Otsukegaro (a governmental post in the Edo bakufu, or a person or persons in the post) (御附家老)
Otsukegaro is a karo (chief retainer) in the early Edo bakufu period who, when kikoshi (a young nobleman) in the linage of the Tokugawa Shogun family became the lord of a domain (daimyo), was appointed directly by Seii taishogun (literally, "the great general who was to subdue the barbarians") for serving the lord. In the Edo period, the character of "御" (indicating a honorific expression) was added to its head, because this karo was appointed by Shogun, but today the more simple term of Tsukegato is used more often instead. As many as more than ten persons were sometimes appointed to the post, but ordinarily this term was used for indicating the head of these karo. In particular, five Tsukegaro at the Tokugawa gosanke families (three privileged Tokugawa branch families) are famous.
Tsukegaro assisted the lord in political affairs and in military affairs, and was also responsible for bringing up the lord. Therefore, the feature of the status were more those of an inspector under the direct supervision of Shogun than those of a retainer of a lord. Over time, the concept of Tsukegaro came to depend on each domain and each Tsukegaro family. It appears that some Tsukegaro served faithfully to the lord and confronted the shogun family, and others confronted the lord unnecessarily or engaged in factional strife in the domain.
In the Owari-Tokugawa family
The Hiraiwa clan (in the Inuyama domain, with a 120,000 koku of rice crop)
Chikayoshi HIRAIWA was appointed to Tsukegaro to Yoshinao TOKUGAWA on 26th of April, 1607 (in the old calendar). Chikayoshi died on the last day of December of 1611, and because he had no heir, his properties were confiscated.
The TAKEKOSHI clan (in the Imao domain, with a 38,000 koku of rice crop)
Masanobu TAKEKOSHI was appointed to Tsukegaro to Yoshinao TOKUGAWA in 1619. On the January 24, 1868, Masatomo TAKETOSHI, the tenth Takekoshi clan head was recognized as a daimyo by the Meiji government.
The Naruse clan (in the Inuyaka domain, with a 35,000 koku of rice crop)
Masanari NARUSE was appointed to Tsukegaro to Yoshinao TOKUGAWA in 1616. On the January 24, 1868, Masamitsu Naruse, the ninth Naruse clan head was recognized as a daimyo by the Meiji government.
In the Kii-Tokugawa family
The Mikawa-Ando clan (in the Kii-Tanabe domain, with a 38,000 koku of rice crop)
Naotsugu ANDO was appointed to Tsukegaro to Yorinobu TOKUGAWA on July 19, 1619 (in the old calendar). On the January 24, 1868 (in the old calendar), Naohiro ANDO, the 16th Ando clan head was recognized as a daimyo by the Meiji government.
The Mizuno clan (in the Kii-Shingu domain, with a 35,000 koku of rice crop)
Shigenaka MIZUNO was appointed to Tsukegaro to Yorinobu TOKUGAWA on July 19, 1619 (in the old calendar). On the January 24, 1868, Tadamoto MIZUNO (the lord of the Kii-Shingu domain), the tenth Mizuno clan head was recognized as a daimyo by the Meiji government.
In the Mito-Tokugawa family
The Nakayama clan (Hitachi-Matsuoka -> Hitachi-Ota -> the Hitachi-Matsuoka domain (Tazuna), with a 25,000 koku of rice crop)
The Mizuno clan (in the Awa/Kazusa province, with the amount of rice crop unknown)
Wakenaga MIZUNO became Tsukegaro to Yorifusa TOKUGAWA. Wakenaga died in 1623, and because he had no heir, his properties were confiscated.
