Ishibe-juku (石部宿? Ishibe-juku) was the fifty-first of the fifty-three stations of the Tōkaidō. It is located in the downtown area of the present-day city of Konan, Shiga Prefecture, Japan. Because it only took approximately one day to travel from Kyoto to Ishibe-juku, there was a saying that went, "rise in Kyoto, stay in Ishibe."
Ishibe-juku was originally formed in 1571, when Oda Nobunaga formed the town of Ishibe (石部町 Ishibe-machi) by joining the five nearby villages. In 1597, Toyotomi Hideyoshi further developed the post station to be used for the shipment of goods by travelers on their way to Zenkō-ji in Shinano Province. When the Tōkaidō was established in 1601, Ishibe-juku became an official post station.
Inside the post station, there were two honjin and 32 other inns among the 458 structures that stretched approximately 1.6 km, as was recorded in 1863. In 1864, Tokugawa Iemochi, the fourteenth shogun of Japan, stayed at one of the two honjin, though his visit was preceded in 1863 by Tokugawa Yoshinobu, who would eventually become the fifteenth shogun of Japan. There is not much remaining of the original buildings today, but there is an archives museum dedicated to the former post town in Konan.
Neighboring Post Towns
Media related to Ishibe-juku at Wikimedia Commons
- Shiga Prefectural Tourism Information: Ishibe-juku Archives Museum. (Japanese) Biwako Visitors Bureau. Accessed March 14, 2008.