National Tsing Hua University opens Hsinchu exhibition

By Hung Mei-hsiu and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Sat, Sep 01, 2018 - Page 3

National Tsing Hua University yesterday opened an exhibition on the history of Hsinchu as the city celebrates its 300th anniversary.

The exhibition, which runs through the end of next month, is hosted by the university museum and contains more than 1,000 items — including documents and paintings — donated by university professor Yang Rur-bin (楊儒賓), museum director Ma Meng-ching (馬孟晶) said.

The pieces on display span three periods of Taiwanese history: the Qing Dynasty, the Japanese colonial period and post-World War II rule by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), Ma said.

The historical diversity helps define the history and cultural development of the Hsinchu area, Ma said.

A timeline of regional history — beginning with colonization efforts near modern-day Lungen Ditch (隆恩圳) by Wang Shijie (王世傑) in 1718 — is on display, Ma said, adding that there is also a fragment of an original land deed dating to the fourth year of Emperor Guangxu (光緒) in 1888.

“From such artifacts, we are made aware of changes to the land — both geographically and administratively — while other pieces, such as poetry and paintings, show the results of the then-gentry and learned individuals attempting to preserve traditional arts and literature,” she said.

A replica of a map, made just after the First Sino-Japanese War in 1894, that depicts a more “slender” Taiwan is also featured, as well as copies of calligraphy by the nation’s first governor after it was made a province in 1885, Ma said.

The end of the war saw the Treaty of Shimonoseki signed and the annexation of Taiwan by the Japanese Empire.

Other pieces on exhibit offer a glimpse into why Shibajianshan (十八尖山) became a battlefield during the resistance to Japanese rule, Ma said.

Hsinchu, as well as Chiayi, are important administrative areas in Taiwan’s history and visitors are welcome to visit the university museum and learn about the city’s rich history, she said.