“Aomori” was named in 1624, the early Edo period when construction of seaport had been started in current Aomori City. In those days, it was said that there were green woods near current Honcho, Aomori, which was used as landmark for the ships that came into port. You might find Aomori’s attraction more, if you learn about history and culture of Aomori.
The base of Aomori’s landform was created in Paleozoic Era, Mesozoic Era and Cenozoic Era. At the first, the area of Aomori was in the bottom of sea and it had appeared formed over the ocean face caused by repeating of volcano activities since Mesozoic Era. Besides, it is said that representative volcano in Aomori such as Mt. Iwaki, Hakkoda Mountains and Mount Osore had begun to be in activity in the era. The volcanic rocks formed by volcano eruption were used for stone tools, and Jomon earthenware was made from good quality clay. The following period, the trace of the Ice Age can be seen in the World Heritage, Shirakami-Sanchi, and some plants that are still remaining are found.
Before and until Edo Period
Western side of Aomori Prefecture is called as “Tsugaru” and eastern side is called as “Nanbu”, and those two area have developed each culture that the birth and confrontation of history is deep and complicated. During the era of civil wars (1495 – 1575), the Nanbu clan had controlled over Aomori, Akita and Iwate region. However it was hard to rule the wide area, and conflict had been continued. In late 16th century, Oura Tamenobu who was vassal of the Nanbu clan made rebellion and he became the lord of Tsugaru region in 1590, then named himself as Tsugaru Tamenobu. In the same time, Nanbu Nobunao became the lord of Nanbu region. In the Meiji Period, those two area with different character became into one as Aomori Prefecutre. The Hirosaki Neputa Festival, Aomori Nebuta Festival and Goshogawara Tachineputa Festival yearly held in August has long history as well. Some people say that those festivals have begun when Tsugaru Tamenobu ordered a huge lantern on the trip to Kyoto in 1593. There is a difference between the festival in Tsugaru and Nanbu region, that is, Nebuta and Neputa Festival of Tsugaru region is brave one held in the night, on the other hand Hachinohe Sansya Taisai Festival is elegant one held in daytime. However those are all historical festivals that have been passed on until today.
Modern and Contemporary Period
In 1877, Aomori prefecture had apples ripening on the trees, and that was the first apple cultivation in Japan. After that, Aomori overcame various difficulties like the pest or illness, and then became the Japan’s number one prefecture of apple production. Aomori prefecture, surrounded beautiful nature, has various activities through a year such as flower viewing in spring, trekking in summer, autumn leaves hunting in fall and ski in winter. Pure water flowing in river makes good sake and the prefecture has abundant seafood from the seas on the three sides surrounding. Also there are many hot springs with the grant nature view. Aomori has much more attractions, we hope you to visit to and experience them in Aomori.