Photo of USTDC courtesy of Les Duffin

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Burning Bridges Behind Me

Just kidding.  I'm not really burning anything but whenever I think of bridges my mind always seems to wander back to when that song was popular.  It's too late to turn back now.

I've written several times about the bridge that has been called the Hirohito Bridge, the Keelung River Bridge, and probably various other names that I've never heard.  I'm not obsessed with the structure or anything, but I crossed it so many times on my way to the Club 63 and elsewhere that it is very much a part of my Taipei memories.

The bridge that existed when I was there was built in 1923 for Japanese Emperor Hirohito's visit to the Taiwan Grand Shrine.  The shrine was located on the spot today occupied by the Grand Hotel.  You can see the bridge toward the bottom of this painting.


 The photo below is how it looked when I was at USTDC in the 1970s.


 I recently received a couple of images from a friend that show the previous bridge that spanned the river at that point.  I don't know if this was the original bridge or if there was another one there prior to this one.


Victor said...

I think the 3rd and the 4th photos are the Meiji Bridge(Hirohito Bridge) during 1901-33. Please notice the "30-6-17" in the post mark in the 4th photo. FYI 明治橋最初是鐵製桁架橋(1901年-1912年) 橋面木造 (Meiji Bridge was built in 1901. It was first a cast iron bridge with wooden floor.)
西元1912年 木造橋面改建成鐵筋混凝土橋面工程(In 1912, the wooden road was replaced by the concrete road.)
1923年 日本皇太子(昭和天皇)至台灣 路過明治橋不禁讚嘆(Hirohito visited Taiwan in 1923 and highly praised the elegance of the bridge.) Hirohito was the prince of Japan in 1923, and the reconstruction of the bridge took place actually in 1933.!PiOQzw6RGBLQumEjXbTEIXyxiaY-/article?mid=3483&prev=3486&next=-1 昭和8年(1933年)日本將明治橋改建以花崗岩製石橋(The bridge was reconstructed to a granite and RC arc bridge in 1933.)

Don said...

As always, Victor, thank you very much for clarifying things.