The second son of Nagao Tamekage who was born in 1530 in Echigo no Kuni (modern day Niigata).
He is known by his birth name of Torachiyo. At age 15, he underwent the ceremony of manhood and in 1553 became the feudal lord of Echigo no Kuni.
In 1561, he became the head of the Uesugi clan at the request of Uesugi Norimasa.
Uesugi Kenshin’s skill as a war tactician and strength as a commander is recognized even today, and he is celebrated as one of the great leaders of the Warring States period.
Uesugi Kenshin was only 49 years old when he passed away in 1578. His preserved remains were later moved to Yonezawa from Aizu by Uesugi Kagekatsu, his adoptive son. These remains were originally held within Yonezawa castle, but they were subsequently moved to the Uesugi Mausoleum after 1876. To this day, Uesugi Kenshin’s grave remains the pride of the people of Yonezawa.