Umegatani Tōtarō I

Last updated
Umegatani Tōtarō I
梅ヶ谷 藤太郎
Umegatani Totaro I.gif
Personal information
BornTōtarō Oe
(1845-03-16)March 16, 1845
Asakura, Fukuoka, Japan
DiedMay 15, 1928(1928-05-15) (aged 83)
Height1.76 m (5 ft 9 12 in)
Weight105 kg (231 lb)
Stable Ikazuchi
18 draws-2 holds(Makuuchi)
DebutMarch, 1871
Highest rankYokozuna (February, 1884)
RetiredMay, 1885
Championships 9 (Makuuchi, unofficial)
* Up to date as of September 2007.

Umegatani Tōtarō I (梅ヶ谷 藤太郎, March 16, 1845 – May 15, 1928) was a sumo wrestler from Asakura, Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan. He was the sport's 15th yokozuna. He was generally regarded as the strongest wrestler to emerge since the era of Tanikaze and Raiden.

Sumo full-contact wrestling sport

Sumo is a form of competitive full-contact wrestling where a rikishi (wrestler) attempts to force his opponent out of a circular ring (dohyō) or into touching the ground with any body part other than the soles of his feet.

Asakura, Fukuoka City in Kyushu, Japan

Asakura is a city located in south central Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan, on Kyūshū Island.

Fukuoka Prefecture Prefecture of Japan

Fukuoka Prefecture is a prefecture of Japan on Kyūshū Island. The capital is the city of Fukuoka. As of 2018, it is the ninth most populated prefecture in Japan.



Umegatani entered Osaka sumo in 1863 and was promoted to ōzeki in 1870. He wasn't content with the rank and so gave it up. He transferred to Tokyo sumo in December 1870, and began his career over again from the bottom of the rankings. [1] Umegatani won 58 bouts in a row from January 1876 to January 1881. It is the fourth best record of consecutive victories behind Futabayama, Tanikaze and Hakuhō. He was awarded a yokozuna licence in February 1884, receiving it simultaneously from both the Osaka and Tokyo based organisations. Emperor Meiji took pleasure in seeing his bout on March 10, 1884. The event helped to make sumo more famous among the people of Japan. He won 116 bouts and lost only 6 bouts in the top makuuchi division. [2] He achieved a winning average of 95.1, the highest record among yokozuna, [3] though could not surpass ōzeki Raiden. He was not a particularly large wrestler but was remarkably strong. [2]

Osaka Designated city in Kansai, Japan

Osaka is a designated city in the Kansai region of Japan. It is the capital city of Osaka Prefecture and the largest component of the Keihanshin Metropolitan Area, the second largest metropolitan area in Japan and among the largest in the world with over 19 million inhabitants. Osaka will host Expo 2025. The current mayor of Osaka is Hirofumi Yoshimura.

Tokyo Metropolis in Kantō

Tokyo, officially Tokyo Metropolis, one of the 47 prefectures of Japan, has served as the Japanese capital since 1869. As of 2018, the Greater Tokyo Area ranked as the most populous metropolitan area in the world. The urban area houses the seat of the Emperor of Japan, of the Japanese government and of the National Diet. Tokyo forms part of the Kantō region on the southeastern side of Japan's main island, Honshu, and includes the Izu Islands and Ogasawara Islands. Tokyo was formerly named Edo when Shōgun Tokugawa Ieyasu made the city his headquarters in 1603. It became the capital after Emperor Meiji moved his seat to the city from Kyoto in 1868; at that time Edo was renamed Tokyo. Tokyo Metropolis formed in 1943 from the merger of the former Tokyo Prefecture and the city of Tokyo. Tokyo is often referred to as a city but is officially known and governed as a "metropolitan prefecture", which differs from and combines elements of a city and a prefecture, a characteristic unique to Tokyo.

Futabayama Sadaji Sumo Wrestler head of the Japan Sumo Association

Futabayama Sadaji, born as Akiyoshi Sadaji in Oita Prefecture, Japan, was the 35th yokozuna in sumo wrestling, from 1937 until 1945. He won twelve yūshō or top division championships and had a winning streak of 69 consecutive bouts, an all-time record. Despite his dominance he was extremely popular with the public. After his retirement he was head coach of Tokitsukaze stable and chairman of the Japan Sumo Association.

Retirement from sumo

After his retirement he remained in the sumo world as a coach under the name Ikazuchi Oyakata. He helped to raise funds for the building of the first Ryōgoku Kokugikan stadium in 1909. It is said that when asked by a potential backer what he had in the way of collateral, simply showing his muscles was enough to clinch the deal. [4]

Ryōgoku Kokugikan building

Ryōgoku Kokugikan, also known as Ryōgoku Sumo Hall, is an indoor sporting arena located in the Yokoami neighborhood of Sumida, one of the 23 wards of Tokyo in Japan, next to the Edo-Tokyo Museum. It is the third building built in Tokyo associated with the name kokugikan. The current building was opened in 1985 and has a capacity of 11,098 people. It is mainly used for sumo wrestling tournaments (honbasho) and hosts the Hatsuhonbasho in January, the Natsu (summer) honbasho in May, and the Aki (autumn) honbasho in September. It also houses a museum about sumo. The venue is also used for other indoor events, such as boxing, pro wrestling, and music concerts. In past years, it has hosted the finals of New Japan Pro Wrestling's annual G1 Climax tournament as well as the Invasion Attack and King of Pro-Wrestling events and the WWE's The Beast in the East event in 2015.

In lending agreements, collateral is a borrower's pledge of specific property to a lender, to secure repayment of a loan. The collateral serves as a lender's protection against a borrower's default and so can be used to offset the loan if the borrower fails to pay the principal and interest satisfactorily under the terms of the lending agreement.

He lived until the age of eighty-three, making him the longest-lived yokozuna of all time. He outlived his son-in-law Umegatani II, and is one of very few yokozuna to have died of old age. [2]

Top division record

Umegatani [5]

Not held





1d 1h







1882Sat outWestŌzeki



Record given as win-loss-absent    Top Division Champion Retired Lower Divisions

Key:   d=Draw(s) (引分);   h=Hold(s) (預り);   nr=no result recorded
Divisions: Makuuchi Jūryō Makushita Sandanme Jonidan Jonokuchi

Makuuchi ranks: 
Yokozuna (not ranked as such on banzuke until 1890)
Ōzeki Sekiwake Komusubi Maegashira

*Championships for the best record in a tournament were not recognized or awarded before the 1909 summer tournament and the above unofficial championships are historically conferred. For more information see yūshō.


This article is about the sports award. For the 1968 mass poisoning in Japan by PCBs, see Yushō disease

See also

Glossary of sumo terms Wikimedia list article

The following words are terms used in sumo wrestling in Japan.

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  1. Schilling, Mark (1994). Sumo: A Fan's Guide. Japan Times. ISBN   4-7890-0725-1.
  2. 1 2 3 Newton, Clyde (1994). Dynamic Sumo. Kodansha. p. 56. ISBN   4-7700-1802-9.
  3. Kuroda, Joe (February 2006). "A Shot At the Impossible-Yokozuna Comparison Through The Ages". Retrieved 2008-06-22.
  4. Sharnoff, Lora (1993). Grand Sumo. Weatherhill. ISBN   0-8348-0283-X.
  5. "Umegatani Totaro Rikishi Information". Sumo Reference. Retrieved 2007-09-27.
Preceded by
Sakaigawa Namiemon
15th Yokozuna
Succeeded by
Nishinoumi Kajirō I
Yokozuna is not a successive rank, and more than one wrestler can share the title