Tuesday, January 26, 2010

A visit to Fort Provintia

Fort Provintia was built by the Dutch East India Company in 1653.  In 1945, it was renamed "Red-topped Tower" (赤崁樓), pronouced "Chi-kan" Tower which sounds like the Taiwanese aboriginal name for this area, "Saccam."  Forts built by the Dutch were essential for the colonization of the island.  Under Dutch colonial law and protection from aboriginal attacks, the Chinese immigrants flourished in farming the fertile land.  The Dutch in turn taxed the Chinese immigrants to make Taiwan one of their most profitable colonies.  Note the sign below called the Dutch occupiers but not the Chinese, which is a Chinese-centric revision of history.  Both are occupiers.

Fort Provintia was not well-kept over the centuries.  The current buildings have been rebuilt with Chinese-styled building during the late 19th Century.  The model above shows the original Dutch design.

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