Otsukegaro other than those at the gosanke families
The Honda clan (in Echizen-fuchu (present Echizen City), with a 39,000 koku of rice crop)
Tomimasa HONDA (a nephew of Shigetsugu HONDA) became the Tsukegaro of the 680,000-koku Echizen domain of Hideyasu YUKI, a son of Ieyasu TOKUGAWA. Until the end of the bakufu after that, he managed the governmental affairs of the domain as the head Karo of the Echizen family. It is also said that initially, Onisakuza, or Shigetsugu HONDA, himself, or his son was desired for the post, but he recommended his nephew (whose father had died and was brought up by Shigetsugu) instead because he disliked for being handled as a baishin (a retainer of a shogun's direct retainer). When a Kaieki punishment (forfeit rank of Samurai and properties) was administered to Tadanao MATSUDAIRA, he was wanted for the position of an independent daimyo. However, he firmly declined to become officially independent saying that he was under an obligation of the Mtsudaira family (Hideyasu, the first lord of the domain). On the other hand, he was treated as a daimyo in the bakufu. For example, in the Daimyo-gyoretsu procession (feudal lord's costumed procession) in the Sankinkotai system (a system under which feudal lords in the Edo period were required to spend every other year in residence in Edo), he was allowed to pass sekisho (checking stations) with his long sword being held up or without getting off his palanquin, and he waited in the willow room (together with other daimyo ranked at Shii (the fourth rank) or lower).
An Edo residence was bestowed on him by the bakufu in Asakusa (later Honjo)
In the celebrating or morning occasions at the shogun family, he made presents together with other daimyo. When he worked in Edo, it was customary that he presented himself in front of the shogun and received a present from the shogun, showing that he was treated almost as an independent daimyo. However, in the Haihan-chiken reform (abolition of feudal domains and establishment of prefectures), the Honda family was treated as a baishin (a retainer of shogun's retainer) and was designated as shizoku (family or person with samurai ancestors). Being reluctant to accept this situation, people in his former territory and his former retainers caused the Takefu disturbance in 1870, and he was included in Kazoku (peerage) in 1879, being awarded the status of baron in 1884.
The Honda clan (in Echizen-Maruoka, with a 40,000 koku of rice crop)
Narishige HONDA (a son of Shigetsugu HONDA), who had earned a 5,000 koku of rice crop as a shogun's retainer, became Tsukegato to Tadanao MATSUDAIRA (the lord of the 750,000-koku Fukui domain) in 1613, supported young Tadanao together with Tomimasa HONDA, and played an important role, for example, in Osaka no Eki (The Siege of Osaka)
According to a theory, it is also said that, seeing that his nephew whom he recommended for the post was successful, Shigetugu had his son occupy the post as well forcibly (therefore, his son earned slightly more amount of rice crop than Tomimasa, though having gotten the post later). When a kaieki punishment was administered to Tadanao and he was exiled, Narishishige (in the Maruoka domain) became an independent daimyo.
Ogasawara clan (in Owari-Inuyama, with a 10,000 koku of rice crop)
Kichiji Ogasawara became a Tsukegaro to Tadayoshi MATSUDAIRA (in the 520,000-koku Kiyosu domain) in November of 1600 (in the old calendar). Tadayoshi died on April 1, 1607, and because he had no heir, his properties was confiscated. Therefore, Kichiji's territory was changed to the Sakura domain on June 23, 1607, becoming a daimyo.
The Nomi-Matsudaira family (in the Sanjo domain, with a 20,000 koku of rice crop)
Shigekatsu MATSUDAIRA became a Tsukegaro to Tadateru MATSUDAIRA (in the 600,000-koku Takada domain) in 1614. Tadateru's properties were confiscated due to his misconducts on August 17, 1616. Therefore, Shigekatsu's territory was changed to the Sekiyado domain in December of 1617 (in the old calendar), becoming a daimyo.
The Torii clan (in the Yamura domain, with a 35,000 koku of rice crop)
Naritsugu Torii became a Tsukegaro to Tadanaga TOKUGAWA (in the 200,000-koku Kofu domain -> the 500,000-koku Sumpu domain) in 1616. The properties of Tadafusa TORII, the second Torii clanhead, was confiscated on December 9, 1632 due to having been implicated in Tadanaga's misconduct.
The Asakura clan (in the Kakegawa domain, with a 26,000 kaku of rice crop)
Nobumasa Asakura became a Tsukegaro to Tadanaga TOKUGAWA in 1624. His properties were confiscated in 1632 due to having been implicated in Tadanaga's misconduct.
The Inaba clan (in the Itoigawa domain, with a 20,000 koku of rice crop)
Masanari INABA became a Tsukegaro to Tadamasa MATSUDAIRA (in the 250,000-koku Echigo-Takada domain) in February of 1618 (in the old calendar). Because Masanari abandoned his post in1623, his properties were confiscated (later, becoming the daimyo of the 20,000-koku Maoka domain in February of 1627 (in the old calendar)).