|The First Generation
||Meiji - Taisho Eras
||Mitsushima village and the Matuura Bridge.
Island Takashima, and small Torishima.
The left hill is Manto-san, where Karatsu
castle was once, and is again now.
Born in Kitahata Village as the
of Motohei and Matsu Okochi.
Moved to Mitsushima in 1893 and started the
He was successful and bought the lands of
the both sides of Yoyokaku and expanded the
He renovated the buildings into their present
forms in 1912-1913.
Born in Ishishi Village as the first daughter
of Tashiro and Kamu Yamasaki.
Wife of Masataro.
Mother of Masao.
After the deaths of Masataro
and Masao, she
managed Yoyokaku in spite of
She educated her granddaughter Mitsuyo strictly.
||The garden of Yoyokaku about 100 years ago.
One snowy day.
|The Second Generation
Born in Kitahata Village as the first son
of Masataro and Tae.
Moved to Mitsushima with his
his younger brother Sota in the
(Sota reserved the mountains
and the forest
of cedars of the family's property.)
Masao was elected as a member
of the village
council and later a member of
Worked for the consolidation
of Karatsu Town
and Mitsushima Village.
Died at 47 of age.
Born in Karatsu Town as the first
of Yonetaro and Misa Tsutsumi.
Got married to Masao when she
Gave birth to Mitsuyo when she was 17, and
five years later had another daughter. The
girl lived only ten days, and Ine also died
some time later.
She was beautiful, said the older people
of the relatives.
||One of the buildings of Taisho Era Yoyokaku.
This has not been changed except the windows
and the roof tiles.
||At Masao's funeral, hundreds of village people
walked in a line to see Masao off.
Mitsuyo, the daughter, wore pure white silk
mourning kimono, just like the one which
brides wear these days.
|The Third Generation
Born as the first child of Masao
When Mitsuyo was 5, Mother died. Father got
Grandmother Tae brought her up.
Mitsuyo married Hitoshi Nagai and had 5 boys
and 1 girl. Many people in town say that
she was so beautiful. Grandmother let her
learn Noh, Tea ceremony, flower arrangement,
She died at 45.
Born in Yobuko Village as the
first son of
Isogoro and Gen Nagai.
Studied commerce in a college
He was the successor of Nagai Family, but
he left his house to pursue his romance with
He was the strict chief of the
of the district.
He was a fan of Sumo and was always a champion
||Isogoro and Gen Nagai
Parents of Hitoshi Okochi.
Isogoro owned a Sake brewery in Yobuko Village.
Since the first son Hitoshi left the house,
the second son succeeded the household.
|The Forth Generation
||Showa - Heisei Eras
Akihiko (Den) Okochi
Born in 1934 as the third son of Hitoshi
and Mitsuyo Okochi. The eldest brother was
a bureaucrat, and the second brother did
not want to take over the business. So Akihiko
trained himself at Fujiya Hotel in Hakone
and succeeded Yoyokaku.
Born in 1944 as the second daughter of Hatsushi
and Sumiko Yamaguchi. Sumiko is 86 years
old, and lives nearby.
Harumi is the narrator of the
Okochi family today.
But the pine tree before us, about 200 years
old, might be the true story teller.
||Masayasu Okochi and Naho Okochi
Masayasu was born in 1972.
Married Naho Hayashi in 2000.
Masayasu works for a bank in Fukuoka.
The fifth generation?
To be, or not to be.That is the question.
||One snowy day in early 2003.
||Mitsushima is now called Higashi (east) Karatsu. But
I prefer the old name, because names of the
lands tell us the history.
One fine winter day.
The left water is the sea, and the right
water is the river.Two waters meet in front.
This photo was taken from the
top of the
Mitsushima has been always beautiful,
will be forever.