Sat, Aug 06, 2011 - Page 13 News List

Emperor Hirohito visited Tainan as Crown Prince

Salt field workers sweep up drying salt at the salt fields in An-shun, Tainan, in this undated photo.

Photo: Obtained by tsai wen-chu, taipei times

In April of 1923, when the Japanese had ruled Taiwan for nearly three decades, Crown Prince Hirohito, who would become emperor of the “Land of the Rising Sun” three years later, took an imperial trip to southern Taiwan to visit the massive salt fields in the Anping and Anshun areas of Tainan City. Anshun was a village known for its 500-hectare stretch of salt fields. Family members of the first director of the Anshun salt works provided several old photographs and newspaper clippings from that time that prove Hirohito indeed visited the salt fields.

Yeh Tse-shan, director of Tainan’s Cultural Affairs Bureau, also says that Hirohito once visited the salt works in Anshun, which has now become the Salt Pan Eco-Village. Yeh said Hirohito spent two days in Tainan in April of 1923 during his imperial trip to Taiwan from April 16 to 26, making stops at the salt fields in Anping and Anshun, and at National Cheng Kung University and several other schools. He also stayed in what was then the Tainan governor’s residence for one evening.

The Cultural Affairs Bureau said several of the sites along the route the crown prince took during his visit are now important cultural assets for Taiwan. The places Hirohito visited and the events that occured during his visit are now very important for Taiwan both historically and culturally.

Lee Shan-shan, a manager at Salt Pan Eco-Village, said that Yoshino Nobuyuki, the son of the Anshun salt works’ first director, had a photograph of Hirohito, his father, and other people that was taken at the salt fields. The photo was given to the Salt Pan Eco-Village and is currently part of the Taiwan Salt Museum’s collection. Yoshino also found newspapers verifying Hirohito’s visit, which proves that the rumors were true, he really did visit the salt fields.


1. posthumously adv.

於死後 (yu2 si3 hou4)

例: There are rumors that some of Amy Winehouse’s music will be released posthumously.


2. decorate v.

授給勳章 (shou4 gei3 xun1 zhang1)

例: She is a decorated veteran.


3. succeed v.

繼任 (ji4 ren4)

例: After the queen died she was succeeded by her daughter.


The word Showa is the name of the era that corresponded with the Emperor’s reign; thus, he was posthumously called Emperor Showa. Born in 1901, Hirohito was only 22 years old when he came to Taiwan. The crown prince was decorated with the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Chrysanthemum in 1912. He succeeded to the throne as emperor after his father died on the 15th and final year of the Taisho period in 1926 and died in 1989.

(Liberty Times, Translated by Taijing Wu)







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