The tomb’s existence was confirmed during road construction in 1950 on the southern side of the mound. Then in March 1972,
immediately after news was announced of the discovery of murals at Takamatsuzuka Tumulus, the presence nearby of a similar tomb was made known by local residents, which led to its excavation. People of that area called it “Kitora.”
Kitora Tumulus was introduced to archaeology in 1981.
The following year, the Archaeological Research Institute at Kansai University made the first topographical survey of the tomb and the surrounding area.
In 1996, Asuka village established the Conservation Committee for Kitora Tumulus. This subsequently carried out the production of topographical maps and a survey of the local vegetation, and an investigation to verify the extent of the tomb.