About 3 km west of the Jizo Pass on a forest road, then another 500 km on a forest road to the right (north), and then over a ridge to Shimonosawa.
(There is a gate at the pass, and you cannot enter by car without permission from the forest office.)
■ Monument to the Martyrdom of the Tsukamoto Family
Monument "Place of Takeing their own lives"
It is a place that cannot be found without the guidance of the locals.
|◇ Oguri camellia: The famous flower that blooms every spring at the tombs of Oguri and
his followers, is a black camellia.
◇ Oguri's Followers on the Mission to America: Nine Followers of Tadamasa Oguri
◇ The first French language school in Japan
◇ "Kateba Kangun (If you win, you are the loyalist army)" is the victor's arrogance.