Adachi Shigenobu

足立重信

Adachi Clan

Bushō

Owari Province

Lifespan:  Unknown to 11/17 of Kanei 2 (1625)

Rank:  bushō

Clan:  Adachi

Lord:  Katō Yoshiakira

Han:  Iyo-Matsuyama

Adachi Shigenobu served as a bushō during the Azuchi-Momoyama period and member of the Matsuyama han in Iyo Province during the Edo period.

Shigenobu was born in Mino Province and from an early age acted as a servant of Katō Yoshiakira.  When Yoshiakira was assigned to Iyo, Shigenobu accompanied him and resided in Masaki Castle. Shigenobu participated in the Bunroku-Keichō Expedition (Bunroku-Keichō no eki), a conquest led by the administration of Toyotomi Hideyoshi on the Korean Peninsula on two separate occasions in the 1590’s.  In 1600, during the Battle of Sekigahara, Shigenobu stayed behind with Tsukuda Kazunari to protect the castle and domain.  Shigenobu benefited from support by the Mōri to quell an uprising by former retainers of the Kōno clan in a clash known as the Nighttime Attack at Mitsuhama.  Owing to these contributions, Shigenobu was appointed an elder of the clan and awarded a fief of 5,000 koku.

Thereafter, Shigenobu primarily focused on his duties as a bugyō, or magistrate, to develop his territory.  This included excavation of a twelve-kilometer waterway and construction of a dam in the lower reaches of the Iyo River to reduce flooding, and the cultivation of an expansive area of land along the river.  In the southern foothills of Matsuyama Castle, he changed the direction of the Yuyama River to have it converge with the Iyo River, utilizing the prior course of the river as a moat for the castle.  Along with sturdy embankments and infrastructure to supply water, Shigenobu demonstrated his prowess at land development.  These improvements prevented flood damage in his territory and boosted crop production.  The name of the Iyo River was changed to the Shigenobu River in a rare instance of recognition for the civic contributions of an individual.

Shigenobu made further improvements to the kuruwa, or defensive walls, and canals surrounding Matsuyama Castle.   In the Edo period, Shigenobu served in the first bureau of public works of the Iyo-Matsuyama domain.  He died in 1625, prior to the completion of Matsuyama Castle.  He is buried at the Yamagoshi-Raikō Temple overlooking the city below.