Matsui Okinaga (松井興長)

Okinaga MATSUI (1582 - 1661) was a person who lived during the Azuchi-Momoyama period and the Edo period. He was a retainer of the Hosokawa clan since the era of Yusai HOSOKAWA.
He was the lord of the Yatsushiro-jo Castle in Kumamoto (Officially Chamberlain at Yatsushiro-jo Castle.)
(Before that, Tadaoki lived the Yatsushiro-jo Castle after his retirement). His father was Yasuyuki MATSUI. His Seishitsu (legal wife) was Koho, a daughter of Tadaoki HOSOKAWA. He was Shikibu no taifu, Sado no kami (the governor of Sado Province).

Place of origin
The Matsui clan had served Ashikaga Shogun Family of the Muromachi Bakufu and lived in Kyoto. Since Shogun Yoshiteru ASHIKAGA was killed in the Eiroku Incident (1565), Yasuyuki MATSUI had been with Yusai HOSOKAWA, and later Yasuyuki became a retainer of Yusai.

In the Sengoku period (period of warring states), the Hosokawa family became the feudal lord of Tango Province, and Karo (chief retainer) Yasuyuki was assigned to keep the Matsukura-jo Castle in Tango Province. Although Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI, who recognized the way the Matsui family worked, made an offer Yasuyuki a position of Daimyo (feudal lord) of a half of Iwami Province with 180,000 Goku crop yields, Yasuyuki declined the offer due to his wish to continue to serve the Hosokawa family. However, an incident happened. The Hosokawa clan was suspected by Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI of being involved in a rebellion of Kanpaku (chief adviser to the Emperor), Hidetsugu TOYOTOMI. Owing to Yasuyuki MATSUI's hard work with regard to demands for the repayment of a debt owed to Hidetsugu and in acting as a matchmaker in seeking a husband for a daughter of Tadaoki (who was married to a relative of Hidetsugu) called Ocho, the situation didn't become serious, though. Okinaga was the second son of this Yasuyuki. As a token of his gratitude, Tadaoki HOSOKAWA made his daughter Koho (11 years old) marry Okinaga.

In the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600, the Hosokawa family took part in battles in three regions of Sekigahara, Tango Tanabe-jo Castle and Bungo Kitsuki-jo Castle, but Okinaga, following Tadaoki, went on an expedition against Aizu and to the Sekigahara battle field. Due to his injury in an attack on Gifu-jo Castle, he did not take part in the Sekigahara battle. While Tadaoki HOSOKAWA became a Daimyo (feudal lord) of Buzen Province and Bungo Province (present Fukuoka Prefecture and part of Oita Prefecture) with over 390,000 Goku crop yields after the war, Yasuyuki MATSUI was assigned to keep the Kitsuki (Kitsuki)-jo Castle in Bungo Province and given a Daimyo-class territory of Five thousands Goku crop yields.

Career of Okinaga MATSUI
Sado MATSUI, or Okinaga MATSUI was born in 1582 as the second son of Yasuyuki in Kumihama, Tango Province. As his elder brother, Okiyuki was killed in battle in the Japan's Invasion of Korea, he became the heir of the MATSUI family and succeeded to the Matsui family property in 1611 when his father, Yasuyuki went into retirement. Five autograph letters of Tadataka HOSOKAWA, who was the heir of the Hosokawa family at the time of the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600, addressed to Okinaga MATSUI (Shintaro) exist in Matsui Bunko library.

When the Hosokawa family was transferred from the fief of Buzen and Bungo provinces to that of Kumamoto Domain, Higo Province in 1632, Okinaga was given a territory of Thirty thousands Goku crop yields in Tamana and Koshi counties.

When the Shimabara Rebellion took place in 1637, he was busily engaged in dispatching arrangements of troops and negotiations with Bakufu and other Domains by the order of Tadatoshi HOSOKAWA, the lord of the Domain, and went into battle leading his own troops of over 3,700 soldiers in the battle of the Hara-jo Castle.

After Tadaoki (Sansai) HOSOKAWA who had been the lord of the Yatsushiro-jo Castle died in 1645, Okinaga came to keep the Yatsushiro-jo Castle in 1646. The Yatsushiro-jo Castle remained as an exception of Ikkoku Ichijo Rei (Law of One Castle per Province), and the MATSUI family kept the Castle for generations as the load.

Okinaga adopted the sixth son of Tadaoki (Yoriyuki HOSOKAWA) as an heir and was given the surname of Nagaoka, another surname of Hosokawa, and assumed the name of Nagaoka-Sado-no-kami. Okinaga supported the Hosokawa Clan by serving four different heads of the clan (Tadaoki HOSOKAWA, Tadatoshi, Mitsunao HOSOKAWA and Tsunatoshi HOSOKAWA) in the years since he first went into battle at the age of 19 in 1600 until his death at the age of 80. Until the Meiji period, the MATSUI family kept the position of the Hitto karo (the head of chief retainers) for generations as a blood relative of the Hosokawa family. The head of the Matsui family can be described as being essentially a daimyo-class lord of the Yatsushiro branch domain who had a stipend of 30,000 koku in Higo Province during his time as a retainer to the Hosokawa family.

At the Yatsushiro Municipal Museum and the Matsui Bunko library in Yatsushiro City, Kumamoto Prefecture, there are many of historical materials of the Matsui family for generations, which survived the air raid in the World War II, and the work is proceeding with these materials