Hachisuka Clan

Hachisuka Clan

The Hachisuka clan (蜂須賀氏, Hachisuka-shi) is descended from Emperor Seiwa (850-880) and is a branch of the Ashikaga and Shiba clans (Seiwa Genji).

Ashikaga Ieuji (xiii century), son of Ashikaga Yasuuji, is the first to adopt the name of Shiba.

The Shiba are shugo (governors) of the provinces of Echizen, Owari and others, and are during the Ashikaga shogunate one of the three families (Shiba, Hosokawa and Hatakeyama) from which the Kyoto-kanryo (prime minister of the shogun) can be chosen.

Shiba Masaaki, a descendant of Shiba Takatsune (1367), settled in Hachisuka, near the Kiso River, on the border of Owari and Mino provinces, and from that day on was called "Hachisuka".

In the 16th century, the Hachisuka clan came to prominence thanks to its then leader, Hachisuka Koroku. His uncle holds Hachisuka Castle and he himself lives in Miyaushiro Castle which is the residence of his maternal family.

Koroku served the Oda clan and his participation was instrumental in many of Oda Nobunaga's early victories. Later he served the interests of Toyotomi Hideyoshi.

His son Iemasa received from Hideyoshi the domain of Tokushima as a new possession and from that moment until the end of the Edo period, the Hachisuka were daimyos of Tokushima.

They are one of the few families to keep the same land holdings from the beginning to the end of the Edo period. They also managed to keep a constant income of 256 000 koku.

At the end of the Edo period, the clan was in the center of national attention thanks to its leader at that time, Hachisuka Narihiro, one of the sons of the 11th shogun, Ienari.

The clan sided with the Kyoto government during the Boshin war and provided troops for the fighting in the north of Japan as well as ensuring its security duties in Edo (Tokyo).

The clan faced internal dissensions the following year, during the episode of the Inada rebellion, but dissolved peacefully like all the han of Japan in 1873.

After the Meiji restoration, the Hachisuka clan was integrated into the new kazoku noble system of the Meiji era.