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A Guided Tour along the Monuments engraved with 'Fuchu Kouta' Ballads

更新日:2019年2月11日

On October 10th, 2018 we gathered in front of the Fuchu City Tourist Information map for another guided tour.
First of all, we learned about ‘Fuchu Kouta’ which is a set of 6 ballads written in 1929 (Showa 4) with the intention of creating suitable folk songs for the Musashi Kokufu provincial city, which was cultivated in a long history.
There were 4 people involved in the creation of the ballads: Noguchi Ujou (lyrics), Nakayama Shinpei (composition), Fujima Hisae (choreography), Kodera Yuukichi (supervision).
The lyrics of the ballads convey the history of Fuchu through places or events such as the Okunitama-jinja Shrine, Bambadaimon no Keyaki Namiki (two rows of Zelkova trees along the avenue), Fuchu Kosatsuba, Zenmyoji Temple, Bubaigawara Battlefield and Tamagawa River.

If you would like to see them all, here are the directions:

“Fuchu Shiyakusho Mae” Intersection
No.1 is at the “Fuchu Shiyakusho Mae” intersection corner.

Address: 5-1-2 Miyanishi-cho, Fuchu, Tokyo

No.2 is at the Keyaki Namiki Dori Ave., down the Keio Line escalator.
No.2 is at the Keyaki Namiki Dori Ave., down the Keio Line escalator.

Address: 1-1-5 Kotobuki-cho, Fuchu, Tokyo

Kyodo-no-Mori General Gymnasium
No.3 is at the corner of the intersection near the Kyodo-no-Mori General Gymnasium.

Address: 6-30-34 Koremasa, Fuchu, Tokyo

on the side of the Zenmyoji Temple gate
No.4 is on the side of the Zenmyoji Temple gate.

Address: 1-5-4 Honmachi, Fuchu, Tokyo

near the Nitta Yoshisada statue
No.5 is near the Nitta Yoshisada statue.

Address: 3-26-12 Katamachi, Fuchu, Tokyo

next to the Furusato Fuchu History Museum
No.6 is on the premises of Okunitama-jinja Shrine, next to the Furusato Fuchu History Museum.

Address: 3-1 Miyamachi, Fuchu, Tokyo

Next, we went to a small shrine on the premises of Okunitama-jinja Shrine.
Its name is Miyanome-jinja Shrine and it is dedicated to the goddess of a smooth childbirth.
There are not only ‘ema’ (votive tablets), but also many ‘hishaku’ (large spoon-like tools for scooping water) with small holes set up at the shrine.
They are tools full of prayers to have as easy delivery as the water that leaks from the bottom.
Even after your prayer has been safely fulfilled, you should continue to pay your respects with the ‘hishaku.’

Directions: 3-1 Miyamachi, Fuchu, Tokyo

Next, we passed by Fuchu’s Sumo Stage for sumo.
Sumo Festival, known as “Hassaku Sumo”, is held there every year.
It was built for the Hassaku Sumo Festival which originally started as dedicatory sumo matches to pray for the peace reigns over the land and the huge harvest in commemoration of the fact that Lord Ieyasu Tokugawa made a triumphal entry into the Edo Castle in August 1st, 1590.
Nowadays, the purpose of the festival is to encourage physical activities.

Directions: 3-1 Miyamachi, Fuchu, Tokyo

From the premises of Okunitama-jinja Shrine, we went pass by the beautiful Keyaki Namiki Dori Ave., where the autumn foliage presented us with a dazzling array of colors to gaze upon.

Directions: 1-4 Kotobuki-cho, Fuchu, Tokyo

Then we stopped for a minute in front of the Hotel Matsumotoya 1725.
It’s a newly renovated hotel which was originally founded in 1725.

Directions: 2-4 Miyanishi-cho, Fuchu, Tokyo

Next we stopped at the corner of the “Fuchu Shiyakusho Mae” intersection with the former Kyu-koshu kaido Road and Fuchu kaido Road and we were explained the history of the Fuchu Kosatsuba, where there once was the center of the post town in Fuchu.
Kosatsuba was a place to put up a notice board on which notifications and bans from the Edo Shogunate were written by carbon ink.
Nowadays, there are only a few remaining, therefore Fuchu Kosatsuba is very much valuable.

Directions: 5-1-2 Miyanishi-cho, Fuchu, Tokyo

Not very far away from the Fuchu Kosatsuba, there is a Buddhist temple, with a beautiful garden.
Its name is Zenmyo-ji Temple and it is home to a large and small iron statues of Amitabha Buddha.
Made by sword maker Sukechika Fujiwara, these statues are enshrined as the treasures of the temple as well as national cultural treasures.

Directions: 1-5-4 Honmachi, Fuchu, Tokyo

We also saw the graves of Iori Yoda, who strongly believed in Taiseikyo (a religion that aimed to achieve the unification of three religions: Shinto, Confucianism and Buddhism), and Imperial restoration activist Sanemitsu Saionji at the temple’s cemetery.

Directions: 1-5-4 Honmachi, Fuchu, Tokyo

Our tour ended by the Statue of Nitta Yoshisada at Bubaigawara Station.
On May 15th and 16th, 1333 he led the anti-shogunate imperial forces against the forces of the Kamakura Shogunate.
The Battle of Bubaigawara ultimately ended the Kamakura Shogunate.

Directions: 3-26-29-2 Katamachi, Fuchu, Tokyo

We look forward to the next guided tour!

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