Shimokita District, Aomori

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Shimokita District in Aomori Prefecture
Japanese monkeys
Colored areas are in the district

1. Kawauchi (now part of Mutsu-shi)
2. Ōhata (now part of Mutsu-shi)
3. Ōma
4. Higashidōri
5. Kazamaura
6. Sai
7. Wakinosawa (now part of Mutsu-shi)

Shimokita District (下北郡 Shimokita-gun?) is a district located in Aomori Prefecture, Japan. It occupies most of the northern handle of Shimokita Peninsula with the exception of Mutsu City and contains the most northern point on the island of Honshū. It is also home to the Japanese macaque, making it the northernmost natural habitat for monkeys anywhere in the world.

As of 2009, the district has an estimated population of 18,297 and a density of 33.2 persons per km². The total area was 551. 08 km².

Towns and villages[edit]

The district currently consists of one town and three villages. The city of Mutsu was formerly part of the district.

History[edit]

Shimokita District was part of ancient Kita County (北郡 Kita-gun?), established by the Northern Fujiwara. During the Edo period, the area was part of the Morioka han feudal domain of the Nambu clan, with a daikansho located in Tanabu (now part of the city of Mutsu.

The Nambu clan sided with the Ōuetsu Reppan Dōmei during the Boshin War of the Meiji Restoration and were punished by the new Meiji government by loss of their northern territories. In November 1869, Kita-gun and neighboring Sannohe District became part of the newly created Tonami Domain (斗南藩 Tonami-han?), a 30,000 koku holding created to resettle the dispossessed Matsudaira clan from Aizu-Wakamatsu. In July 1871, with the abolition of the han system, Tonami Domain became Tonami Prefecture, and was merged into the newly created Aomori Prefecture in September 1871.

During the early Meiji period administrative reorganization of Japan on July 22, 1878, Shimokita and Kamikita were divided from former Kita County, and Shimokita was divided into 33 villages. In the cadastral reform of April 1, 1889, the number of villages was reduced through consolidations and mergers to nine. Tanabu Village was elevated to town status on January 1, 1899 and Kawauchi Village became Kawauchi Town on October 31, 1917. On November 10, 1928 the Imperial Japanese Navy port of Ōminato was proclaimed a town, followed by Ōhata Town on May 1, 1934. Ōma Village became Ōma Town on November 3, 1942. On September 1, 1959 Ōminato and Tanabu towns merged to form the city of Ōminato-Tanabu, later renamed Mutsu. On March 14, 2005 the towns of Kawauchi and Ōhata and the village of Wakinosawa merged into the city of Mutsu.

pre-1889 April 1, 1889 1889 - 1949 1950–1989 1989–present present
Ōma Village
Okudo Village
Ōoku Village November 3, 1942
Ōma Town
Ōma Town Ōma Town Ōma
Shimofuro Village
Ikokuma Village
Hebiurakani Village
Kazamaura Village Kazamaura Village Kazamaura Village Kazamaura Village Kazamaura
Sai Village
Chogo Village
Sai Village Sai Village Sai Village Sai Village Sai
Tanabu Village
Sekine Village
Okunai Village
Nakanosawa Village
Tanabu Village January 1, 1901
Tanabu Town
September 1, 1959
Ōminato-Tanabu City
August 1, 1960
name change
Mutsu City
Mutsu City Mutsu
Ōminato Village
Ōhira Village
Jogasawa Village
Ōminato Village November 10, 1928
Ōminato Town
Kawauchi Village
Hikawa Village
Shukuobe Village
Kakizaki Village
Kawauchi Village October 31, 1917
Kawauchi Town
Kawauchi Town March 14, 2005
merged with Mutsu City
Ōhata Village
Shozugawa Village
Ōhata Village May 1, 1934
Ōhata Town
Ōhata Town
Wakinosawa Village
Ozawa Village
Wakinosawa Village Wakinosawa Village Wakinosawa Village
Ōri Village
Mena Village
Gamanosawa Village
Noushi Village
Iwaya Village
Shikariya Village
Shitsukari Village
Sarugamori Village
Odanozawa Village
Shiranuka Village
Sunagomata Village
Taya Village
Higashidōri Village Higashidōri Village Higashidōri Village Higashidōri Village Higashidōri

Coordinates: 41°17′N 141°13′E / 41.283°N 141.217°E / 41.283; 141.217