Watari Castle (Mikawa)
Watarijō was constructed by Torii Nakatsukasa around 1167. The Torii Clan were originally from Kumano (Kii Peninsula), but left there following the Jōkyū War. In the Sengoku period the lord of Watarijō was Torii Tadayoshi who was a vassal of Matsudaira Hirotada. Torii Tadamune, son of Tadayoshi, died defending Watarijō from Oda Nobuhide, the 'Tiger of Owari', and the castle was destroyed. Torii Tadayoshi, a so-called model of frugality, re-built Watarijō and stored weapons and cash there in anticipation of Tokugawa Ieyasu's return to Okazaki Castle. Watarijō was abandoned at the latest in 1590 when Tokugawa Ieyasu relocated to Kantō as per his agreement with Toyotomi Hideyoshi, kampaku (regent) of Japan.
Watarijō is an earthworks hirajiro (flatland) castle ruin the Watari Township of Okazaki Municipality. The township is made up of several small hamlets surrounded by rice paddies on the western bank of the Yahagi River at the point it is joined by the Oto River; the castle site is in the hamlet of Higashiura. Watari means 'Crossing', and so, it being the site of a confluence of rivers, this area was historically important as a river-crossing site; it is now spanned by a bridge for vehicular traffic and another for the railway of the Tōkaidō Main Line.
At Watarijō the castle's remains consist of dorui (earthen embankments) and the trace of a moat now used as rice paddies running between the road and the residences which occupy the site (the residences belong to the Nagashima family and Torii family, descendants of the Torii Clan). There are stelae attesting to the history of the site at the western end of the paddy-moat where there is also a mound of earth. The Nagashima Residence behind the eastern end of the moat retains dorui surrounding it in an 'L'-shape. The dorui is about 3m high and 30m in length, though it is now on private property and covered in trees.
|English Name||Watari Castle (Mikawa)|
|Founder||Torii Nakatsukasa; Torii Tadayoshi|
|Year Founded||1167; Mid' 16th Cntury|
|Castle Type||Fortified Manor|
|Castle Condition||Ruins only|
|Historical Period||Pre Edo Period|
|Access||Nishi-Okazaki Station on the Tōkaidō Main Line; 22 minute walk|
|Visitor Information||Access Limited|
|Time Required||10 minutes|
|Location||Okazaki, Aichi Prefecture|
|Coordinates||34° 56' 34.87" N, 137° 8' 28.14" E|
|Added to Jcastle||2023|
|Admin Year Visited||Viewer Contributed|
|Friends of JCastle|
|Jōkaku Shashin Kiroku|