Photo of USTDC courtesy of Les Duffin

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Taichung Area MAAG

Today's entry is much longer than what I usually post here, but there was no practical way to space the material out over several days.  Besides, this is the first real posting I've done for quite some time.  Enjoy.

COL Thomas Baker kindly provided us these materials:  a photo of his father, Sergeant First Class Archie Baker, (retired as a Sergeant Major) standing outside the Taichung Club 36 NCO Club;  a welcome booklet compiled by the wives club of the Taichung Area MAAG;  the appreciation letters to the wives club; photo and farewell thank you card from the MAAG Area Commander, COL Arnold;  and lastly, a photo of COL Baker standing by the old location of the US Naval Hospital (photo taken July 24, 2010).

His father, Archie Baker, was stationed in Taiwan with the US MAAG at the Taichung MAAG Area Command from 1959-1962.

The photo shows his father standing outside the Taichung US NCO Club 36. SFC Baker was the NCO Club manager.

The MAAG Taichung, Taiwan newcomers welcome booklet was also provided by COL Baker.  His mother was a member of the wives club that assisted in the development of this booklet.  After the cover is a listing of pages from the booklet.  Just click on each to view a larger version.



The following memorandums are the appreciation letters from the US MAAG Chief and US Ambassador to the Taichung MAAG Area Commander, which were then forwarded to members of the wives club.

Farewell letter and photo of COL Arnold, the Taichung MAAG Area Commander.

COL Thomas Baker was born at the US Naval Hospital in Tienmou in 1960. These photos are of COL Baker standing at the present day location of the old US Naval Hospital.  The old US Naval Hospital was torn down and a new building stands on the same location.  The new building is an extension of the Veteran's Hospital).

COL Baker writes:  "After 30 years in the Army I am about to retire.  I recently had a chance to visit Taiwan; and what better way to end 30 years of service than to visit the location where I was born -- Tienmou.   I was born in 1960.  My father, SGM(R) Archie Baker was station in Taiwan in the late 50's and early 60's. From my mother's stories, he was first stationed somewhere in Taipei, then transferred to Taichung at the MAAG Area Command. He was the NCO club manager there.

I know my parents loved living there and had a fantastic quality of life.  I recently got to visit and a colleague stationed in Taiwan was kind enough to show me some sites and take me to Tienmou to the old location of the US Naval Hospital.  He actually lives right across the street from the old US Naval Hospital location where I was born. I was looking for some sort of shrine or plaque, but for some reason the Taiwanese didn’t think my birth was deserving (ha).   I even have a tattoo that verifies I was made in Taiwan.

It was great to visit Taiwan.  It is a wonderful place."

Thomas Baker

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Call for Interviews

I received a note today from Derek Sheridan, a graduate student at the University of Chicago whose research concerns the American presence in Taiwan during the cold war.  He is particularly interested in the kinds of day-to-day interactions between American military, diplomatic officials and Taiwanese society during that time.

If you think you might like to participate in this project, or if you have any questions about it, send an email to Derek at: