Remains of Taipei prison walls

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Coordinates: 25°1′58.02″N 121°31′36.59″E / 25.0327833°N 121.5268306°E / 25.0327833; 121.5268306

Remains of old Taipei Prison wall

The remains of Taipei prison walls (台北監獄) are located in Zhongzheng District, Taipei, Taiwan at the end of Aiguo Road and Jinshan South Road adjacent to the current Taipei operations center for Chunghwa Telecom. Approximately 100 meters of wall exist on both sides of the Chunghwa Telecom property. The walls were built during Japanese rule.

Background[edit]

Remains of old Taipei Prison gate

In response to continuous anti-Japanese uprisings throughout the early period of Japanese rule (1895–1945), the Japanese colonial government built large-scale prisons in Taihoku (modern-day Taipei) and Tainan to hold political prisoners. The remains of the Taihoku prison serve as a tangible witness to modern Taiwanese prison history.

The layout was based on a radial floor plan, a standard prison design of the 19th century. Although only the north face and portions of the south face survive, one may still perceive the heavy atmosphere of the punishments meted out here. The prison walls were made with stones from the Old Taipei City Wall, built by the Qing Dynasty at the end of the 19th century. The stones were carved completely by hand from the quartzose sandstone quarries in the Dazhi (大直) and Neihu areas of Taipei.

World War II Allied prisoners[edit]

During the period of 1944–1945, Allied airmen who had been shot down or crashed while on patrols over Taiwan were held in the Taipei Prison by the Japanese Army. On May 29, 1945, 14 of these allied airmen were given a 'mock trial' and sentenced to death. The execution took place inside the prison courtyard only 58 days before the end of World War II. When the war ended, the rest of the men were released and returned home.

Name Rank/Unit Home
J.C. Buchanan ARM 3c USN Guntersville, Alabama
Delbert H. Carter AOM 3c USN Eureka, California
Donald K. Hathaway AMM 3c USN Jackson Heights, New York
John R. Parker AMM 3c USN Dunedin, Florida
Wayne W. Wilson ARM 3c USN
Harry H. Aldro PO 2c USN San Francisco, California
James R. Langiotti PO 1c USN Orlando, Florida
Freddy McCreary ARM 1c USN Barber Hill, Kentucky
Charles E. McVay PO 2c USN Pine Bluff, Arkansas
Ralph R. Hartley Lieutenant USAAC Bridgewater, Maine
Bobby L. Lawrance Sgt USAAC Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Merlin W. Riggs Sgt USAAC Three Rivers, Michigan
Harwood S. Sharp Lieutenant (JG) USAAC Oakland, California
Harry U. Spivey Sgt USAAC Atlanta, Georgia

See also[edit]

External links[edit]