Rokunohe is a small agricultural town located in the south-eastern corner
of the Kamikita district of Aomori Prefecture. Aomori is the northern most
prefecture in Honshu, the biggest island in the Japanese archipelago. Situated
between the three cities of Towada, Misawa and Hachinohe, it also shares
borders with Touhoku-Town to the north, Oirase to the east, and to the
south, Gonohe. It occupies a total surface area of 84.06km2 .
Within Rokunohe, there are no major mountains or places of particular elevation or depression. The main water way is the famous Oirase River which flows from Lake Towada towards the sea to the east, passing just south of the town centre. Rice paddies and an assortment of other vegetable crop fields are spread out in abundance, particularly in the areas surrounding the Oirase River.
The climate is mild all year, and despite being situated in northern Japan,
thanks to the Hakkoda Mountain range which divides the prefecture and acts
to stop the heavy snow fall that comes off the Japan Sea, the town experiences
relatively little snow fall. The summers are also mild, with cool breezes
blowing in from the Pacific Ocean. The local weather report can be found
According to the October 2010 national census, the population of Rokunohe was 10,244.
After peaking in 1960, the population decreased at a rate of 10% for the 15 years up until 1975. This can be accounted for by Japan's high economic growth and the migration of school leavers and ex-farmers to the urban centres in search of work.
However, in the 15 years up until 1990, the town showed a 5% growth rate with a 515 person increase in population. The reasons for this reversal can be attributed to improvements in housing estates, the establishment of the Kanaya Industrial Complex. Concurrently, the changing attitudes of newly weds to seek local employment, new residents from urban areas, and the returning home of the sons of agricultural families, have all resulted in the reversal of the population decrease in Rokunohe.
The name Rokunohe was not originally that of a town. It is believed that
during the Kamakura Period (1185-1333), after the defeat of Iwate prefecture's
Fujiwara Clan in Hiraizumi, a distinguished Samurai, Nanbu Mitsuyuki, was
awarded the lands in southern Aomori and northern Iwate. For the breeding
and training of cavalry horses, 9 'HE' (戸) farms were established. Alternatively,
it has also been argued that their primary function was as strategic supply
bases, but whichever explanation is most accurate, part of the area through
which the Oirase River flows was named Rokunohe, the sixth 'HE' district.
Under the Meiji Restoration, the seven villages of Orimo, Yanagi, Kodaira, Tsurubami, Inuotose, Kami-Yoshida, and Shimo-Yoshida were merged into one to become Rokunohe Village in 1878. In 1957, Rokunohe was renamed as a town, with the 50th anniversary celebrated in 2007.
To represent the making of a bright and prosperous town, the 'HE' (戸) of
Rokunohe (六戸) has been incorporated into a symbol. The growth and prosperity
of each of the 'HE' towns is linked in this symbol.
Created October 1, 1960.
Yama-Zakura (Wild Cherry Tree)
Town Mascot Character:
Last updated 2013.04.01