Mon, Dec 31, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Penghu office to preserve underwater heritage sites

Staff writer, with CNA

Officials open an underwater archeological work station in Magong City, Penghu County, on Wednesday last week.

Photo: CNA

The Cultural Heritage Bureau on Wednesday opened an underwater archeological work station in Penghu County to preserve and exhibit underwater cultural assets.

In 2013, before the promulgation of the Underwater Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (水下文化資產保存法) on Dec. 9, 2015, Academia Sinica was asked to conduct a survey of underwater cultural assets in the ocean around Taiwan, bureau Director-General Shy Gwo-long (施國隆) said.

More than a decade of efforts to record underwater cultural assets in the sea around Penghu had, as of September, led to the discovery of 87 shipwrecks of historical value, spanning from the Ming and Qing dynasties to the Japanese colonial era.

A multimedia exhibition, launched at the opening and running through November next year, showcases artifacts from British Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company steamship SS Bokhara, which sank near Penghu in a typhoon on Oct. 10, 1892.

The work station is housed in a building constructed in 1926 at the corner of Minzu and Jhongshan roads, close to the Port of Magong, an area that was first developed during the Japanese colonial era, the Penghu Cultural Affairs Bureau said.

The site was a post office under the Japanese and later became a combined post and telecommunications office, the bureau said, adding that the office and its staff were relocated to their current location on Jhongzheng Road in 1972.

The original building was designated a historical building in 2013, the bureau said.

The work station is to serve as a museum featuring underwater-related exhibitions to highlight Taiwan’s rich array of underwater cultural assets, the Penghu County Government said.

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