The origins date back to 1953, where the location of the Okumizuma Onsen was just a field for crops deep in the mountains. The landowner, Mr. Okuno, was tending to his land during the winter and he spotted children playing in the rivers located next to nearby rice fields. He called out to them, asking the children whether they were cold, but they responded that they were quite warm playing in the waters during the winter months. He decided to investigate and indeed, the water was quite warm. A quality inspection revealed that natural hot spring water was bubbling through into the river.
Mr. Okuno decided to dig into his land and create a hot spring, but it was not initially used for tourism purposes. He originally created the onsen as a recreational center for retired soldiers, as well as the sick and injured. It was believed that the hot spring water infused into the river has healing properties, and was used by soldiers wounded in the Battle of Sekigahara—a decisive battle that would mark the end of decades of civil strife—in 1600.
Around 1955, the onsen was converted into a resort for tourism purposes. In subsequent years, it changed hands several times, and came to be called Okumizuma Onsen. After the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in 1995, the main building and the annex underwent a major renovation. They remain unchanged to this day.