Ogamo Motokiyo


Ogamo Clan


Hōki Province

Lifespan:  15xx to 2/13 of Keichō 19 (1614)

Rank:  bushō

Title:  Lieutenant of Outer Palace Guards of the Left Division, Chief of Outer Palace Guards of the Left Division, Governor of Hōki

Clan:  Nanjō → Ogamo

Domain:  Higo-Kumamoto

Lord:  Nanjō Mototsugu → Nanjō Mototada → Konishi Yukinaga → Katō Kiyomasa

Father:  Nanjō Munekatsu

Adoptive Father:  Ogamo Mototomo

Siblings:  Nanjō Mototsugu, Motokiyo, Nanjō Motoaki, Gyōei-hime

Children:  Nanjō Motokuni, Nanjō Yoshimasa, daughter

Ogamo Motokiyo served as a bushō from the Sengoku to early Edo periods.  He was the lord of Iwakura Castle in the Kume District of Hōki Province.

Motokiyo was born as the second son of Nanjō Munekatsu.  His year of birth is unknown, but he first appears in records from the eleventh month of 1562 in which he donated 75 koku in Kanda to the Matsuo Shrine.  Based on recent research, however, it has been determined that these references to Motokiyo are instead to his father, Nanjō Munekatsu.

At some time during the Eiroku (1558 to 1570), Genki (1570 to 1573), or Tenshō (1573 to 1593) eras, he inherited the headship of the Ogamo clan and adopted the Ogamo surname.  Initially, Motokiyo joined his older brother, Nanjō Mototsugu, by submitting a written pledge of allegiance to Kikkawa Motoharu (the second son of Mōri Motonari).  In 1579, however, the Nanjō clan separated from the Mōri and aligned with the Oda clan.  In 1580, when Motoharu encroached on Hōki Province, Motokiyo and Mototsugu launched two waves of attacks against Yabase Castle, but retreated in defeat.  Thereafter, in battles against the Kikkawa clan, Motokiyo fought valiantly to defend Iwakura Castle, but Hideyoshi was pinned down in a three-month-long siege of Tottori Castle so could not send reinforcements from the invasion force of the Chūgoku Region to the isolated Nanjō clan.  Meanwhile, some of the soldiers in his garrison fled for the protection of the Oda forces laying siege to Tottori Castle so, in 1582, after the fall of Ueshi Castle, Motokiyo joined Mototsugu and fled from Iwakura Castle to Harima Province.

In the sixth month of 1582, Nobunaga died in a coup d’état known as the Honnō Temple Incident.  After ensuing settlement between Hideyoshi and the Mōri, Motokiyo returned in 1584 to eastern Hōki.  Thereafter, while conducting affairs of governance, he served as a caretaker for Mototsugu who was frail of health.  In 1587, Motokiyo served under Hideyoshi in the Subjugation of Kyūshū, repelling a nighttime assault by the Shimazu army during the siege of Taka Castle.  In 1591, Mototsugu died and was succeeded by his son, Nanjō Mototada.  Motokiyo became his guardian, serving as the chamberlain of Utsubuki Castle and managing political affairs from a residence on these grounds.  During the Bunroku-Keichō Campaign, Motokiyo served in lieu of Mototada, leading 1,500 soldiers across the sea to the Korean Peninsula.  During this conflict, he captured alive the son of a landlord from Gyeongsang Province.

Thereafter, discord arose between Motokiyo and Mototada in regard to who would serve as the guardian.  Upon the advice of Yamada Etchū-no-kami, he was placed by Hideyoshi under Konishi Yukinaga and, at this time, reverted to the Nanjō surname.  He made renovations to the Sagara Shrine which included the grave for Sagara Yoshihi.  In 1600, at the Battle of Sekigahara, Motokiyo joined the Konishi forces to fight against Katō Kiyomasa on behalf of the Western Army, but, along with fellow retainers, surrendered.  After the war, as the Konishi family fell into ruin, Motokiyo became a retainer of Kiyomasa with a fief of 6,000 koku.  He then underwent the rites of tonsure and adopted the name of Mototaku.

In 1614, Motokiyo headed toward Ōsaka seeking to affiliates with Toyotomi Hideyoshi in the Winter Campaign of the Siege of Ōsaka, but became ill while on the boat.  Efforts to recover at the Kennin Temple in Kyōto were unsuccessful and he died on 2/13 of Keichō 19 (1614).  Under another theory, this occurred on 10/23 of the same year.

According to historical accounts compiled by a senior retainer of the Kumamoto domain (Hosokawa family) toward the end of the Edo bakufu, Motokiyo stated in his will that his eldest grandson, Tōhachirō, succeed him rather than his eldest son, Kanzaburō, who was frail of health.  However, his second (illegitimate) son, Sakujūrō (later known as Nanjō Yoshimasa) who was in Ōsaka then gained support and became Motokiyo’s successor.  A faction within the Nanjō family who were dissatisfied with this outcome supported Tōhachirō and, through the Katō family, turned to Hosokawa Tadaoki, the lord of the Kokura domain, whereupon Tōhachirō was employed with a fief of 3,000 koku.

There are several theories concerning Motokiyo’s latter years.  According to one account, after the Battle of Sekigahara, he did not serve Katō Kiyomasa but instead fled to Mimasaka Province where he later died.  Another source indicates he resided in Saibara in Sakushū (Mimasaka).  However, these theories are contained in materials written in later periods and cannot be authenticated.  According to sources that can be corroborated, his gravestone is in Kumamoto Prefecture.