The name “Funabashi” comes from the ancient custom of lining boats along the Ebi River to form a bridge. “Funabashi” means “bridge of boats.”
From ancient times people have inhabited the Boso peninsula, but the exact date when they first settled there is unknown. However, the discovery of stone tools in Fujiwara-cho indicates that people were already living in Funabashi in the pre-earthenware era (5000 BCE).
In the 15th century the Funabashi Dai-Jingu (shrine) was constructed. This also led to the establishment of a colorful and thriving market.
In the 17th century, the Sakura Road ran through Funabashi from Edo (Tokyo) to the shrine at Narita. Funabashi was established as a post town in the 18th century and in the following century its present transportation system began to develop.
In the 20th century (1937), several villages and towns consolidated to become a city, the fourth largest suburban area in Chiba prefecture. A mammoth reclamation project was begun n 1956 to provide room for the now-famous seaside industrial park.
Because of its convenient location and transportation, Funabashi’s population has continued to grow, exceeding 623,000 by 2017.