Tainan District Court
No.307, Sec. 1, Fucian Rd., West Central District, Tainan City【Brief Introduction】
The Tainan District Court construction is the last of its kind built during the Japanese occupation period. It was originally a cavalry camp known as the Mabingying.【History】
When the Japanese occupied Taiwan, they built a district court on this site under the direct jurisdiction of the Governor-General of Taiwan in 1912. It was a venue tainted with tragic incidents of blood and tears during the Japanese occupation, leaving countless historical wounds.
On 25 August, 1915, the Japanese authorities tried the final and the largest in scale armed anti-Japanese case here. It was the famous Silaian Incident. After 60 days of hearing and interrogation, 866 people were sentenced to death. When the news broke out, the whole world was shocked. Under tremendous pressure from the press, the Governor-General of Taiwan was forced to reduce the severity of such a penalty.
The district court was renovated several times after WWII. It was demolished in 1969 when the building was believed to collapse unexpectedly after cracks were found on the walls of the western tower. Therefore, we can only see the dome roof of this old district court in the east, and not the high tower located in the west today. After the restoration of Taiwan, many people suggested that the building be demolished. It was not until the National Historical Monument Conference of 1991 that the building was revived by the Ministry of the Interior as a second class historical site. In fact, it was among the first Japanese era constructions that were officially certified as such.【Features】
The Tainan District Court is a construction with Baroque Style characteristics. Its asymmetrical porch is of a classical gable style with 8 columns of simple decoration. The facade is divided into 8 portions, each one with its own oeil-de-boeuf window. The dome is one of the most elaborate among the Japanese era buildings in Taiwan. Its secondary entrance is located at the west side of the facade, with its own 8-column, classical-style porch. The three columns on each side are a set composed of one square column and two round ones. The two round columns in the middle stand independently.
The building is fundamentally built with bricks, with some parts concrete in composition. Its openings consist of flat arch window frames, with protruding columns. The inner hall is covered mostly with arches. Besides those two halls, some court rooms have luxurious columns on the walls too.
--Source: Travel Information from the Cultural Affairs Bureau, Tainan City Government website.