Taipei Film House
|Taipei Film House|
|Location||Zhongshan, Taipei, Taiwan|
|Completed||8 December 1926|
|Opening||10 November 2002|
|Floor area||375 square feet (34.8 m2)|
|Design and construction|
|Main contractor||Taiwan Real Estate Co., Ltd.|
Empire of Japan
At the end of the 19th century, flourishing commerce in tea and camphor led many Western foreign countries such as the United States, the Netherlands, and Britain to establish consulates and trade offices in the Dadaocheng district of Taihoku Prefecture. The United States built its consulate at this location during the Japanese rule in 1926 as the American Consulate in Taihoku. Following World War II, it served as the US Ambassador's residence. Ambassadors Karl L. Rankin, Everett F. Drumright, Alan G. Kirk, Jerauld Wright, Walter P. McConaughy and Leonard S. Unger all made this building their home. It now stands as an historic witness to relations between Taipei and Washington, D.C.
In 1913, seeing that Taiwan's strategic position was gradually becoming more important, the U.S. government upgraded their offices in Taiwan.
Republic of China
After the handover of Taiwan from Japan to the Republic of China on 25 October 1945, the United States established its consulate at the building on 4 April 1946. In 1948, it was upgraded to a consulate-general and handled American business in Taiwan at the present address in Taipei's Zhongshan District. The first appointee to be stationed as consul general at the consulate was Robert Strong.
In 1950, the Korean War broke out, the United States again started aiding the Republic of China. In addition, ambassador was accredited to the Republic of China.
On 1 January 1979, the United States switched diplomatic relations from the Republic of China to the People's Republic of China and subsequently the American Institute in Taiwan was established on 16 January 1979 to maintain non-diplomatic relations with Taiwan. The US embassy in Taipei was closed on 28 February 1979 and the building was left abandoned.
On 20 February 1997, the building was listed as historic monument by the government of the Republic of China. In 2000, the Taipei City Government and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company under the Cultural and Educational Foundation began renovating the building. The building now houses the Taipei Film House.
The building is a two-story mansion with white exterior wall with Victorian and American colonial style. The main hallway faces north with jutting veranda on its east side. The interior layout is designed around the central staircase.
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