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Ōedo Line: Higashi-Shinjuku & Wakamatsu-Kawada

In Japanese History on June 3, 2015 at 2:37 am

東新宿
Higashi Shinjuku (East Shinjuku)

station higashi shinjuku

This is just the station name. The area is actually called 新宿五丁目 Shinjuku Go-chōme 5th Block of Shinjuku. I don’t think I’ve ever gotten off at this station, but I imagine it’s just offices, restaurants, and apartments – nothing too exciting.

higashi shinjuku neighborhood

若松河田
Wakamatsu-Kawada

Wakamatsu

Wakamatsu

The station name is a combination of 2 town names: 若松町 Wakamatsu-chō Wakamatsu Town and 河田町 Kawada-chō Kawada Town. Wakamatsu-chō is said to derive from the 若松 wakamatsu young pine trees that were cut from this area and presented yearly to the shōgun family to decorate Edo Castle at 御正月 O-shōgatsu the New Year Holiday. Kawada-chō is said to derive from a swampy rice paddy in the area. The first kanji 河 kawa means river or stream. The second kanji 田 ta/da means rice paddy. Rice paddies need irrigation, ergo “Kawada.”

I’ve never visited the area, but from my understanding, it’s just a residential neighborhood with high rise apartments. Maybe there’s a convenience store or shrine in the area, but probably not much else.

Wakamatsu Kawada's claim to fame is apparently this big supermarket. Neat.

Wakamatsu Kawada’s claim to fame is apparently this big supermarket. Neat.

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This article is part of an ongoing series that starts here.

  1. “Wakamatsu-chō is said to derive from the 若松 wakamatsu young pine trees that were cut from this area and presented yearly to the shōgun family to decorate Edo Castle at 御正月 O-shōgatsu the New Year Holiday. ” Interesting parallel to European traditions. I haven’t found references which say if the Kadomatsu tradition is native to Japan or an import – do you happen to know?

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