Here lies the grave of Sagara Ichirobē Fujiwara no Nagamasa, a shogunate administrator from the Satsuma Domain who was stationed in Edo (modern-day Tokyo), and whose life was dramatised in the NHK series Atsuhime (which ran from January 1st to December 4th, 2008).
In 1849 (Kaei 2), the Satsuma Domain was faced with a crisis of succession, known as either Oyura Sōdō or Takazaki Kuzure, in which the Shimazu Clan was split into two quarrelling factions.
In the quarrel’s aftermath, the husband of the Shimazu heir’s younger sister (who was stationed under Shimazu Naoki, a daimyō of the Satsuma Domain in Edo, the capital of the shogunate), Sagara Ichirobē Fujiwara no Nagamasa, was sentenced to exile on an isolated island, and thus made his way here, to Hirauchi.
His sentence of secluded exile was rare for the time, and especially more so that the location was here on Yakushima. As such, he became a relatively historically significant figure. Locally, he was called “Dannajii”, and also raised two foster children.
It is said that the high number of households with the name “Sagara” in Hirauchi is a result of his lineage and patronage.