Uesugi Shrine was built in 1876 where the inner citadel of Yonezawa Castle once stood. It originally enshrined both Uesugi Kenshin and Uesugi Yōzan.
Then, in 1902, Uesugi Shrine was changed to enshrine Uesugi Kenshin only. From that point on, an auxiliary shrine called Matsugasaki Shrine was built to enshrine Uesugi Yōzan.
A large fire occurred in Yonezawa in 1919, burning down most of the shrine. The city received monetary assistance from the government afterwards, and with citizens volunteering to help with construction, the version of the shrine that stands to this day was completed in 1923.
The shrine was designed by Itō Chūta, who was a Yonezawa native and a leading figure in shrine architecture at the time.
Today, the shrine is a beloved spot in Yonezawa, being visited throughout the year for prayers and celebrate traditional events.
Keishoden, which houses many cultural assets related to the Uesugi clan, is also located on the shrine grounds. The Yonezawa City Uesugi Museum is also nearby. A ceremony is held here yearly on April 29. The Yonezawa Uesugi Festival and the Uesugi Snow Lantern Festival are held at the shrine.
Beautiful cherry blossom trees bloom around shrine in spring.